Draymond Green earns 7th triple-double

Updated: March 18, 2011, 1:49 AM ET
Associated Press

TAMPA, Fla. -- Michigan State's Draymond Green recorded the seventh official triple-double in NCAA tournament history Thursday night.

Green had 23 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists in the 10th-seeded Spartans' 78-76 loss to No. 7 seed UCLA in the Southeast region. It was his second triple-double of the season.

Green keyed Michigan State's feverish rally from a 23-point deficit in the second half. The Spartans came up short after Green missed a 3-pointer in the final minute. He made 6 of 13 shots and 8 of 9 free throws -- getting more looks because of Kalin Lucas' slow start -- and added four steals.

"He hit a couple of 3s and he made a couple of great assists and he got a couple of great rebounds," Spartans coach Tom Izzo said. "You know, we went through him a lot. ... To dig a hole like that and bounce back is almost incredible, considering the lack of maybe numbers of scorers we have with the two guys gone.

"So his effort was great, and after a little bit sluggish start, I thought even the first half got five or six rebounds, but he was in there by himself for a while, so I'm proud of him."

Green joined Gary Grant (Michigan, 1987), Shaquille O'Neal (LSU, 1992), David Cain (St. John's, 1993), Andre Miller (Utah, 1998), Dwyane Wade (Marquette, 2003) and Cole Aldrich (Kansas, 2009) on the NCAA's list.

Since assists were not kept nationally until 1984, and steals and blocked shots were added two years later, the NCAA recognizes several unofficial triple-doubles. That list includes Kansas' B.H. Born, Cincinnati's Oscar Robertson, Jacksonville's Artis Gilmore and Michigan State's Magic Johnson.

Green credited his big game against the Bruins to the frenetic pace and the need to do more to get back in the game.

"I think we started pushing the ball more," Green said. "I think Kalin started getting more involved in the game and we started getting some things in transition, which is one of the biggest strengths of his game. We got some easy baskets out, and I think we started checking better. And once we picked up full court, I don't think they handled it as well as I thought they would and we got some key turnovers.

"I think the most important thing was our energy level picked up a lot. The first half we pretty much came out and dug ourselves too deep of a hole, did a great job of fighting back, but we were two points too many down and just couldn't come back from it."


Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press