Lillard sparks Portland past Oklahoma City for 3-1 lead
ABS-CBN Sports on Apr 22, 2019 12:24 PM
Oklahoma City Thunder guard Russell Westbrook (0) drives to the basket as Portland Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard (0) defends in the first half of Game 4 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series Sunday, April 21, 2019, in Oklahoma City. (AP Photo/Alonzo Adams)By Cliff Brunt, Associated Press
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Damian Lillard scored 15 of his 24 points in the third quarter, and the Portland Trail Blazers held Russell Westbrook without a basket in the second half in beating the Oklahoma City Thunder 111-98 on Sunday night (Monday, PHL time) to take a 3-1 lead in their series.
Lillard had another big third quarter after scoring 25 points in the period in a Game 3 loss Friday (Saturday, PHL time). In this game, he was 5-of-7 in the third to help Portland take control for good.
C.J. McCollum scored 27 points, Al-Farouq Aminu had 19 points and nine rebounds and Maurice Harkless added 15 points and 10 rebounds for the Trail Blazers. Portland can close out the series Tuesday (Wednesday, PHL time) at home.
Paul George had 32 points and 10 rebounds for Oklahoma City. Dennis Schroder added 17 points.
Westbrook scored 14 points on 5-for-21 shooting. He missed his final 10 shots and was 0-for-7 for one point in the second half.
George missed most of the second quarter with three fouls, but the Thunder hung tough and led for much of the period. Lillard hit a three-pointer in the final minute of the first half to give Portland the lead, then Aminu hit a triple with 3.9 seconds left as the Trail Blazers took a 50-46 edge into the break.
Lillard hit deep back-to-back three's 27 seconds apart to give Portland a 66-54 lead. The Trail Blazers stretched the lead to 19 in the third quarter before the Thunder closed the gap. George hit a three-pointer from the corner in the closing seconds to cut Portland's lead to 79-68.
A three-pointer by Schroder cut Portland's lead to 97-87 with 3:35 remaining, but Portland maintained control.
Trail Blazers: Lillard missed his first six shots. He was just 2-of-8 in the first half and scored seven points. ... Made 22-of-23 free throws.
Thunder: Coach Billy Donovan was called for a technical in the first quarter for a no-call against Steven Adams. ... Shot 37.5 percent from the field. ... Westbrook had nine rebounds and seven assists.