Damian Lillard lifts Blazers over Pistons in overtime

Detroit guard Chauncey Billups (right) tries to get around Portland guard Mo Williams during the first half. Damian Lilliard hit a shot late in overtime to lift the Trail Blazers.

AUBURN HILLS, Mich. — Damian Lillard’s spinning fadeaway with one-tenth of a second left in overtime lifted the Portland Trail Blazers to a 111-109 victory over the Detroit Pistons on Sunday night.


Lillard was guarded well by Rodney Stuckey as he tried to drive to the basket, but he was able to hit a tough fadeaway from about 8 feet for the win. Detroit couldn’t get off a shot before the buzzer.

LaMarcus Aldridge scored 27 points for Portland, which rallied from a 13-point deficit in the fourth quarter. Lillard finished with 23 points.

Josh Smith scored 31 points, his most since signing with the Pistons as a free agent in the off-season.

Moments before Lillard’s winner, Rodney Stuckey tied the game for Detroit with a shot from near the free throw line. Portland, which made 21 shots from 3-point range in Saturday’s rout of Philadelphia, went 7 of 26 on Sunday.

The Blazers trailed by 13 early in the fourth, but cut the deficit to 94-92 before Smith scored on the block while being fouled by Wesley Matthews. The three-point play pushed the lead to five, but Detroit couldn’t close out the game.

Matthews finally tied it with two free throws with 30.8 seconds remaining in regulation. Detroit had the ball with 1.1 seconds left, but Kyle Singler’s inbounds pass was stolen, sending the game to overtime.

The Blazers led by 11 early in the second quarter, but Detroit rallied behind Smith and fellow big men Greg Monroe and Andre Drummond to take a 51-50 lead into halftime.

Smith is shooting under 27 percent from 3-point range this season, and the presence of Monroe and Drummond has seemed only to encourage him to shoot more from the perimeter. But he attempted only two 3s on Sunday, and the Blazers couldn’t handle him in the post for most of the night.

Smith’s old-fashioned3-point play made it 75-66 in the third, and Detroit led 84-73 heading into the final period.

Detroit outscored Portland 68-42 in the paint, but the Blazers held the Pistons to 15 points in the fourth quarter and slowly chipped away at the lead.

Nicolas Batum scored 18 points for the Blazers, who fought Detroit’s tough front line almost evenly on the boards.

THUNDER: Kevin Durant had 28 points, nine rebounds and five assists, and Oklahoma City won its 12th consecutive home game to open the season, holding off the Orlando Magic for a 101-98 victory.

Russell Westbrook added 20 points, 12 rebounds and six assists for Oklahoma City, which has won six in a row overall and 14 of its past 15. The Thunder have beaten the Magic five consecutive times.

An 11-1 run near the end of the first half gave Oklahoma City control and the Thunder never trailed again, although Orlando rallied within two points in the final minute. Durant hit a free throw and Serge Ibaka blocked a shot by Nikola Vucevic in the final moments to preserve the win.

The Thunder’s 12-game home winning streak matches their second-longest since the franchise moved to Oklahoma City. The Thunder won 14 in a row at Chesapeake Energy Arena from January-March 2012.

SUSPENSIONS: Portland center Meyers Leonard and Philadelphia center Daniel Orton were each suspended for one game without pay by the NBA on Sunday for their altercation Saturday night.

Leonard initiated an altercation by slamming Orton to the floor, and Orton retaliated by elbowing Leonard in the mouth in the fourth quarter of Portland’s 139-105 victory in Philadelphia.

Leonard sat out Portland’s game at Detroit on Sunday, and Orton will miss Philadelphia’s game at Brooklyn tonight.


Thu, 08/17/2017 - 23:20

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