Damian Lillard on Friday night scored a career-high 51 points and had seven assists and six steals to lead the Portland Trail Blazers to a stunningly dominant 137-105 victory over the NBA-leading Golden State Warriors.
C.J. McCollum added 21 points and seven assists for Portland in the first game after the All-Star break for both teams. The Trail Blazers have won four straight and nine of 10 to improve to 28-27, the first time they have been over .500 since they were 3-2 on Nov. 4 last year.
Stephen Curry led the Warriors (48-5) with 31 points and five assists. Draymond Green added 14 points, 12 rebounds and eight assists, but also had nine turnovers. Golden State had won 11 straight.
Photo: Steve Dykes-USA TODAY
The Blazers used a stifling defense throughout the game, but especially in the third quarter, when they forced the defending champions into 13 turnovers. Portland led 104-79 after three and the lead could have been bigger if the Blazers had been able to convert more of those turnovers into points.
SPURS 119, LAKERS 113
In Los Angeles, Tony Parker scored 25 points in San Antonio’s victory over Los Angeles in the final matchup between Kobe Bryant and longtime Western Conference adversary Tim Duncan.
Bryant is retiring at season’s end, with the Lakers way out of the playoff picture at 11-45. Bryant and Duncan have each led their clubs to five NBA titles and have at least one league Most Valuable Player (MVP) award to their credit — in addition to MVPs of the NBA Finals and NBA All-Star Games.
Bryant had 25 points in 29 minutes, and Duncan finished with 12 points and 13 rebounds to help San Antonio complete a four-game season sweep. The Spurs (46-9) are three games behind defending champions Golden State in the race for the league’s best record.
PACERS 101, THUNDER 98
In Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, Monta Ellis scored 27 points to help Indiana beat Oklahoma City.
Paul George had 22 points and 10 assists, Ian Mahinmi matched a career high with 19 points and grabbed 11 rebounds, and Myles Turner had 16 points and a career-high six blocks for the Pacers.
George Hill had nine points and nine assists and matched a career high with 11 rebounds for Indiana. The Pacers have won six of nine.
Kevin Durant had 31 points and eight rebounds, and Russell Westbrook had 23 points and a career-high 18 assists for the Thunder. Oklahoma City had won 14 of 16.
NETS 109, KNICKS 98
In New York, Brook Lopez scored 33 points as Brooklyn beat New York to hand the Knicks their seventh straight loss.
The Nets buried the Knicks under two big second-half runs and put six players in double figures in a strong showing in front of new general manager Sean Marks, who was hired on Thursday.
Lopez shot 13 of 23 from the field and added eight rebounds in dominating twin brother Robin, who had 10 points and seven boards.
Carmelo Anthony had 22 points, seven rebounds and six assists for the Knicks. Interim coach Kurt Rambis continues to say the playoffs are the Knicks’ goal, but they might have blown any shot of that by losing 11 of their past 12 games since they were 22-22. They have dropped both games under Rambis after Derek Fisher was fired on Feb. 8.
In other results, it was:
‧ Bulls 116, Raptors 106
‧ Rockets 116, Suns 100
‧ Heat 115, Hawks 111
‧ Magic 110, Mavericks 104, OT
‧ Wizards 98, Pistons 86
‧ Hornets 98, Bucks 95
‧ Grizzlies 109, Timberwolves 104
‧ Kings 116, Nuggets 110
‧ Pelicans 121, 76ers 114
‧ Jazz 111, Celtics 93
Chen Jifang hits the gym for at least two hours every day and has the physique to prove it. At nearly 70, she is being held up as a shining example as China orders its vast population to get fit and lose the bulge. The grandmother from Shanghai has become a minor celebrity in in the past few months after her newfound and unlikely love for working out made national headlines. After becoming a gym regular in December 2018, Chen lost 14kg in three months, and now sports the kind of flat stomach and toned muscles that people decades younger aspire to. She
ANOTHER SCANDAL: Searches focused on several riders, including Dayer Quintana, a source said, while the two being held were reportedly a doctor and physiotherapist French police on Monday detained two people as part of an investigation into suspected doping in the Arkea-Samsic team at this year’s Tour de France, prosecutors announced. The probe is the first significant one in several years for the repeatedly scandal-hit tour, which on Sunday wrapped up in Paris with a victory for 21-year-old Tadej Pogacar, who became the youngest winner in more than a century. Prosecutor Dominique Laurens in Marseille said in a statement that an investigation was being carried out into a “small part” of France-based Arkea-Samsic, without specifying who had been placed in custody. Laurens added that the two
Former MLB pitcher Wang Wei-chung has signed the biggest contract with a local team in Taiwan’s professional baseball history, the Wei Chuan Dragons said yesterday. The 28-year-old left-hander signed a five-year US$2.08 million contract with the Dragons, team chairman Hsu Wen-fang told a news conference. It is the biggest contract in the CPBL’s 31-year history, surpassing a three-year, US$1.36 million deal Lin Chih-sheng signed in 2016 with the CTBC Brothers. Although the overall value of Wang’s deal set a new record, his average monthly salary of NT$990,000 (US$33,886) is lower than Lin’s pay of NT$1.2 million per month in 2017
TAIWANESE TO PLAY: Jason Jung faces Frederico Coria in the men’s singles first round today, while in the women’s singles, Hsieh Su-wei is to take on Barbara Haas Novak Djokovic is to renew his love-hate relationship with Roland Garros in the knowledge that it is himself rather than seemingly unsettled 12-time champion Rafael Nadal who could pose the greatest threat to winning a second Paris title and 18th Grand Slam crown. The only man to beat Djokovic this year is Djokovic after the Serb’s hair-trigger temper prompted a sensational disqualification from the US Open. The 33-year-old arrives in the French capital with a 31-1 record this year after his New York brain-fade was followed by a record 36th Masters title in Rome. Djokovic’s 2016 triumph at Roland Garros allowed him to