With 6:05 left in the third quarter, an altercation occurred between both team’s starting point guards, Damian Lillard and D’Angelo Russell. They confronted each other, exchanging words before cooler heads prevailed. They were separated from each other immediately, with both players receiving technical fouls for their efforts.
After the game, Lillard discussed what led to the scuffle. He accused the 20-year-old of playing dirty, including their first meeting of the season, admitting that their altercation spurred him on to play better on the night.
“He poked the bear and you seen what happened the rest of the game.”
“Since last game, he’s been doing little slick elbows, and I play the game clean. I’m from Oakland. I ain’t with that extra stuff and nobody can just do what they want to me.”
The two-time All-Star also shared what he told Russell and made it known that he won’t back down from him.
“I got called for a foul to start the third quarter for reaching in, but when I reached in the only reason there was contact is because his elbow came up again. After he blocked my shot, I was walking to my spot, and I felt like he went out of his way to get that elbow in there again. And I told him, ‘That ain’t gonna fly.’ And I wasn’t interested in anything else that was said after that. We ain’t going to do it on the court so we’ll be in the back and whatever happens, happens.”
It will be interesting to see how both players will conduct themselves in their next matchup. The Lakers and Blazers are scheduled to play two more times this season with the next one on January 25 at the Moda Center in downtown Portland.