It’s Dame Time alright!
Damian Lillard buried a huge buzzer-beater three-pointer to lead the Milwaukee Bucks past the Sacramento Kings in overtime 143-142 on Monday (all times AEDT).
It came after the Kings led 141-137 with 18 seconds left in the extra period before Malik Monk missed a pair of free throws and Brook Lopez responded with a triple at the other end to make it a one-point game.
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At the other end of the floor, De’Aaron Fox was only able to convert one free throw to put the Kings up 142-140 with five seconds on the game clock.
It led to Lillard getting up one final shot, running the floor and nailing an improbable off-balance three to win the game for the Bucks as teammates and fans alike went nuts, followed by the seven-time All-Star’s trademark ‘Dame Time’ celebration.
Lillard’s first buzzer for Milwaukee, the superstar guard finished with 29 points, five triples and eight assists in 41 minutes.
Giannis Antetokounmpo meanwhile racked up a triple-double with 27 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists and Malik Beasley (23 points, five threes) and Bobby Portis (22 points, 10 rebounds) also chipped in big performances.
It marked a third-straight win for the Bucks, who were on the second end of a back to back, to improve to 28-12.
Fox (32 points,) Domantas Sabonis (21 points, 13 rebounds, 15 assists), Kevin Huerter (26 points, 10 rebounds) and Monk (28 points, seven boards, seven assists) all had massive performances for the now 23-16 Kings, while Keegan Murray exited the game early with a hip issue.
It came in a game Kings coach Mike Brown was ejected in the fourth quarter, having to be held back by his players while he argued with the referee.
Brown post-match continued to argue his case to reporters, taking a dig at the referees including showing vision on a laptop of a foul call that riled him up in a bizarre moment.
In Minnesota, the Timberwolves hung on late to defeat the Clippers 109-105 and end LA’s three-game winning streak.
Anthony Edwards exploded with 33 points and Rudy Gobert added 15 points, 18 rebounds and four blocks as the Wolves moved back out to outright first in the West at 28-11.
Earlier in the game, the Clippers bench including Russell Westbrook mocked Gobert by bursting into laughter after he air balled a free throw in the third quarter.
It was a move the ultimately backfired though, as Gobert made four clutch free throws, going 4-of-4 inside the final minute of the game to help ice the win for his team.
Earlier, Nikola Jokic was just one of three Denver players to score 25 points and the defending champion Nuggets kept Indiana’s high-octane offence in check in a 117-109 NBA victory over the Pacers.
Jokic just missed his 13th triple-double of the season, adding 12 rebounds and nine assists.
Michael Porter Jr. and Jamal Murray scored 25 points apiece and Aaron Gordon added 20 points and 10 rebounds for the Nuggets, who shot a season-high 64.8% from the field.
Jokic continued his ruthlessly efficient scoring, connecting on 12 of 13 shots from the floor.
All five Nuggets starters were in double figures by the end of the third quarter and Denver held the NBA’s top-scoring offence to its fifth-fewest points this season.
Nuggets coach Michael Malone was disappointed by his team’s season-worst 21 turnovers, but full of praise for Porter, who drilled seven three-pointers in what Malone called “a complete basketball game.” “It was easy looks,” Porter said. “My teammates were finding me so I didn’t have to work too hard for my shots.” Porter said the Nuggets were focused on cooling off the Pacers’ red-hot offence. “We knew they wanted to push the pace,” he said, joking that the Nuggets had a little extra motivation to prevent former teammate Bruce Brown from getting a win in his return to Denver.
Brown, who played a key role off the bench in the Nuggets’ title run last season, signed with the Pacers as a free agent.
He was awarded his championship ring in a ceremony before the game. “He won a championship with us so he’s our brother for life,” Porter said. “So it was good to see him.” Brown led Indiana with 18 points, 10 rebounds and six assists but the Pacers, who had won nine of their previous 10 games, couldn’t maintain a four-point third quarter lead.
PACERS 109 NUGGETS 117
HORNETS 87 HEAT 104
CLIPPERS 105 TIMBERWOLVES 109
KINGS 142 BUCKS 143 (OT)
SUNS 127 TRAIL BLAZERS 116