Damian Lillard and the Portland Trail Blazers took a business-like approach to Game 4 of their first-round series against the Oklahoma City Thunder, knowing what was at stake.
The Blazers won the first two games at home, but took a road loss in Game 3, and could’ve risked a potential swing of momentum by losing Game 4 with the series even at two apiece.
Neither Lillard nor his teammates had any interest in responding to the constant barking by OKC players after a Game 3 loss, but they rather focused on the task at hand and regained control of this series:
“We had a business-like mentality,” said Lillard, according to Ben Golliver of The Washington Post. “We’re not talking to nobody but ourselves. The refs can call it how they want to call it. Whenever the crowd gets into it, we’ll do what we do. I was proud we could stick to that.”
The backcourt of Lillard and CJ McCollum combined for a scorching 51 points, outshooting the Thunder duo of Russell Westbrook and Paul George, even after taking less shots.
The Blazers’ star guards have proven to be more efficient throughout this series, and they were again in Game 4, combining for a strong 9-of-17 from beyond the arc, which made all the difference as part of a 42.9% shooting night from deep as a team.
Lillard has learned from experience and knows there will be no trash talk coming his way if the Blazers win this series and dominate, something he could help make happen by closing out a Game 5 at the Moda Center on Tuesday.