Damian Lillard scores 71 points: Logo Lillard makes 400-plus feet worth of buckets, plus 10 jaw-dropping stats

Damian Lillard became the eighth player in NBA history to score 70 points in a single game on Sunday when he lost 71 points in a 131-114 win over the Houston Rockets. The performance is the latest in a string of gems of the Blazers Guard. He started Sunday’s game averaging 37.6 points in his last 18 games. Now this amount is even higher. Lillard started the stretch with 50 points in a loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers and 60 points in a win over the Utah Jazz in late January. With 71 points, he set a new career high as he lifted the Blazers to a critical victory over the Rockets.

At 28–31, the Blazers went into Sunday’s game not only below .500, but out of the picture. With this victory, they gained a decisive advantage on the night that rivals Minnesota and Oklahoma City lost. They are currently ranked 11th in the Western Conference, but are only three games behind the fourth-seeded Phoenix Suns.

Lillard had several chances to push his score even higher in the closing minutes, but with little energy left, he avoided the eyes of his teammates in the final seconds on the floor due to exhaustion. He left the game 44.1 seconds before the applause of the fans in Portland.

This game was Lillard’s first since the All-Star break. He was ruled out of Thursday’s game against the Sacramento Kings due to a rest assignment, which caused some confusion considering it’s been nine days since his last game. The decision to drop Lillard was due to the delay in travel. A blizzard in Portland kept the Blazers on the tarmac for seven hours Wednesday before they finally headed home Thursday for Sacramento. Without Lillard, the Blazers lost to the Kings by 17 points. In the end, however, it would be hard to complain about the results. Lillard used the rest night as the launching pad for one of the greatest individual performances in NBA history. But how great was it? Let’s look at Lillard’s performance in numbers:


Lillard is the only player in NBA history to score 70 points and make at least 10 three-pointers in a single game. He was already the only player in NBA history to score 60 points and throw at least 10 triples.


Four players in NBA history have scored 60 or more points in multiple games in a single season. They are Lillard, James Harden, Kobe Bryant and Michael Jordan. Here’s the catch: Only Lillard (2022-23, 2019-20) and Bryant (2005-06, 2006-07) have achieved this feat twice.


Only three players in the history of the NBA have ever played separate games, scoring at least 50, 60 and 70 points in the same season. This is Wilt Chamberlain, Kobe Bryant, and now Damian Lillard.


Lillard now has six of the highest-scoring individual games in Blazers history. That includes today’s 71, two 61-point games, two 60-point games, and one 59-point game. The non-Lillard Blazers single-game scoring record is 54, set by Damon Stoudamire in 2005.


This is the number of players in NBA history who have scored 70 points in a game. Wilt Chamberlain did it six times, including an NBA record of 100 points. Kobe Bryant is second on the leaderboard in singles scoring with 81 points in 2006. David Thompson, David Robinson, Elgin Baylor, Devin Booker and Donovan Mitchell also scored at least 70 points. Mitchell scored 71 points. this season, but he needed extra time to get there. Lillard made it to 71 in the main.


That’s how many three-pointers Lillard hit in Sunday’s win. He was one short of Clay Thompson’s NBA record of 14 three-pointers. Lillard attempted to hit a record three-pointer with 1:14 left in the fourth quarter but missed. When his teammates tried to give him another shot at ultimate possession of the game, he seemed to give up exhaustion.


Lillard, now 32, is the oldest player ever to score 70 points in an NBA game. David Robinson, aged 28 at the time, previously held that record, making Lillard the first player in his 30s to ever score 70 in a game.


That’s how many minutes Lillard played against Houston on Sunday. He thus set a new NBA record for most points scored in under 40 minutes of play in a single game. The previous record set by George Gervin and Jerry West was 63.


In true shooting percentage, Lillard just had the most effective game of at least 71 points in NBA history. He shot 22 of 38 from the field, 13 of 22 from three-point range and 14 of 14 from the free throw line for a true shooting percentage of 80.4%. The previous record in a 71-point game was 78.9 percent.


Many of Lillard’s 3-pointers that night came from behind the line, including a stunning logo shot late in the first half. In all, Lillard hit 420 feet on Sunday, making him the first player to hit 400 feet since the league started tracking shooting distance in 1996.


Lillard has 748 points in his last 19 games. Thus, his average result in this segment is 39.37 points per game. It’s one of the most remarkable stretches in recent NBA history, and yet his Blazers are only 10-9 in those games. The Blazers acted as trade deadline sellers, trading away important players such as Josh Hart and Gary Payton II. Portland is doing everything in its power to get out of the game, but Lillard just won’t let them. If the Blazers make it to the playoffs, it will be because of what Lillard is doing right here and now.


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