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Damian Lillard MVP: All-Star scores 50 again for Portland Trail Blazers

Lillard Pacers
All-Star point guard Damian Lillard just had another amazing game on January 26. Pic credit: Portland Trail Blazers/YouTube

Damian Lillard is doing MVP stuff for the Portland Trail Blazers this season. Though he is a dark horse candidate for the NBA Most Valuable Player Award, he has come on strong over the past week.

On Sunday night, Lillard put up 50 points against the Indiana Pacers. It concluded an extremely impressive week of games for the Blazers’ All-Star point guard.

Damian Lillard game log

Last Monday, the Blazers hosted the Golden State Warriors in a game that would go to overtime. Lillard took the team on his back and helped them to a 129-124 victory.

Lillard finished that game with 61 points, 10 rebounds, and seven assists. It also showed that he was just getting started on the week.

Thursday against the Dallas Mavericks, Lillard posted 47 points, eight assists, and six rebounds. The game wound up in the loss column, but that wasn’t Lillard’s fault, as he shot 57.1 percent from the field.

Then, playing a home game against the Pacers on Sunday, Lillard had 50 points, 13 assists, and six rebounds as the Blazers won 139-129.

Damian Lillard: Player of Week. Maybe MVP?

Over those last three games, Lillard has scored 158 points for the Blazers. That’s a per-game average of nearly 53 points a night. It’s an amazing accomplishment.

Players just don’t average 50 points a game.

In that same span, Lillard posted 28 assists and 22 rebounds. So, for the week, Damian Lillard has averaged 52.7 points, 9.3 assists, and 7.3 rebounds per game. Those are numbers good enough for Player of the Week honors and NBA MVP consideration.

NBA MVP candidates

It’s a long NBA season, and there are a lot of players in the running for the MVP award.

That includes LeBron James of the Los Angeles Lakers, Giannis Antetokounmpo of the Milwaukee Bucks, Kawhi Leonard of the Los Angeles Clippers, James Harden of the Houston Rockets, Luka Doncic of the Dallas Mavericks, and Jimmy Butler of the Miami Heat.

As of today, James (25.3 points, 10.7 assists, and 7.7 rebounds) and Antetokounmpo (30.0 points, 12.9 rebounds, and 5.6 assists) appear to be leading the race. Their teams have the two best records in the league, and the stars continue to play amazing basketball.

But Damian Lillard is starting to move up the ladder.

After that amazing week, Lillard is now averaging 28.8 points, 7.7 assists, and 4.2 rebounds per game. He now has a PER (Player Efficiency Rating) of 26.31 that has him moving up into the ranks of the elites this season.

Here’s the rub for Lillard: The Blazers are not in a playoff spot. If the Blazers fail to make it to the 2020 NBA Playoffs, despite all of these heroics from Lillard, he has no shot of remaining in consideration for the MVP.

If, however, Lillard continues to play out of his mind, and the Blazers start moving up the Western Conference standings, then anything is possible. At the very least, Lillard has proven he needs to be a guard on an All-NBA team this year.

Will the front office get Lillard some more help? While the Lakers get linked to Derrick Rose and both the Lakers and Clippers get linked to point guard Darren Collison, the Blazers have been relatively quiet as the team battles back from a series of serious injuries.

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