Lillard, Blazers Advance To Western Conference Finals
DENVER, Colo. – Damian Lillard and the Portland Trail Blazers are moving on to the Western Conference Finals after defeating the Denver Nuggets 100-96 in a win-or-go-home Game 7.
Lillard didn’t have a stellar game by his own standards, finishing with just 13 points on 3-for-17 shooting, However, he completed a double-double with 10 rebounds, nearly had a triple-double with eight assists and had some key baskets down the stretch to help Portland move on to the next round.
His teammate, CJ McCollum, was terrific with 37 points and nine rebounds to lead the Blazers. His made basket with 16 seconds remaining to increase the Blazers’ lead to three was the nail in the coffin for Denver.
Portland will play in the conference finals for the first time since the 2000 playoffs.
In this playoff run, Lillard, who starred at Weber State in his college days, has been lights out. He’s averaging a playoff career high of 29.8 points per game while shooting 44.9 percent from the field and 38.7 percent from beyond the arc.
His near-half court shot over Oklahoma City’s Paul George in the first round of the playoffs has been the highlight of the NBA postseason so far and Lillard will have one more playoff series to provide more excitement.
The Blazers will play the Golden State Warriors, the two-time defending NBA Finals champions, in the Western Conference Finals. Times and dates for the games have not yet been announced.