After suffering a number of difficult losses this season, the Portland Trail Blazers finally created some good fortune of their own as CJ McCollum scored 32 points including the game-winning bucket with .3 seconds remaining to give the Blazers a much needed 114-113 road win Tuesday night in Dallas.
The Portland offense led by Damian Lillard got off to a hot start in the first half. Lillard scored 10 quick points as the Blazers raced to a 21-16 first quarter lead. The Blazers led 32-27 entering the second quarter, but the Mavericks would cut the lead to one at 39-38 with 7:48 to play in the half after Wesley Matthews made a technical free throw. The Blazers then closed out the half on a 25-15 run to take a 64-53 halftime lead. The Blazers shot 56.8% from the field in the half and dominated the glass with a 30-18 edge while holding the Mavericks to just 40% shooting.
The Mavericks would cut the Blazers lead to four at 86-82 entering the fourth quarter as they outscored the Blazers 29-22 in the third quarter with Portland shooting just 7-for-20 from the field.
The final period was a series of runs for both teams. After Dirk Nowitzki hit three free throws to give the Mavericks a 89-88 lead with 10:30 to play, the Blazers went on a 13-0 run in just over three-minutes to push their lead to 101-89 with 7:18 to play.
The Mavericks responded with a 13-0 run of their own to reclaim the lead at 102-101 with 4:15 to play. the final four-minutes of the game would feature nine lead-changes. After a Nowitzki three pointer gave Dallas a 108-107 lead with :38 seconds to play, McCollum responded with an 11-foot jumper to get the Blazers the lead once again at 109-108 with :34 seconds to play. Devin Harris responded for the Mavericks by hitting a runner to push the Mavericks ahead by a point at 110-109 with :19 seconds remaining.
After a Trailblazers :20 second timeout, McCollum delivered a strong scoring drive off the window and converted an and-one opportunity to give the Blazers a two-point lead at 112-110 with :12 seconds remaining. With no timeouts, Dallas hurried down the floor and found Nowitzki once again for a 24-foot three pointer which put Dallas ahead for the final time at 113-112 with 3.9 remaining on the clock. After a timeout, McCollum found magic one last time by hitting a floater with .3 seconds remaining on the clock to give the Blazers a much needed road win.
The win evens the season series with Dallas at 2-2, which could end up being critical at the end of the season as the Blazers battle for the 8th and final playoff spot in the West.
Portland (23-30) got a major boost on offense from their backcourt tonight. Lillard finished with 29 and McCollum had a game-high 32 points. Mason Plumlee finished with 12 points and 15 rebounds and Al-Farouq Aminu came off the bench to add a double-double with 12 points and 11 rebounds. The Blazers dominated the glass tonight with a 55-30 edge including 18 offensive rebounds.
Dallas (20-32) had four players in double-figures. Dirk Nowitzki scored 25 points, Harrison Barnes led the Mavericks with 26 points, and Wesley Matthews added 23 points and 5 rebounds.
The Blazers lost forward Evan Turner to a broken metacarpal bone in his right hand in the third quarter. Turner would not return to the game, and there was no further news on his status after the game. this injury comes at a bad time for Portland as Turner has played much better since being inserted into the starting lineup by Head Coach Terry Stotts.
Blazers at Mavericks Highlights: