Damian Lillard scored 25 points in the second half of the Portland Trail Blazers (1-0) 85-82 come-from-behind win over the New Orleans Hornets (0-1) on Sunday night at UNLV's Thomas & Mack Center in 2012 NBA Summer League action. Portland outscored New Orleans 56-36 in the final 20 minutes to erase a 17-point first-half deficit.
The Trail Blazers led for just under two minutes in the opening quarter before finally regaining the lead for good off a 3-pointer from Jon Diebler with 8:12 left in the contest. The lead ballooned to as much as six points on two separate occasions in the final moments of the affair.
Portland came out of the break with the hot hand after shooting only 29.7 percent (11-for-37) in the first half from the field. The offense made 17 of 33 attempts (51.5 percent) in the second half with seven coming from behind the arc and 15 points as a result of made free throws.
Lillard, the sixth overall pick in the 2012 NBA Draft, had scored only four points on 2-of-10 shooting in the opening 20 minutes before ending the game connecting on 9-of-21. He also added four rebounds and four assists to his line for the night.
Portland's Luke Babbitt and Meyers Leonard, who was drafted 11th overall, had double-doubles. Babbitt combined 19 points and 10 boards for the feat, while Leonard had 14 and 11, respectively. Nolan Smith chipped in 10 points to give the Trail Blazers a quartet of scorers in double figures.
In the first quarter, the Hornets used a 12-0 run in the final 2:32 to turn a four-point deficit at the 16-12 mark into an eight-point lead after 10 minutes of action. Matthew Bryan-Amaning was the main catalyst behind the scoring stretch, as she contributed five of the 12 points.
New Orleans kept the pedal down through the first half by outscoring Portland by nine points, 22-13, to take a 17-point lead into intermission. Xavier Henry and Denzel Bowles had six points apiece to help build distance between the two teams.
Bowles (18 points, 12 rebounds) and Lance Thomas (12, 11) had double-doubles for the Hornets in a losing effort. Austin Rivers, the 10th overall selection, pitched in 14 points, while Brian Roberts had 13 and Xavier Henry added 11.
New Orleans returns to action on Monday night with a 7:30 pm showing against the Milwaukee Bucks in the Thomas & Mack Center, while Portland must wait until Tuesday to face Houston at 5:00 pm in the Cox Pavilion.
|Fast Break Pts:||2||2|
|Points in the Paint:||36||32|
|New Orleans Hornets (0-1)|
|J. Allen||DNP - Coach's Decision|
|M. Koshwal||DNP - Coach's Decision|
|M. Thompson||DNP - Coach's Decision|
|40.3%||8.3%||79.4%||team rebs: 10||total to: 15|
|Portland Trail Blazers (1-0)|
|S. Christopherson||DNP - Coach's Decision|
|G. Edwards||DNP - Coach's Decision|
|S. Muldrow||DNP - Coach's Decision|
|L. Reed III||DNP - Coach's Decision|
|E. Williams||DNP - Coach's Decision|
|40.0%||33.3%||71.4%||team rebs: 6||total to: 16|