NBA 2020-21: New NBA record set by T.J. McConnell with 9 steals in the first half

NBA 2020-21: T.J. McConnell picked the Cleveland Cavaliers’ pockets on Wednesday, for the first time just 2:07 seconds after checking in midway through the first quarter. By the time the second quarter came to a close, he’d set an NBA record, pilfering his ninth with 15.2 seconds remaining in the half.

The previous record, 8, had been achieved 12 times since the league began recording steals in 1973-74. League record for a game is 11, by two players, since steals have been recorded in 1973-74.

McConnell picked off his 10th steal late in the fourth quarter, which — as noted by NBA.com’s John Schuhmann — sealed the first points-assists-steals triple-double in almost 23 years. Former Hawks guard Mookie Blalock was the most recent of five players to do so, with his coming on April 14, 1998, against the Sixers: 14 points, 11 assists, 10 steal line.

McConnell finished with 16 points, shooting a perfect 8-for-8 from the field, 13 assists, and 10 steals.

It was the 11th triple-double to include 10 steals and was the first by a player off the bench. He also pulled down two rebounds and logged a block.

Larry Kenon (Spurs; Dec. 26, 1976) and Kendall Gill (Nets; April 3, 1999) share the overall steals record with 11 in a game.

Points-Assists-Steals Triple Doubles

PLAYER DATE MATCHUP PTS AST STL
T.J. McConnell 03/03/2021 IND @ CLE 16 13 10
Mookie Blaylock 04/14/1998 ATL vs. PHI 14 11 10
Kevin Johnson 12/09/1993 PHX vs. WAS 17 13 10
Alvin Robertson 02/18/1986 SAN vs. PHX 20 10 10
Clyde Drexler 01/10/1986 POR @ MIL 26 11 10
Lafayette Lever 03/09/1985 DEN vs. IND 13 15 10
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