Despite putting up 60 points on a career night in Portland on Friday night for the Blazers, Damian Lillard and co. could still not figure out a way to defeat the visiting Brooklyn Nets. Not only did Lillard set a personal best with the performance, but it was also the most points scored by a player in the history of the franchise as well. Unfortunately for them, it ended in yet another loss, dropping to a 119-115 defeat. As is so often the case when one player plays like that, they end up not being enough as it’s just too much being asked of one individual. Two Nets- Kyrie Irving and Spencer Dinwiddie- combined to post 67 points (33 and 34, respectively), which more than canceled out Lillard’s ridiculous showing. Lillard was phenomenal from the floor and the free throw line, making 19 of 33 from the field and all 15 of his free throw attempts. It got to the point that Nets head coach Kenny Atkinson said they tried multiple defensive schemes to stop him. But it was to no avail. In the end, it was only their own potent offensive attack that allowed them to go to 4-4 on the season and to hand Portland its fourth consecutive loss.
There is absolutely no secret that the Golden State Warriors are not the team- by a long shot- that they used to be in 2019/20. Kevin Durant is gone, of course, Klay Thompson is out injured, Steph Curry is out, too, and Draymond Green is dealing with his own set of problems. That leaves former Nets start D’Angelo Russell to step up and fill the huge chasm left by all of them. He did his best on Friday night to do that, putting up 52 points, but it was ultimately too little as the Minnesota Timberwolves claimed a 125-119 win in overtime over the west coasters. Russell’s career best night was upstaged by Andrew Wiggins for the T-Wolves. Wiggins scored 40 points, with a massive couple coming in the closing stages of regulation as he tied the game. That made basket put them into the extra period, and they ended up outscoring the Warriors 15-9 in the five minutes allotted. The Warriors fell to 2-7 with the result, while the Timberwolves improved to 5-3.
The Utah Utes made history on Friday night when they welcomed Mississippi Valley State to town. Their win, which ended up at a final score of 143-49, was the largest ever by a team against another Division I opponent since 1939. The 94-point margin surpassed the previous record, which had been 91 points and held since 1995 when Tulsa defeated Prairie View. Timmy Allen had 26 points to lead the way, while two other players, Both Zach and Rylan Jones, had a triple-doubles.