EditorsNote: Corrects Jarrett Allen’s point total in graf 13; other minor edits
Damian Lillard became the first NBA player this season to score 60 points, but it wasn’t enough as Joe Harris ignited a late run that propelled the visiting Brooklyn Nets to 119-115 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers on Friday night.
Lillard drilled a running 34-footer at the final horn, allowing him to surpass his previous career high of 59 points set in April 2017 against the Utah Jazz.
There were three 60-point games in the NBA last season. Houston Rockets guard James Harden had a pair of 61-pointers, while guard Kemba Walker, then of the Charlotte Hornets, went for 60.
Lillard finished 19-for-33 from the field, 7-for-16 on 3-point tries and 15-for-15 from the free-throw line.
The one-man show wasn’t enough to overcome 10 combined 3-pointers from Spencer Dinwiddie and Kyrie Irving. Dinwiddie led Brooklyn with 34 points off the bench, and Irving added 33 points.
The Nets outscored the Trail Blazers 48-33 from beyond the arc.
Brooklyn led for most of the first 40 minutes, including by 10 in the second quarter, but a pair of Lillard hoops put Portland on top 99-98 with 7:31 remaining.
The Nets’ deficit was 103-98 with 5:45 to go before Dinwiddie scored from the interior and Harris drilled his back-to-back 3s, producing a 106-103 lead.
Brooklyn never trailed again, completing a 17-2 run with a 3-pointer by Irving with 1:41 to go that created a 10-point margin at 115-105.
Lillard scored seven straight Portland points to get the host as close as 115-112 with 40.4 seconds to go, but Irving countered with a 9-footer with 17.8 seconds left to clinch it.
Dinwiddie’s team-high point total came on 11-for-18 shooting overall and 6-for-10 accuracy from 3-point range.
Irving shot 4-for-8 from beyond the arc and found time for a game-high six assists.
Harris finished with 14 points for the Nets, who were opening a nine-day, five-game trip, while Jarrett Allen had 12 points to complement a team-high nine rebounds.
Anfernee Simons added 15 points for Portland, which lost its fourth straight, while Hassan Whiteside contributed 10 points and a game-high 15 rebounds.
--Field Level Media