Damian Lillard on series-clinching buzzer-beater: ‘The last word’
Damian Lillard hit a game-winning shot for the ages on Tuesday night to propel the Portland Trail Blazers into the Western Conference semifinals.
Lillard’s cutthroat, cold-blooded 37-foot buzzer-beater that sealed the Trail Blazers’ series-clinching 118-115 Game 5 victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder left the NBA world utterly speechless. The Blazers hero nevertheless had plenty to say about his dagger after the miraculous win.
With the game tied 115-115 and Lillard with the ball near midcourt and less than six seconds remaining on the clock, the star dribbled to find his spot and made the most clutch shot of his career, one that slipped through the net as the clock hit 0.0.
Damian Lillard (50 PTS) buries the three for the #TissotBuzzerBeater and the @trailblazers advance to the Western Conference Semifinals with the 118-115 Game 5 victory! #ThisIsYourTime #RipCity#NBAPlayoffs pic.twitter.com/cVqLJkHLR4— NBA (@NBA) April 24, 2019
I’ve never seen anything like it. QUADCAM: pic.twitter.com/n0Luq00tRs— Timothy Burke (@bubbaprog) April 24, 2019
“It was a great feeling when it left my hands,” Lillard said after the game, via ESPN. “It felt good.”
“When it left my hands, it felt good…”@Dame_Lillard reflects on his heroics to clinch the @trailblazers‘ Round 1! #RipCity #NBAPlayoffs pic.twitter.com/fZHvWvqqsC— NBA (@NBA) April 24, 2019
Lillard scored a franchise-record 50 points in the win. He joins Bob Cousy, Bob Pettit, Wilt Chamberlain, Sam Jones, Michael Jordan and Charles Barkley as the only players in NBA history to score 50 points in a game in which their team clinched a series, per NBA stats.
Lillard further burgeoned the already-legendary performance by posting a historic stat line.
50 PTS.— NBA.com/Stats (@nbastats) April 24, 2019
10 3PM. @Dame_Lillard is the only player in #NBAPlayoffs history to record at least 50 PTS, 5 REB, 5 AST & 10 3PM! #RipCity pic.twitter.com/lpndnX0625
Lillard opened up about the epic performance and what perhaps inspired it after the game.
“The game, the series was over and that was it,” Lillard said. “And I was just waving goodbye to them. I think after Game 3, Dennis Schroder was out there pointing to his wrist, they was out there doing all these celebrations and doing all these stuff. We kept our composure and after one win that’s what they decided to do. And we was just like, ‘OK, what we want to do is win four games.’ And then when we win those four games there’s not going to be nothing to talk about. So that’s what that was.
“There’s been a lot of back and forth, a lot of talk and all this stuff, and that was the last word. That was having the last word.”
#PhantomCam #NBAPlayoffs#RipCity pic.twitter.com/ltFh24US6Q— NBA (@NBA) April 24, 2019
Having the last word, indeed.