McCollum, Lillard help Blazers get past Memphis in OT

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LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. (AP) – CJ McCollum scored 33 points, working with Damian Lillard for 11 of Portland’s 16 overtime, and the Trail Blazers scored a desperately needed victory to resume their season by beating the Memphis Grizzlies 140- 135 on Friday.

Lillard finished with 29 points and nine assists as the Trail Blazers raised their hopes for a seventh consecutive playoff. Carmelo Anthony added 21 points while Portland moved in 2 games and a half from the Grizzlies for seat no. 8 in the Western Conference.

McCollum started quickly, scoring 19 points in the first half, and finished strong with two crucial points 3 in overtime. The first to open the overtime period gave Portland the lead forever, and added six assists.

Jaren Jackson Jr. had 33 points and rookie Ja Morant added 22 points and 11 assists for Memphis.

It certainly wasn’t cute. Portland was called for 36 fouls, sending Memphis to the free throw line 50 times. The Grizzlies drew 26 fouls and the teams joined by five technical fouls.

But it was a wild start to the resumption of the NBA season.

Memphis recovered from a 13-point third quarter deficit to take an 11-point lead, then gave it just as quickly. When the Grizzlies recovered to take an advantage of 112-103 with 6:01 remaining in order, it seemed that the Grizzlies could gain the lead in the standings.

Instead, Anthony’s 3 with 37.5 seconds remaining scored the score at 124 and Morant fell into a quick break of the last second, sending the game to overtime.

After McCollum broke the tie with opening 3, Gary Trent Jr. and McCollum followed with two other 3’s to make 135-124 and the Grizzlies failed to get three closer to the rest of the game.

TIP-INS

Grizzlies: They tied the single season franchise record with five games of 130 or more points. The brand was previously set up in 2006-07. … Morant made only one basket in the first half. … Brandon Clarke added 21 points and Dillon Brooks had 15. … Memphis is 0-28 when he shoots worse than his opponent this season.

Trail Blazers: drew the season with the Grizzlies. … Hassan Whiteside’s series of 14 consecutive double doubles has ended. The rebound n. League 2 scored seven points and took four rebounds. … McCollum did three 3s to give him 1,000 in his career, joining Lillard as the only player in franchise history to reach that mark. … Anthony had his 768th career in 20 points. He needs three to tie Wilt Chamberlain to the all-time number 8.

ARE BACK

The suspended season gave Portland the opportunity to recover and reconnect two injured starters in the formation: Jusuf Nurkic and Zach Collins.

It made a huge difference.

Nurkic made his seasonal debut and his first appearance in a regular season since he suffered a sinister left leg injury on March 25, 2019. Despite shooting only 5 out of 11 from the field, he had 18 points, nine rebounds and matched his career with six blocks.

Collins had left the end of October with an injured left shoulder. He had seven points and nine rebounds.

NEXT

Grizzlies: Continue their quest in the playoffs with another crucial game Sunday against San Antonio.

Trail Blazers: I hope to avoid a swept season on Sunday against Boston.

Other AP NBA: https://apnews.com/NBA and https://twitter.com/AP-Sports

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