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Cavaliers trail most of way, rally to dump Trail Blazers

Jan 12, 2023; Portland, Oregon, USA; Portland Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard (0) dribbles the ball against the Cleveland Cavaliers in the first half at Moda Center. Mandatory Credit: Jaime Valdez-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Jaime Valdez-USA TODAY Sports

Donovan Mitchell scored 26 points and Jarrett Allen added 24 points, 10 rebounds and six assists as the Cleveland Cavaliers rallied to produce a 119-113 victory over the host Portland Trail Blazers on Thursday night.

Darius Garland recorded 20 points and 10 assists for the Cavaliers, who never led until 4:40 remained in the contest. Evan Mobley added 17 points and eight rebounds and Isaac Okoro had 11 points as Cleveland improved to 2-2 on a five-game road swing.

Damian Lillard scored 50 points on 16-of-28 shooting but couldn’t prevent Portland from dropping its fifth straight game and 10th of its past 13. It marked the 13th time Lillard has tallied at least 50 points in regular-season play.

Jerami Grant scored 22 points, Anfernee Simons added 15 and Jusuf Nurkic registered 12 points and 12 rebounds for the Trail Blazers.

Cleveland outscored Portland 32-22 in the final quarter.

A basket by Mitchell gave the Cavaliers a 111-109 edge with 2:04 remaining. Mobley followed with a basket and Mitchell added two driving hoops to make it an eight-point margin with one minute left, and Cleveland closed it out.

Ricky Rubio of the Cavaliers had nine points in 10 1/2 minutes in his first game in 12 1/2 months due to a torn ACL in his left knee.

Portland shot 51.3 percent from the field, including 11 of 33 from 3-point range.

The Cavaliers made 49.4 percent of their shots and were 7 of 22 from behind the arc.

Cleveland finally caught Portland at 97 on Okoro’s 3-pointer with 8:01 remaining, but Lillard scored the next five points for the Trail Blazers.

The Cavaliers answered with a 10-2 run. Mitchell swished a 22-footer to give Cleveland its first lead of the game at 105-104 with 4:40 remaining, and Garland followed with a driving hoop to give the Cavaliers a three-point edge with four minutes to go.

The Trail Blazers later tied the score at 109 on a 3-pointer by Simons with 2:26 remaining.

Lillard scored 25 first-half points to help the Trail Blazers hold a 58-51 lead at the break.

Portland maintained the lead throughout the third quarter. But Mitchell hit consecutive 3-pointers late in the period to bring the Cavaliers within 87-85 before the Trail Blazers took a 91-87 lead into the final stanza.

–Field Level Media