He did it again.
In 2013-14, Damian Lillard’s first exposure to the postseason, he hit a shot with 0.9 seconds on the inbound to send the Houston Rockets packing.
Tonight, Lillard carried the Blazers through the first half. Then, he sent the Thunder packing the only way “Logo Lillard” knows how.
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) April 24, 2019
He finished with 50 points on 17-of-33 shooting overall and 10-of-18 from three. What an exclamation point to reach 50.
CJ McCollum was in serious foul trouble (three fouls in the first quarter).
All Lillard did was lead Portland to a 61-60 halftime lead. The four-time All-Star scored 34 points in the opening 24 minutes. He (almost) single-handedly kept the Blazers in the game.
Once McCollum returned, Portland started going through him. The Thunder were content with that until McCollum started dropping buckets on them.
Lillard’s back-court mate scored 15 points in the second half.
The moment that changed the game was late in the fourth, but apparently it started in the third.
Jusuf Nurkic said he decided to leave his house and come to the Moda Center with 3 minutes left in the 3rd Q. “I knew it was gonna make a difference,” he said.
— Joe Freeman (@BlazerFreeman) April 24, 2019
Nurkic appeared on the bench with the Blazers down eight with under four minutes to play. The cameras put his face on the scoreboard and the Moda crowd erupted. All of a sudden, Portland didn’t feel down eight.
Jusuf Nurkic said he started dressing at home with 3 minutes left in the third quarter. By the time he arrived there was 3:20 left in game and Blazers down 113-105. “I knew I could make a difference,” he said.
— Jason Quick (@jwquick) April 24, 2019
The Blazers ended the game on a 13-2 run to capture their first series win since 2016. Nurkic’s appearance definitely had an impact on the Blazers demeanor, and boy did it pay off.
Game Five: Where Logo Lillard met Dame Time in the nick of time.