Domantas Sabonis’ rare triple-double places him in elite company

Jan 4, 2024, 12:30 PM | Updated: 12:35 pm

MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE - DECEMBER 31: Domantas Sabonis #10 of the Sacramento Kings looks on during the ...

(Photo by Justin Ford/Getty Images)

(Photo by Justin Ford/Getty Images)

“There’s just so much that he does on the court that I feel like doesn’t get appreciated enough or people don’t realize it,” Sacramento Kings guard De’Aaron Fox told reporters on December 18th when asked about his fellow All-NBA teammate Domantas Sabonis.

“I don’t know how you don’t realize it, but maybe it’s just people don’t appreciate what he does enough.”

If some NBA viewers didn’t appreciate or acknowledge what Sabonis has been doing thus far in the 2023-24 season, the talented big man gave those fans another reason to reconsider on Wednesday night.

Sabonis posted a monstrous triple-double during Sacramento’s thrilling 138-135 win over the Orlando Magic in double-overtime, becoming just the fifth player to post a 20+ point, 20+ rebound, and 10+ assist triple-double since the start of the 2019-20 season.

Over 45 minutes of action, the center finished the night with 22 points, 23 rebounds, and 12 assists while shooting eight-of-14 from the field. Sabonis also swiped two steals and blocked one shot to cap off one of the most impressive single-game performances you will see from an NBA center.

Sabonis joins two-time NBA MVP Nikola Jokic, Luka Doncic, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, and Giannis Antetokounmpo as the only players to post 20-20-10 in a single game over the past five seasons.

The impressive feat from Sabonis also etched the big man’s name in the Kings’ record books as well.

Only Chris Webber (1999) and DeMarcus Cousins (twice in 2015) had posted 20-20-10 in a game during the Sacramento era (1985-present). Now, Sabonis is the latest to join a list that includes two of the best players in Kings franchise history.

Sabonis has made rebounding look easy over the past three games, pulling down 63 boards during that span–the most over a three-game stretch in Sacramento’s franchise history that dates back to the start of the 1948-49 season.

As of January 4th, Sabonis leads the NBA in rebounds per game (12.8) and total rebounds (424) while ranking third in offensive rebounds (114).

Thanks to his dominance on the glass and efficient scoring from two-point range (61%), Sabonis has once again been a double-double machine one year removed from leading the league with 65 double-doubles.

This season has been more of the same story as Sabonis ranks second in the NBA with 29 double-doubles, only trailing Jokic’s 30.

Sabonis will enter play on Friday night looking for his 17th consecutive double-double, which would be the longest streak the NBA has seen this year. On the triple-double front, Sabonis’ seven rank second in the league–also behind Jokic’s 11.

Whether it be scoring, rebounding, or dishing out assists–another avenue that sees Sabonis hold top-10 ranks in assists (7th) and assists per game (8th)–Sabonis has been a key in Sacramento’s strong start.

“There aren’t many people that have ever been able to do that at that size, and obviously, he’s such a focal point of our offense,” Fox said of Sabonis during the Kings’ previous homestand. “There are just so many things that he does for us.”

With Fox among league leaders in scoring (6th with 29.4 points per game) and Sabonis picking up right where he left off from his All-Star and All-NBA campaigns in 2022-23, the Kings have steadily remained in the top-five spots in the Western Conference standings.

There has been plenty of chatter on social media from those who cover the game nationally regarding Sabonis’ validity as a game-changing talent, but the 27-year-old hasn’t paid it any mind.

For Sabonis and the Kings, the results remain the same as last season: Monster double-doubles–or, in this case, triple-doubles–and the most important stat of all: Wins.

Sacramento is 20-13 behind Fox, Sabonis, and company as the Kings continue to find ways to win.

Sure, some holes will need to be addressed before the February 8th trade deadline, such as Sacramento’s lack of defensive impact, but there it’s hard to deny that Sabonis has been one of the main things that has worked for this group–and worked incredibly well, at that.

Fans around the 916 have rallied around Sabonis, and The White Stripes’ hit song Seven Nation Army could get a lot more plays as the season unfolds.

“Doooo-man-tas Sa-boooo-nissss…”

When is the next Sacramento Kings game?

Sacramento’s four-game homestand will continue on Friday night when the new-look Toronto Raptors come to town.

Toronto recently acquired forward RJ Barrett and guard Immanuel Quickly from the New York Knicks in return for two-way star OG Anunoby in a move that has given the Raptors a new young core to build around.

Be sure to tune in right here on Sactown Sports 1140 for all of your Kings vs. Raptors coverage, beginning at 5:30 PM PST on Game Night before a 7:00 PM PST tip-off from Golden 1 Center.

Upcoming Schedule

  • Friday, January 5th – Sacramento Kings vs. Toronto Raptors – 7:00 PM PST
  • Sunday, January 7th – Sacramento Kings vs. New Orleans Pelicans – 3:00 PM PST
  • Tuesday, January 9th – Sacramento Kings @ Detroit Pistons – 4:00 PM PST
  • Wednesday, January 10th – Sacramento Kings @ Charlotte Hornets – 4:00 PM PST
  • Friday, January 12th – Sacramento Kings @ Philadelphia 76ers – 4:30 PM PST

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Domantas Sabonis’ rare triple-double places him in elite company