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Portland Trail Blazers

This Date in NBA History (Nov. 8): Damian Lillard records first career 60-point game, sets multiple franchise records

On Nov. 8, 2019, Damian Lillard went off for a then-career-high and franchise-record 60 points against Kyrie Irving and the Brooklyn Nets.

At the time, the performance was Lillard's sixth career game with at least 50 points - also a franchise record. Playing 41 minutes, he also recorded five assists and four rebounds while shooting 19-of-33 from the field and a perfect 15-of-15 from the free-throw line.

The performance, which included 16 fourth-quarter points went in vain as it came in yet another close loss for the Portland Trail Blazers to begin the 2019-20 season. After the first nine games, all of Portland's six losses were by single digits, including this one.

"It's fine," Lillard said about his 60 points coming in a loss. "It's whatever. Anytime you set records it's obviously good. I guess it's not as fun losing."

For the Nets, Irving (33) and reserve guard Spencer Dinwiddie combined (34) for 67 points. The former of the two guards came up clutch, scoring eight of the team's last 14 points.

With D'Angelo Russell dropping 52 earlier in the day, Nov. 8, 2019, became the first time since December 23rd, 2005 - Allen Iverson (53) and Vince Carter (51) - that multiple NBA players had scored at least 50 points.

Lillard's 60-point game against the Nets would be the first of three such games he would record over the course of the elongated 2019-20 season. He would later score 61 against the Golden State Warriors on Jan 20, 2020 and again against the Dallas Mavericks on Aug. 12, 2020. The latter of the two performances brought his tally of 60-point games to three in the season, putting him alongside an all-time great of the league.

Other notable events on Nov. 8

  • In 2019, D'Angelo Russell, as a member of the Golden State Warriors, scores a career-high 52 points in an overtime thriller against the Minnesota Timberwolves. The Warriors came up short 119-125 as the Timberwolves sparked by Andrew Wiggins' 40 points - a season-high.
  • In 1978, the Philadelphia 76ers and the New Jersey Nets began a game where the final 17:50 minutes would be played later on March 23rd, 1979. The delay or postponement was due to a protest being upheld. At the time of the game's tip-off, Harvey Catchings and Ralph Simpson played for the 76ers and Eric Money and Al Skinner played for the Nets but when both teams faced-off again five months later, they were traded to the opposing teams. Thus, it was for the first time in NBA history and likely in professional sports, that a player represented both teams in the same game.
  • In 1959, Elgin Baylor scored a mammoth 64 points in a 136-115 win for the Los Angeles Lakers against the Boston Celtics. To this date, it is the most points scored against a defending champion. At the time of this game, it was the most scored in a single NBA game.

Recent game-winning buzzer-beaters on Nov. 8

Bojan Bogdanovic vs. Milwaukee Bucks in 2019

Marc Gasol vs. Denver Nuggets in 2016

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