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Lillard Breaks Records with 39 Points as the Eastern Conference Wins the NBA All-Star Game

In the 73rd NBA All-Star Game (Monday Manila time), Damian Lillard put on a spectacular show, showcasing his scoring prowess and helping the Eastern Conference to a record 211-186 triumph against the Western Conference.

With 32 points from Tyrese Haliburton of the Indiana Pacers and 36 points from Jaylen Brown of the Boston Celtics coming off the bench, the East easily defeated the West’s 2016 team scoring record of 196 points in the All-Star Game.

After shooting a game-high 11 3-pointers out of 23 tries, ending 14 of 26 overall, and sinking two half-court shots, Lillard of the Milwaukee Bucks was named the game’s Most Valuable Player.

Reflecting on the achievement, Lillard, an eight-time NBA All-Star, expressed, “It’s an honor. I’ve been here a few times, so to be able to have this kind of accomplishment is special.”

The East’s captain, Giannis Antetokounmpo, who had 23 points and won the 2021 All-Star Game MVP, anticipated Lillard’s standout performance, stating, “I knew he was going for it. When he has that twitch in his eye, when he’s locked in, you’ve got to pass him the ball and just get out of his way.”

The game showcased breathtaking slam dunks, remarkable passes, and impressive shotmaking by elite players from around the world, creating an entertaining atmosphere for the sellout crowd in Indianapolis.

“Everybody played hard. We had fun,” said Antetokounmpo. “The ball was moving. We made a lot of threes. We scored a lot of points. I’m happy.”

Despite the West’s efforts, including a standout performance by Karl-Anthony Towns with a game-high 50 points, the East dominated, shattering the previous record with a combined 397 points. The East shot 56.8% from the floor, making a record 42 3-pointers in 97 attempts.

Lillard’s jaw-dropping mid-court shot in the third quarter set the tone for the East’s victory, closing the period with a 16-4 run and securing a 160-136 lead entering the fourth.

Haliburton’s impressive display, sinking 10 3-pointers in 14 attempts, helped the East reach the milestone of 200 points with 87 seconds to play.

The East’s 13-0 run early in the second quarter established a commanding lead, paving the way for a 104-89 halftime advantage.

The 39-year-old LeBron James, a four-time NBA champion and MVP, made his record-breaking 20th All-Star appearance, but his performance was limited by a left ankle injury. He finished the game with just eight points in 14 minutes and missed the second half. Due to injuries, reigning MVP Joel Embiid and Julius Randle were unable to participate in the East; Trae Young and Scottie Barnes took their places.

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