Saturday, Jan. 30: Blazers 123, Bulls 122
The skinny: The injury-depleted Trail Blazers needed a win, and Damian Lillard rose to the occasion Saturday at Chicago.
Lillard scored 44 points, helped by hitting eight 3-pointers, including the game-winning 3-pointer as time expired as Portland beat the Bulls 123-122.
With Chicago leading 122-120, the Blazers found Lillard, who hit the fadeaway 3-pointer to give Portland (10-8) the win.
The Bulls led 122-117 after Coby White hit a pair of free throws with 11.5 seconds left, but Lillard went down the floor and nailed a long 3-pointer to bring Portland within 122-120.
The Blazers' Gary Trent Jr. forced a jump ball against Zach LaVine with 6.2 seconds left. Trent won the jump ball and Lillard hit the game-winning shot.
On Jan. 5 Chicago overcame a 20-point deficit to win at Portland. On Saturday the Bulls overcame a 19-point third-quarter deficit to lead by five in the closing seconds before Lillard and Trent came up big.
Lillard went 15 of 26 from the floor, including 8 of 17 from 3-point land. Oh, he also had nine assists.
Enes Kanter had 22 points and 11 rebounds. Trent had 18 points.
Lauri Markkanen had 31 points for Chicago and LaVine added 26 for the Bulls (7-11).
The Blazers shot .511 from the floor and Chicago .506. Chicago went 21 of 45 on 3-pointers (.467), and Portland 17 of 42 (.402).
Quotable: "Those two plays were equally important as a game-winner because without those plays there's no opportunity for it," Lillard said, of Trent forcing the jump ball and winning the tip.
"I was just trying to get my hands on the ball any way I possibly can," Trent said.
The lineup: Jusuf Nurkic (wrist) and CJ McCollum (foot) are out for awhile, and Derrick Jones Jr. (foot) missed the game. But, Robert Covington (concussion) returned, equipped with a protective mask.
Next up: The Blazers play back-to-back games Monday and Tuesday. On Monday, they play at Milwaukee at 5 p.m., and then play at Washington the next night.
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