The Timberwolves are about to play their first Christmas game in the franchise's history and all they have to do is find a way to defend Oklahoma City star Russell Westbrook.

The NBA picked the Wolves to play for a first time because of their three young stars, Karl-Anthony Towns, Andrew Wiggins and Zach LaVine.

The league invited the Thunder back for a seventh consecutive Christmas game primarily because of Westbrook now that Kevin Durant plays for Golden State.

He has scored at least 42 points in his last three games and has 14 triple-doubles already this season. The rest of the NBA has 18 combined.

Westbrook is one pace to average a triple double: He's averaging 31.8 points, 10.8 assists and 10.5 rebounds.

"What he's doing is remarkable," Wolves coach Tom Thibodeau said. "Both he and (Houston's James) Harden doing it night after night, when every team is gearing up and planning what they can do to slow him down. You're not going to stop them and your whole team has to be committed to stopping him. That's who Russell has been. He has been an attack player since he came into the league. He keeps adding to his game and when you look at the way he's scoring, it's not just the scoring. It's the playmaking and then the rebounding.

"You add up that and it's pretty unique."

The Thunder will play tonight without guards Victor Oladipo (wrist) and Cameron Payne (foot).

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