Portland Trailblazers guard Damian Lillard set a career-high with 61 points on Monday night in an overtime win against the Golden State Warriors. He would drill 11 three-pointers to go along with 10 rebounds, seven assists, and went perfect from the free-throw line [16-16].
The Portland Trailblazers would go on to beat the Warriors 129-124 to improve their record to 19-26 and stopping a two-game losing streak. With the New Orleans Pelicans beating the Memphis Grizzlies earlier in the day to the Blazers are 2 games behind them for the final playoff spot in the Western Conference.
After the game, Lillard spoke with TNT’s Allie LaForce about his record-setting night.
“It was a little weird because a couple of years ago I had 58 and I got fouled on a three and I missed two out of three and got stuck on 59. Then earlier this year, I had 60, but we lost, so it was an opportunity at a career-high and make right with the world when I missed the free-throws a couple of years ago,” said Lillard. “So, just clinching the game and I feel I had a great performance, and we needed to win that’s the most important part.”
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Lillard on his Mentality With so Many Injuries
LaForce asked Lillard does his mentality change with CJ McCollum being out with an injury and only suiting nine guys.
“I mean I try to play the game the right way and obviously I know I have to do a little bit more with CJ [McCollum] being out. I try to give the guys that, who don’t usually play a lot of minutes that is playing more minutes, more opportunities because a lot of times guys in this league can play,” Lillard revealed. “It is just a matter of opportunity. I know that we have some capable young guys. So, I’m just trying to give them more opportunity and also be a little more aggressive and assertive, and just mix it up.”
TNT Analyst Reggie Miller weighed in on Lillard’s Career High
During the closing minutes of the game between the Warriors and Blazers, detailed what the work for Portland and what didn’t from Golden State.
“Big basket after big basket when they needed, he kept it within 12 with the high screen and roll. Missed coverages by the [Golden State] Warriors, perfect from the free-throw line 16 of 16, 10 totaled rebounds by an undersized guard to go along with seven assists with 61 points for Dame Dolla [Damian Lillard].
Portland Trailblazers coach Terry Stotts revealed that he has run out of adjectives to describe his All-Star point guard.
“You run out of adjectives to describe Damian,” Portland coach Terry Stotts said after the game, via AJ McCord of KOIN.
“He never quits, never thinks he’s out of a game, never thinks he’s out of a season.”