Blazers guard Damian Lillard leaves game vs. Clippers, return uncertain
Portland Trail Blazers point guard Damian Lillard left Monday’s game against the Los Angeles Clippers early in the 2nd half with “abdominal pain,” according to the team.
Lillard started on Monday, played 17 minutes and scored seven points on 3-of-8 shooting. According to Blazers play-by-play man, Lillard was playing through a stomach flu. Lillard was taken out of the game after being unable to get up and down the court. Even before he was taken out of the game, Lillard was clearly struggling to play.
Lillard hasn’t missed a game in his four year career with Monday being his 264th consecutive start. If his condition doesn’t improve quickly, that streak could be in jeopardy Tuesday night when the Blazers take on Wesley Matthews and the Dallas Mavericks.
UPDATE 10:40: According to this audio from Trail Blazers reporter Casey Holdahl, Lillard threw up in the locker room after the game, saying that he believes it was something he ate at the team hotel. Lillard told reporters in Los Angeles that it’s too early to tell about his availability tomorrow against the Dallas Mavericks.
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Lillard leads the Blazers in scoring at 25.4 points per game, which is good for sixth in the league. Lillard is also sixth in the league in assists per game, averaging over seven a night. Lillard is also one of the NBA leaders in 3-point shooting and minutes played while posting the highest usage rate of his career.
It’s good news for the Blazers that it’s not serious, but it’s going to be very tough sledding for them without his creation. The Blazers aren’t alone on the injury front as Chris Paul left Monday’s game towards the end of the third quarter with an rib injury. The Blazers scored 38 points in the 2nd half.
Lillard’s status will likely be updated just before Tuesday’s game but we’ll be sure to cover any developments on that front as they come.