The fourth game of Lillard’s 60-point scoring streak ties his record for the third most all-time games
In January, the month wasn’t particularly for Portland Trail Blazers. Portland Trail Blazers. In the game on Wednesday against the Utah Jazz with an overall record of 4-8 for the month. And when they were trailing Utah by 12 points in the first quarter it appeared that they were poised to take their ninth loss and slide into 13th place within the Western Conference. Then, of course, Damian Lillard happened.
Lillard’s scoring on his own is what has kept the Blazers on the right track throughout January. The forward scored 35.6 points over the past nine games. His 29.3 point per game for the season is just a few points away from his career-high of 30 points. However, all of that pales when compared to what the team did on Wednesday in their game against Utah.
The final score? An impressive 60 points from 21-of-29 shots, making him the fourth basketball player to ever in NBA the history of basketball to rack up 60 points with 70 percent shooting. He joins Wilt Chamberlain (four times), David Thompson and Karl Malone. This was the third 60-point game of the season and it was just as amazing as Donovan Mitchell’s 71 scores and Luka Doncic’s triple-double of 60 points in his comeback as a one-man player in the game against New York Knicks. Between the 6:42 point of the third quarter, and the 11:10 mark in the fourth quarter Lillard had the most points, being the only Blazer who scored. For the good of Portland the Blazers, he scored 20 points consecutively during the period.
In the final contest, Lillard came just shy of scoring the half-time mark of Portland’s total 124 points. He hit more than 50% of their 3-pointers, making nine of the 17 the Blazers took as a team and also hitting 60% of the team’s free throws, making 9 of the 15 shots they made. The 21 shots he made on the field were higher than Portland’s starting lineup (18).
The fourth game in which Lillard scored 60 points of his career pushed him into the same position as Michael Jordan and James Harden. They are only behind Kobe Bryant’s 6 and Wilt Chamberlain’s record of 32. In light of his recent feats in scoring in the NBA it’s difficult think that it would become the final time that he can achieve this feat.
It was among the most impressive individual performance of the season and Portland’s record suggests it was able to score nearly every point to win the 134-124 win. In fact, it was just 2 weeks back that Portland suffered the fifty-point Lillard display against Cleveland and was the third loss of 50 points in Lillard’s career. A few days after, the team lost an incredible 44 points against Denver.
The Blazers are still the 22nd-ranked defense in the NBA but their offense is slashed by nearly 13,500 points in 100 minutes every time Lillard is on the bench. If they have to wait for Lillard to score at least 60 points to make it through the January flirtation with the Jazz The team could be going to be in some difficulty in the coming months.