Portland Trail Blazers Rookie Damian Lillard Nothing Short of Sensational

By John Raffel
Steve Dykes-USA TODAY Sports

Damian Lillard has been enjoying a unique trend during his NBA rookie season with the Portland Trail Blazers.

He scores big when it comes to playing outstanding opponents.

Outstanding opposition brings out the best in Lillard. His first season isn’t completed yet and there’s been several examples. He’s averaging 18.3 points and 6.5 assists per game.

Lillard scored 27 points in mid-November against the Houston Rockets and the next month was 11-of-22 and scored 29 points in a win over San Antonio. But he usually performs well against the struggling teams, hitting 25 points against the Phoenix Suns.

He had a fabulous game in mid-January against the Golden State Warriors with 37 points after 15-of-25 shooting from the floor.

The 33 points came in a loss to the Miami Heat. But Lillard had a sensational evening with 10 of 18 from the floor and 10-of-11 from the free-throw line.

His 85.6 percent clip from the charity stripe speaks for itself, Lillard needs to take it to the basket more often, although the Blazers have been demonstrating their desire to make this happen.

The Blazers are battling for the eighth and final playoff spot in the West . But Lillard will make it tough on those opponents trying to get into the postseason. Portland is in the very competitive West conference, which has been tough on the Blazers and their bid to be among the top teams in the West side of the NBA. Lillard has emerged as one of the best rookies in the West and not many teams are anxious to face the Blazers because of him, especially if they badly need to beat Portland for playoff positioning.

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