By Leobert Julian A. de la Peña
Damian Lillard just had one of those nights after draining eight three-pointers during the Portland Trailblazers’ dominant win against the Los Angeles Lakers, 127-115, in the ongoing NBA Season last February 14, 2023.
Lillard cashed in eight of Portland’s 23 made threes on his way to a 40-point output including six rebounds, five assists, and a block.
The 2023 NBA All-Star also shot efficiently from the floor, converting 13 of his 23 total shots taken and an 8/14 showing from downtown.
Lillard’s waxing-hot start helped Portland avoid a slow start after Anthony Davis got it going early in the game when he took advantage of Jusuf Nurkic’s absence due to an injury.
Davis carried the whole Lakers squad when he bullied his way underneath and scored most of his points from his open mid-range jumpers.
After trailing 14-8 with five minutes remaining in the opening period, the Trailblazers suddenly retook the lead off a 23-5 run capped off by a buzzer-beating three from Lillard.
Lillard wasn’t done doing damage and went berserk in the second period when he single-handedly torched Los Angeles with a 24-point quarter on his way to 30 markers at the end of the first half.
Isolated against the taller Austin Reaves with six seconds left before the second canto ends, Lillard crossed him up with a filthy in-and-out dribble and stepped back to the left elbow for another trey at the end of the quarter.
The Lakers never recovered after Lillard’s second-quarter explosion and failed to trim the lead to single digits the whole second half.
It was also a balanced offensive effort from Portland after getting double-digit scores from Shaedon Sharpe, Matisse Thybulle, Anfernee Simons, and Nassir Little.
With the big-time victory, Portland improved to 28 wins and 29 losses while winning their last two games out of three.
Meanwhile, the Lakers suffered another disappointing loss without the presence of their superstar LeBron James who is still out due to left ankle soreness.