Blazers defeat Lakers in Game 1

After sinking a deep 3-pointer midway through the final quarter, Damian Lillard did a little dance and teammate Jusuf Nurkic pointed to his wrist. This was Dame Time, playoff edition.

“Every game since we’ve been here has been a playoff game. So that prepared us for a game like this,” Lillard said. “It’s only one win. I’m happy to be here competing in the playoffs again, but we’ve got to move on to the next one.”

Lillard had 34 points and the Portland Trail Blazers spoiled LeBron James’ first playoff appearance for the Los Angeles Lakers with a 100-93 triumph on Tuesday night in Game 1 of the teams’ playoff series.

James had 23 points, 17 rebounds and 16 assists, becoming the first player to have as many points, rebounds and assists in the playoffs. It was his 24th postseason triple-double and his assists were a career playoff high.

“We had a couple of breakdowns, which you can’t have down the stretch, especially against a team like Portland,” James stated.

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Jusuf Nurkic had 16 points and 15 rebounds for Portland, which led by as many as 16 points in the first half.

The Lakers, making their first playoff appearance since 2013, narrowed the advantage to 57-56 at the break and stayed close the rest of the game.

Trailing 78-75 going into the final period, the Lakers tied it at 78 on Kyle Kuzma’s 3-pointer. James’ layup gave Los Angeles the lead, and Kuzma added a pair of free throws and another layup to extend it to 84-78.

Lillard’s 3-pointer tied it again at 87 with 5:46 to go and CJ McCollum’s floater gave Portland the lead.

Lillard said afterward he danced after his 3 because the song Blow the Whistle was played in the bubble arena, which Lillard called the “East Oakland anthem.”

After Danny Green’s layup tied it again for Los Angeles, Lillard nailed another 3-pointer. Anthony Davis’ dunk got the Lakers within 95-93, but Gary Trent Jr. made a 3-pointer that put Portland up 98-93 before Nurkic dunked to seal it.

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