Lillard wants the MVP: 43 points, 16 assists and goodbye Zion

The Blazers point guard stars in another superb performance. In addition, Memphis beats Oklahoma and Utah continues its streak against the Clippers.


A hero. It is the best way to define Damian Lillard, a timeless point guard, a star with an innate ability to score under pressure, hit impossible baskets and win the viewer with long shots and spectacular resolution of tight ends. The star got 5 points and 2 assists in the last two minutes, for a total of 43 points and 16 passes to the basket, again video game numbers that give the Blazers their sixth consecutive victory, a streak in which the point guard leaves to 31 points per duel. This season he averages more than 29, with statistics above 4 rebounds and 7 assists, in addition to shooting with 45% from the field, 38% from 3-pointers and 93% from the free throw. Lillard has also scored 15 games above 30 points, three of them above 40, five double-doubles, plays rarely seen and a record, that of the Blazers, of 18-10, the fourth best from an ultra-competitive West in which they have emerged despite their obvious defensive shortcomings and a start full of doubts that they have resolved, in the most brilliant way, with Lillard at the helm.

Against the Pelicans, the point guard emerged as always and beat a team that has improved but has not found a regularity that no one has this year but is necessary, especially in the Western Conference, to enter the playoffs. Zion Williamson scored 36 points, 12 of them in the fourth quarter, and posted a spectacular 12 of 18 shooting from the field. The Pelicans' potential star is averaging 24.6 points this season, and his performance today has added 6 rebounds, 4 assists and 2 steals. And yet the Pelicans do not fuel: Brandon Ingram went 14 + 5 + 6, but with 4-of-12 shooting, including the failure that would have forced overtime. Lonzo, with 21 points and 5 assists, missed a 3-pointer for the win just before Ingram himself. Willy Hernangómez once again had a good performance, he played 29 minutes (some of them at the end), he is increasingly involved in the rotation of Stan Van Gundy and contributed a double-double of 11 points and 17 rebounds. In addition, Eric Bledsoe scored 10 and JJ Reddick, who already coincided with Van Gundy on the Magic more than a decade ago (when they played the 2009 Finals against the Lakers, with a 4-1 loss), went to 16.10 off. them in the last room.

In the Blazers, the entire quintet scored 10 or more points in addition to Carmelo Anthony, the sixth strictly speaking, who reached 12 and is still the leader of the bench from which Terry Stotts does not stop seeing Lillard exhibitions. Beyond the aforementioned star, who sentenced the duel with a spectacular ending that included a 2 + 1 that left the locals shivering, Gary Trent Jr. went to 23 goals with a very good 5 of 10 in triples, which for Portland was 18 out of 41 overall. Lillard's shooting series, by the way, says it all: 14 out of 28 in field goals, 7 out of 16 in 3s (it has already been leaked that he will participate in this contest during the All Star) and 8 of 8 in free throws, with 11 points in the fourth quarter (4 of 6 in shots and 2 of 3 in triples) and 4 assists (the 16 he distributed are his best mark of the season) that rounded a supreme performance, yet another within a stratospheric season in which he opposes, in a lawful and legitimate way, an MVP who will be sold at a high price. What was said: a hero. Although for the Pelicans, for a time that has been quite long, he has been the villain.


Utah continues its streak. Quin Snyder's team, the best in the Western Conference and in the NBA with a 24-5 record with which they distance themselves in two games to some Lakers who will have to deal with a calendar, are already 20 victories in 21 games. difficult and without Anthony Davis in the next few dates. And in 3.5 to the Clippers, who are trying to solve in this present time the sainete of the injuries, which has left them momentarily (it is nothing serious) without their two stars, Kawhi Leonard and Paul George, two of the best players in the league. NBA. Without them, they beat the Heat thanks to the incredible performance of Marcus Morris (32 points), but the miracle has not happened again against a franchise that is far from how limp they are in Miami. And that they held on in the first half and it was not until after the break that the visitors were able to separate, with 35 and 33 points in the third and last period that hammered a very solid defense at the beginning but ended up exhausted. In the absence of creation in attack without their references, Tyronn Lue had no choice but to entrench themselves behind, but the plan did not last long enough. Lou Williams, with 16 points, was the best of the Clippers, while the Jazz had another good performance from Donovan Mitchell (24 + 7 + 4) and a Rudy Gobert who dominated the boards in spectacular fashion: 23 points and 20 rebounds in less than 32 minutes. Tremendous.


A triple-double from Ja Morant and a great team game, allows the Grizzlies to conquer their 12th win of the season, which leaves them right at 50% (they have the same losses) and in ninth place in a very expensive Western Conference and in which nobody can (and should not) relax. Morant registered 15 points, 11 rebounds and 12 assists and was accompanied by a Jonas Valanciunas who achieved a great double-double: 22 + 12, with five offensive rebounds. In addition, a great game from Kyle Anderson (20 + 5 + 5, with 5 steals), 22 points for Grayson Allen and 17 for Dillon Brooks, with another 12 for Brandon Clarke. Memphis, who played at home, did not manage to separate until the last quarter (36-28 of a partial) from the Thunder who had, once again, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander as the most outstanding player: 22 + 3 + 6 and averages 22.6 + 5.5 + 6.5, exceeding 50% in field goals and 38% in triples with only 22 years and his third year as a professional. Oklahoma is in the penultimate place in the West, something that does not worry too much for its new coach, Mark Daigneault, or Sam Presti in the offices, since it is a transition year for a team with many rounds of the draft and that thinks in the future undisguised.

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