Damian Lillard inspired Portland Trail Blazers to a 131-114 victory over the Houston Rockets. In the process, he set franchise and career highs with 71 points-tied for the highest in the NBA this season and 13 3-pointers. Lillard is now level with Cleveland’s Donovan Mitchell for the most points in a game this season. Mitchell scored 71 points in the win over Chicago on January 2.
If you usually wager on NBA events, you must have seen Lillard’s exploits on the court. In this regard, you can take a look at the comprehensive guide on promo codes offered by online sportsbooks, offering to enhance your NBA wagering experience.
Lillard broke his own franchise record of 61 points which he had managed twice, on a 3-pointer with 4:42, and also topped his career record for 3s in a single game with 11. In the game’s final minutes, the Moda Center crowd gave Lillard a standing ovation chanting, “MVP! MVP!”
By halftime, Lillard had already scored 41 points and eight 3-pointers which was also a career-high for him. That was the most points in a half for any player in the league this season. He also tied with Kyrie Irving for the second-most by a player in the first half of an NBA game in the last 25 seasons. The record holder is Kobe Bryant with 42 which he scored in 2003. Lillard had already hit 50 points by the start of the fourth quarter.
His 11th 3-pointer of the night, also his career high, made it 113-103 with 6:43 left. After that, he added a driving layup and a free throw. Lillard started the game after being rested for the loss to Sacramento. He took part in the NBA All-Star Game.
The blazers were ahead with 73 points at the break, with Lillard becoming the 10th player since the 1996-97 season to have scored 40-plus points in a half.
Additionally, Lillard has now recorded 60 points or more in five games. This achievement makes him the third all-time player with such a record. Bryant and Chamerlain are first and second, respectively. On the other hand, Lillard’s 15 games with 50 or more points rank as the sixth-most in the history of the NBA.
Immediately after the iconic performance, the drug test dampened Lillard’s mood as he fears needles. After the game, the record breaker claimed that the test brought his mood down to the floor!
That performance also made Lillard the 8th player to score 70 points during a regular season game and the first aged over 30 to do it. He is also the 4th player to manage 13 3-pointers in a game. Furthermore, this was the second time Lillard scored over 60 points and 10 3-pointers- something only he has achieved.
This is a special season for the NBA as it is the first season in which multiple players have scored 70 points. There was a social media buzz after Lillard’s performance. For instance, one NBA fan commented – “Dame so great,” and it was great indeed!