Okay, not “packing” since Cleveland was the home team, but man oh man did Young Lillard stick a knife through the hearts of everyone in Quicken Loans Arena.
Coming into Tuesday’s contest, the big headline was Lillard vs. Kyrie in a battle of two of the league’s most promising and entertaining young floor generals. And to Kyrie’s credit, his 25 points and 10 assists on most nights would’ve given Cleveland a victory (especially when Dion Waiters – who may or may not be on his way out of town – poured in 25 of his own off the bench).
Yet, on this night, it was Damian who walked out not only with a win, not only with a stat line reading 36 points, eight rebounds and 10 assists,* but with the game-winning trey ball from the top of the key giving Portland the 119-116 dub.
The shot was the second consecutive of its kind for Lillard who crushed the hopes and dreams of Pistons fans on Sunday night – obviously making him a Central Division serial slayer and the Blazers Eastern Conference bullies with a perfect 11-0 record. Last night’s conquest improved Portland to 22-4, good for first in the Western Conference and best record in the league.
Still trying to convince yourself this Portland squad isn’t worth paying attention to because they’ll eventually fizzle out? Cool.
* – And LaMarcus Aldridge? Oh, the team’s leading scorer and rebounder only “chipped in” with 26 points and 15 rebounds. Light work.