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George's 43 points not enough as Pacers fall in Portland
Portland, OR (SportsNetwork.com) - Portland took Paul George's best shot, but the Trail Blazers proved they have a closer of their own.
Damian Lillard scored 14 of his 26 points in the fourth quarter and the Portland Trail Blazers defeated the Indiana Pacers, 106-102, on Monday night.
Lillard was just 4-of-12 shooting through three quarters before coming alive in the fourth. George netted 17 of his career-high 43 points in the final frame.
George nailed a pair of treys to whittle the Pacers deficit to 98-96 with 1:37 on the clock, but the cold-blooded Lillard answered with a three at the other end and Indiana didn't cut the gap below three the rest of the way.
George hit his fifth 3-pointer of the quarter with 10.4 seconds left to trim the bulge to 105-102, but Nicolas Batum split a pair of foul shots to seal the outcome.
LaMarcus Aldridge added 28 points and 10 boards for Portland, which has won 13 of its last 14 tilts.
Roy Hibbert chipped in 16 points and 14 rebounds for the Pacers, who had their seven-game winning streak snapped. They dropped just their second game of the year.
George drove in for a dunk to give the Pacers a 68-60 lead late in the third before Aldridge had five points during a 10-2 Blazers run, which was capped on Joel Freeland's dunk for a 70-70 deadlock.
The game was tied 72-72 heading into the fourth, where the Blazers took their first lead when Lillard knocked down a step-back triple for a 75-72 cushion with 11:09 left.
Lillard's three jumpstarted an 11-4 flurry to start the fourth and three straight Mo Williams baskets concluded the burst and gave Portland an 83-76 margin with 7:26 to play.
The Pacers led 23-20 after a quarter of play and 46-45 at the break.
Lillard was a perfect 10-of-10 from the foul line ... Wesley Matthews netted 15 points for the Blazers ... George's previous career high was 37 ... Portland was 29-of-33 (87.9 percent) from the foul line.
12/03 01:26:10 ET
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