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PORTLAND, Ore. -- With Portland trailing Utah to start the fourth quarter, Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard did what an All-Star is supposed to do. Lillard scored 14 points in the final period and finished with 28 for the short-handed Trail Blazers in a much-needed 102-94 victory over Utah on Friday night. "I definitely feel like theres times I have to assert myself," he said. Lillard grabbed attention last weekend by taking part in a record five All-Star events. Last-seasons Rookie of the Year was a first-time All-Star, earning a spot on the West team by vote of the conferences coaches. The Blazers need Lillard to take over games like he did against the Jazz in the absence of fellow All-Star LaMarcus Aldridge, who sat out with a left groin injury. Robin Lopez had 12 points and a career-high 18 rebounds for the Blazers, who avoided a season-high fourth straight loss as they struggle to keep pace in the Western Conference. "When youre going through a tough stretch, its hard to get back on track sometimes," Lillard said. "This win will get us back on track." Enes Kanter matched his career-high with 25 points and added 10 rebounds for the Jazz, who lost their second straight after a three-game winning streak. Utah opened the final quarter with a 73-64 lead, but Portland answered with a 7-0 run to close within 73-71 and went ahead on Lillards 3-pointer with 9:18 left. Energized by regaining the lead, Lillards alley-oop dunk off a dish from Nicolas Batum made it 80-75 with 6:07 left. "Hes always in attack mode," Utahs Trey Burke said of Lillard. Utah kept it close down the stretch, with Richard Jeffersons 3-pointer narrowing the gap to 85-83. Batum answered with a 3-pointer for the Blazers. Kanters jumper got Utah within 94-91 with 1:21 to go, but Mo Williams jumper extended it again for the Blazers, who cruised the rest of the way. Portland outscored the Jazz 38-21 in the final period. "I thought in the fourth quarter we had a nice cushion," Jazz coach Tyrone Corbin said. "They just came out right from the beginning of the fourth and got a turnover and made a 3-point shot. We made another mistake and they scored on it, and they ran from there." Portland was playing its second game without Aldridge, who leads the team with 23.9 points and 11.4 rebounds per game. He is expected to sit out Sunday nights game against Minnesota before he is reevaluated. Dorell Wright started in Aldridges place. The Blazers also were without forward Joel Freeland, who has a right knee sprain, and Meyers Leonard, who sprained his left ankle in practice on Monday. Portlands front court got even thinner when Batum, who has been fighting the flu, retreated to the locker room late in the first half. Will Barton started the second half, but Batum returned late in the third quarter. The Jazz were without forward Derrick Favours, who missed his second straight game because of hip issues. Favours is averaging 12.9 points and nine rebounds a game. Kanter started in his place and led both teams with 15 points at the half. The Blazers led by as many as six points in the first quarter, but the Jazz closed in and went ahead 19-18 on Diante Garretts driving layup. Portland reclaimed a 28-25 lead midway through the second quarter on Bartons fast-break 360-degree dunk. Lillards 3-pointer extended the lead to 43-37. Both teams wrestled for the lead through the third quarter, until the Jazz appeared to make a move, going up 62-57 on Trey Burkes deep 3-pointer. It was Utahs biggest lead of the game to that point. Utah extended the lead to 68-60 on Alec Burks layup. NOTES: Blazers coach Terry Stotts wore a plaid sportcoat and an open-collared shirt in honour of Dr. Jack Ramsays 89th birthday. Ramsay coached the Trail Blazers to the 1977 NBA title, hence the throwback outfit. "Im not much of a fashionista, but I think he was able to pull it off," Lopez said. ... The Blazers have won the first three meetings against the Jazz for the first time since 1997-98. ... Portland was 17-of-17 from the free-throw line. Wholesale NCAA Jerseys . -- Jimmie Johnson has a sixth NASCAR championship in hand and two legends within reach. Cheap College Baseball Jerseys . 9 Baylor Bears just needed some time to get on track in their first game after the Christmas break. http://www.cheapcollegejerseysauthentic.com/. Future Hall of Famer Ricky Ray is in his prime and back for a third season in double blue. The 34-year old was magnificent in 2013, throwing for just under 2,900 yards despite missing eight games, tossing an impressive 21 touchdowns against just two interceptions, completing 66 per cent of his passes in the process. Cheap College Football Jerseys .ca! Hi Kerry, The recent issues in the Boston-Pittsburgh game have highlighted a number of officiating, game control, and player sportsmanship aspects. Cheap College Jerseys From China . Johansen scored twice and Derek MacKenzie, Brandon Dubinsky and Cam Atkinson also had goals to lead the Blue Jackets to a 5-2 victory over the Washington Capitals on Thursday night, ending a three-game losing skid. OKLAHOMA CITY -- San Antonio fought off Father Time, the league MVP and an injury to its best player to return to the NBA Finals. The Spurs beat the Oklahoma City Thunder 112-107 in overtime Saturday night in Game 6 of the Western Conference finals to set up a rematch with the Miami Heat. San Antonio will host Game 1 on Thursday night and will try to avenge last years heartbreaking loss. San Antonio led Miami 3-2 before losing Game 6 in overtime, then dropping Game 7. "People keep talking like we werent close to winning, but we were ready to win last year," Spurs centre Tim Duncan said. "Were happy its the Heat again. Weve got that bad taste in our mouths still." A trio of 30-somethings led the way for the Spurs. Duncan had 19 points and 15 rebounds, Boris Diaw scored 26 points and Manu Ginobili chipped in 15 points and six rebounds for the Spurs. San Antonio pulled this one out despite All-Star point guard Tony Parker missing the entire second half and overtime with left ankle soreness. Popovich said Parker had been struggling with the ankle since Game 4 of the series. The Spurs overcame it the way they have for more than a decade -- with teamwork, passing and great performances by role players. "We didnt know how much Tony was hurt in his ankle," Diaw said. "But we didnt want to go to Game 7, and we didnt know if he would be ready to play if we did or if he would be 100 per cent, so we tried to get it over with tonight." It was the third-best playoff scoring effort of Diaws 11-year career and his best since 2006. "Boris was amazing," Duncan said. "He had an unbelievable game. Hes had a great series." Russell Westbrook had 34 points, eight assists, seven rebounds and six steals, and MVP Kevin Durant added 31 points and 14 rebounds for the Thunder. But Oklahoma City committed 20 turnovers that led to 33 points for the Spurs. Westbrook and Durant each had seven turnovers. "We started settling for too many jump shots," Thunder coach Scott Brooks said. "It just seemed like we couldnt get enough good looks at the basket. Defensively, they just had us scrambling around." San Antonio also handled Serge&nbbsp;Ibakas return from injury.dddddddddddd Oklahoma Citys defensive star missed the first two games with a strained left calf, but he returned to help the Thunder win the next two games and tie the series. The series featured five blowouts wins by the home teams, but the closeout game was a gem. Oklahoma City overcame a 12-point deficit in the fourth quarter to force overtime. "I have to be honest, this victory is really sweet because we know we played one hell of a team, and we take great satisfaction in that since theyre so special," San Antonio coach Gregg Popovich said. In overtime, Duncans shot from the baseline rattled in to give the Spurs a 110-107 lead with 19 seconds to go. Durant missed a good look at a 3-pointer, and the Spurs rebounded and went to the line. Diaw missed the first and made the second free throw to make it a four-point lead for the Spurs. Westbrook missed a wild 3-pointer, and Spurs wrapped it up. San Antonio led by 12 early in the fourth quarter, but the Thunder chipped away at the free throw line after getting the Spurs into foul trouble. Back-to-back baskets by Westbrook and Durant cut San Antonios lead to 93-91 with 4:01 to play, leading to the frantic final minutes. Westbrook was fouled on a drive with 9.3 seconds to play. He made both free throws to tie the score at 101. Ginobilis fadeaway at the free-throw line against Westbrook missed, and the game went to overtime. Ginobili said the Thunder were a significant hurdle, and he expects them to be a roadblock in the future. "They are a pretty good team," he said. "They have so much talent, so much athleticism, so much future. They are a tough team." Notes: The Spurs had just two assists and missed all five of their 3-point attempts in the first quarter. ... Spurs C Matt Bonner started for the second straight game. He made just 1 of 5 3-pointers in the first half as the Thunder backed off of him. ... Westbrook had four steals in the first half. ... Thunder coach Scott Brooks was issued a technical foul in the third quarter. ... Westbrook made his first 10 free throws and 17 of 18 overall. ... Thunder G Derek Fisher, 39, played every minute of the fourth quarter and overtime. ' ' '

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