McCollum lifts Blazers to big win
CJ McCollum picked the right time to get in the zone for the Trail Blazers.
Portland's shooting guard scored 14 of his 34 points in the fourth quarter as the Blazers got past Oklahoma City 108-105 Sunday at Chesapeake Energy Arena.
It was the biggest victory of the year for the Blazers (45-28), who strengthened their hold on third place in the NBA Western Conference and ended a two-game losing streak.
Damian Lillard added 24 points for the Blazers, Jusuf Nurkic had 17 points and 12 rebounds, and Moe Harkless scored 16 points as Portland swept its season series with Oklahoma City, 4-0.
Russell Westbrook collected 23 points, nine assists, eight rebounds and four steals for OKC (44-31), which fell two games back of Portland in fourth place.
Had the Thunder won, they would have been in a virtual tie for third with the Blazers.
It was all Portland in the early going. The Blazers jumped to an 11-2 lead as the Thunder missed their first seven shots from the field. The Blazers, in front 34-17 after one quarter, hiked their edge to 38-20 early in the second quarter. Portland led 44-29 when the Thunder roared back with a 16-0 run to take the lead at 45-44 midway through the quarter. The Blazers carried a 57-52 lead into the half.
Harkless' 3-point shot as time expired in the quarter gave Portland an 82-80 edge.
It was a battle from there. Westbrook's driving layup tied the score at 105-105 with 36.3 seconds left, but McCollum canned a jumper and the Blazers were ahead 107-105 with 18.5 seconds to go.
After a Carmelo Anthony turnover, Portland's Al-Farouq Aminu split a pair at the line with 7.0 seconds left for a 108-105 lead.
Anthony missed a 3-point attempt just before time expired.
The Blazers continue on their three-game trip with stops Tuesday at New Orleans and Wednesday at Memphis.