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Damian Lillard converts game-winning three-point play in Trail Blazers-Pelicans

Damian Lillard in Trail Blazers-Pelicans

NEW ORLEANS, LOUISIANA - FEBRUARY 17: Damian Lillard #0 of the Portland Trail Blazers shoots over Lonzo Ball #2 of the New Orleans Pelicans and Eric Bledsoe #5 of the New Orleans Pelicans during the second quarter of an NBA game at Smoothie King Center on February 17, 2021 in New Orleans, Louisiana. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)

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The Trail Blazers and Pelicans spent the final 18 minutes within five points each other.

So, of course Damian Lillard stepped up in the tight game.

Lillard – the NBA’s most clutch player – converted a three-point play with 16.5 seconds left. That stood as the game-winner in Portland’s 126-124 victory Wednesday when the Trail Blazers got a stop on the other end.

With yet another signature moment and superb all-around performance, Lillard continues to build his MVP case. He finished with 43 points and 16 assists – a stat line matched by just James Harden (twice), Trae Young, Isiah Thomas and Oscar Robertson (thrice).

Portland has won six straight, all without C.J. McCollum, Jusuf Nurkic and Zach Collins. Lillard has stepped up to deliver whatever his team needs.

Due to weather in Oklahoma City on Tuesday, the Trail Blazers flew to New Orleans today and went straight from the plane to the arena. But Lillard set a tone by scoring 15 points in the first eight minutes.

Zion Williamson (36 points) kept the Pelicans in the game.

Yet, it was Dame Time in the end.