On Aug. 15, 2020, the Portland Trail Blazers and Memphis Grizzlies faced off in the NBA's first-ever Play-In Game.
Damian Lillard led the Trail Blazers to a thrilling 126-122 victory with 31 points and a game-high 10 assists. CJ McCollum added 29 points, 14 of which came in the fourth quarter, while Jusuf Nurkic recorded a 22-point, 21-rebound double-double and Carmelo Anthony chipped in with 21 points.
Ja Morant, the 2019-20 Rookie of the Year, scored 35 points and dished out eight assists in a losing effort.
All-Access: @trailblazers advance in the Western Conference Play-In!- NBA (@NBA) August 18, 2020
As the 8th seed, Portland will face the Lakers to open up their #NBAPlayoffs run tonight at 9:00 PM ET on TNT. #WholeNewGame pic.twitter.com/KUh11porue
With the win, the Trail Blazers earned the No. 8 seed in the Western Conference and a date with the Los Angeles Lakers in the first round of the 2020 NBA Playoffs.
The Trail Blazers defeated the Lakers in Game 1, but Los Angeles proceeded to win four straight to knock Portland out of the playoffs.
Lillard helped the Trail Blazers earn a spot in the Play-In Game with a herculean effort in the eight seeding games each team played prior to the playoffs. Lillard carried Portland to a 6-2 record with an average of 37.6 points and 9.6 assists, earning him Bubble MVP.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the seeding games, Play-In Game and 2020 NBA Playoffs took place at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex near Orlando, Florida.
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