Happy 50th Birthday to Hakeem The Dream Olajuwon – the Triple/Quadruple/Quintuple Double Threat
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Aka VincentDa & RedApples fka Expiredpineapples. My alter-ego is a digital-marketing guy in Houston. Won editing awards & created obsolete flash websites that have been featured in mags like Sports Illustrated. Studied film & women at FSU during the golden age of hip-hop. Collects records, laserdiscs, sports memorabilia & toys. Father of 2 daughters that are more athletic and popular on YouTube.
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The most skilled center of all-time turns 50 today and that’s why some of us have the day off so we can watch NBA games on a Monday afternoon. OK maybe just me but most of you probably have the day off because it’s Martin Luther King, Jr Day (not his Birthday). The history of MLK day actually starts right around the time when the career of Hakeem started in the early to mid 80s with the University of Houston and then Houston Rockets.
When talking about Hakeem people will always bring up mid 90s Hakeem The Dream during the Clutch City years but my favorite Hakeem was Akeem the mean triple double threat of the 80s up until the days where he became a front office nightmare and was put on the trading block before getting it together and becoming the dream.
During the era I’m talking about, Hakeem would of been the #1 roto fantasy player every season with his ability to put up 10 of anything in the boxscore or go for 20/20 on any given night. Hakeem is 1 of only 4 players to ever record a quadruple double but he actually had another quadruple double in the same month in March of 1990 but the league took away an assist leaving him with 29pts, 18rebs, 11blks and 9asts. This is coming just a couple weeks after putting up 18pts, 16rebs, 11blks and 10ast. If those two games weren’t amazing enough, Hakeem also put together the closest thing to a quintuple double in 1987 when he put up 38pts, 17rebs, 12blks, 7stls and 6ast.
We recently saw Orlando Magic’s Nikola Vucevic pull off a rare 25/25 game which has only been done 25 times in the last 25 years. Of those 25, Hakeem might have the most impressive with 32pts, 25rebs, 10blks, 3stls and 2ast. That game is also the only 25/25 game and triple double.
In 1989 he was 1 rebound shy of pulling off a 40/25 game and in the same season he had a rare 30/20/10 with 32pts 25rebs and 10blks! For all the fantasy freaks out there I know you are probably trying to calculate how many points these games would be worth in your league.
What also makes Hakeem’s triple doubles so impressive is they aren’t squeakers achieved at the last moment like Anthony Bowie or attempted in desperation at the end like Blatche or Ricky Davis. These are hearty triple doubles like (the ones mentioned above and):
- 24pts 21rebs 12blks
- 37pts 13rebs 12ast
- 29pts 18rebs 11blks
- 24pts 16rebs 11blks
What hasn’t been mentioned outside of his quadruple game is where Hakeem stands in the steals department. How about 8th all-time. That’s ahead of Alvin Robertson, Allen Iverson, Kobe Bryant, Isiah Thomas and Magic Johnson. There used to be a conspiracy that Hakeem was getting credited for a block and a steal on the same play when he would block a shot and then grab possession of the ball. I’m sure it’s happened a few times but unlikely 2162 times.
So if you have to work today then your boss and company sucks. If you have the day off because of MLK day then enjoy the daytime games today. If you have the day off because it’s Hakeem’s birthday (like me because my boss, me, celebrates it) then enjoy watching old Akeem clips while taking a trip down memory lane when I had to pop in a VHS tape to enjoy these type of highlights.
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