Forget about trying to explain the Philadelphia 76ers anymore.
Philly has spent all season not tanking, when it was supposed to be the tankiest of tank jobs the NBA had ever seen. From Michael Carter-Williams treating the league's contenders as his personal punching bags to Evan Turner playing like a superstar, the Sixers are inexplicably OK.
Joining their fleet of curious abnormalities is Tony Wroten, who made history in the Sixers' victory over the Houston Rockets, becoming the only player in league history to record a triple-double in his first career start:
Via @eliassports Tony Wroten: 1st player since starts were 1st tracked in 1970 to have triple-double in 1st start— NBA.com/Stats (@nbastats) November 14, 2013
Wroten went for 18 points, 10 rebounds and 11 assists in the win, tying a career high in points—which he set a few days prior against the Cleveland Cavaliers—and setting new career bests in rebounds and assists. His previous highs were 14, five and five, respectively.
The start was only the 44th NBA game Wroten has ever played in, making him the 17th player since 1985 to notch at least one triple-double in so few a number of games. Only three other players have accomplished the same feat in the past 10 years—Kemba Walker, Jordan Crawford and John Wall; Walker was the last player to do it in 2012.
Surprise stat lines haven't been a rare occurrence for Wroten since joining the Sixers. Through nine games, he's averaging 11.6 points, 4.0 rebounds and 3.0 assists in just over 23 minutes of action. This comes after pouring in 2.6 points, 0.8 rebounds and 1.2 assists in 35 appearances with the Memphis Grizzlies last season as a rookie.
Subbing for the injured Carter-Williams, Wroten revealed afterward that he hadn't notched a triple-double before. Ever.
"First time for everything," he said, per the Associated Press (via ESPN). "I never had a triple-double at any level, not middle school, high school, anywhere."
A roster made up of mostly misfits continues to turn heads and make history. In the first game of the season, a win over the Miami Heat, Carter-Williams set the Association record for steals in a debut with nine. Soon after, he joined Shaquille O'Neal as the second player in NBA history to win a conference Player of the Week award seven days into his tenure.
Michael Carter-Williams named East player of the week. Second player (Shaquill O'Neal the first) to win award in his first week.— Jeff Zillgitt (@JeffZillgitt) November 4, 2013
Are Tony Wroten and the Sixers legit, or full of it?
Wroten wasn't the only Sixer who set new career highs against the Rockets, either. James Anderson, who drilled a three to send the game into overtime, pumped in 36 points, almost doubling his previous best of 19.
"I'm proud of their competitive spirit," 76ers head coach Brett Brown said, via the AP. "We have no right to have an inherent chemistry or camaraderie. We were thrown together in a few months. But the group trusts each other and enjoys playing together."
They're also winning and making history together. Can't forget about that.
*All stats compiled from Basketball-Reference and are accurate as of Nov. 14 unless otherwise noted.