Lillard: Trail Blazers' quadruple-overtime win 'craziest game I've been a part of'
Damian Lillard said the Portland Trail Blazers' spirit came to the fore in a quadruple-overtime win over the Denver Nuggets that he called "the craziest game I've ever been a part of".
Game 3 of the Western Conference semi-final series proved to be an epic, with Portland finally emerging victorious at Moda Center 140-137 in the first NBA playoff contest to reach a fourth overtime period since 1953.
Rodney Hood sunk the game-winning three and Lillard, who scored 28 points, hailed the Trail Blazers' character.
"That's the craziest game I've ever been a part of," the guard told the team's courtside reporter.
"Each overtime it seemed like we come out with a five-point lead, then they go up. Then next overtime it reversed, we just kept flip-flopping. Each team just kept giving the other team life. We were just allowing the game to continue - both teams.
"Coach [Terry Stotts] said at half-time, 'It's going to come down to who's gonna dig the deepest'.
"Everybody was out there tired, fatigued, a long game, and I thought we dug a little deeper tonight."
Lillard felt the will to win on home court was a driving factor for Portland too.
Asked if the team was running on adrenaline, he replied: "Adrenaline, pride. You look up at the scoreboard and you're thinking about how you're going to feel after the game is over.
"We want to protect the home floor, we want to get his win. I think everybody showed that."
It could prove to be a pivotal victory, with a fatigued Denver team having already gone all the way to a Game 7 in the last series with the San Antonio Spurs.
"[It's] huge," Lillard added. "Game 3 at home, we split on their floor. These are the ones you've got to have. You've got to protect your home floor.
"They made us work for it and I'm proud of how our team responded."
The two teams meet again on Sunday in Game 4.