NBA: Lillard's return sparks Blazers to win over Wizards

Field Level Media via Reuters

Posted at Mar 05 2020 03:07 PM

NBA: Lillard's return sparks Blazers to win over Wizards 1
Portland Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard (0) drives against Washington Wizards forward Isaac Bonga (17) at Moda Center. Troy Wayrynen, USA TODAY Sports/Reuters

Star guard Damian Lillard returned from a groin injury to contribute 22 points and five assists, helping the Portland Trail Blazers post a 125-104 home victory over the Washington Wizards on Wednesday night.

Carmelo Anthony scored a team-high 25 points as four Trail Blazers topped 20 points. Hassan Whiteside registered 24 points, 16 rebounds and four blocked shots, and CJ McCollum added 22 points, six rebounds and five assists.

Lillard played 32 minutes and drained four 3-pointers in his first outing since being injured against the Memphis Grizzlies on Feb. 12.

Bradley Beal recorded 29 points, six rebounds and six assists but couldn't prevent Washington from losing for the sixth time in eight games.

Beal stretched his franchise-record streak of consecutive 25-point outings to 20. He fell one point shy of scoring 30 or more points in a 10th straight road game.

Davis Bertans added 21 points and Rui Hachimura had 11 for the Wizards, who shot 38.8 percent from the field and were 11 of 35 from 3-point range.

Trevor Ariza scored 15 points for the Trail Blazers, who shot 51.9 percent from the floor, including 13 of 31 from behind the arc.

The Wizards trailed by 21 entering the fourth quarter but made a charge with 10 straight points to move within 104-93 with 7:38 remaining.

However, Portland fought off the challenge. Anthony knocked down a 3-pointer to make it 113-96 with 4:59 left. Ariza added two free throws, and Whiteside tipped in a miss and added two foul shots to push the lead to 23 with 3:21 left as the Trail Blazers sealed the win.

Anthony scored 20 points to help Portland hold a 72-61 halftime lead. Beal had 21 first-half points.

The Trail Blazers led, 37-30, after the opening quarter and began to pull away with eight straight points in the second quarter. Whiteside's dunk gave Portland a 64-51 advantage with 3:02 left before the hosts settled for the 11-point lead at the break.

Portland scored 13 of the first 16 points in the third quarter with Lillard knocking down a 3-pointer to make it 85-64 with 8:28 left. The advantage reached 24 later in the period before the Trail Blazers took a 100-79 bulge into the final stanza.

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