McCollum scores 32, leads Blazers over Bulls in OT
CHICAGO — C.J. McCollum scored 25 of his 32 points after halftime, including the tiebreaking basket with 56.5 seconds remaining in overtime, and the Portland Trail Blazers beat the Chicago Bulls 124-120 on Monday night.
Al-Farouq Aminu added a season-high 24 points and Evan Turner also had his season best with 22 for Portland, which was without leading scorer Damian Lillard for a fifth straight game.
Kris Dunn scored 22 points and Nikola Mirotic had 18 points off the bench for Chicago, which blew a late lead for a second straight game. The Bulls lost for only the fourth time in 14 games since Mirotic returned to the lineup.
Lauri Markkanen finished with 19 points, including a jumper from the corner that tied it at 120 with 1:14 left in overtime.
McCollum then made his short floater and added a pair of late free throws.
McCollum and Aminu, who made 5-of-6 3-pointers after halftime, carried the Blazers’ offense as they rallied from a seven-point deficit.
After scoring four straight points to tie it at 112, McCollum missed two tries to pull ahead in the final 36 seconds of regulation.
Led by Mirotic and Bobby Portis, the Bulls’ bench helped them overcome a sluggish start. Each had nine points in a second quarter in which Chicago’s reserves outscored Portland’s 18-7. Mirotic hit a deep 3-pointer with 5:21 left before the half to give the Bulls a 43-39 lead after they trailed by as many as 10 points early.
Portis finished with 14 points and seven rebounds. Neither Mirotic nor Portis played the final 7 1/ 2 minutes of regulation or overtime.
Pat Connaughton had 16 points for Portland.
Trail Blazers: Lillard missed his fifth straight game with a right hamstring strain. Expected to be a game-time decision, Lillard, who hasn’t played since Dec. 20, was ruled out early. Portland coach Terry Stotts wasn’t sure if Lillard would play on Tuesday at Cleveland.
“When he’s ready, he’ll be ready, but it’s hard to say,” Stotts said.
Bulls: Zach LaVine’s “training camp” has gone well so far, according to coach Fred Hoiberg. Coming off February surgery to repair a torn ACL in his left knee, LaVine is halfway through a stretch of six consecutive days of full-contact practices. “He’s sore, as expected,” Hoiberg said. “Overall, he’s handled it great. He’ll have another good opportunity (Tuesday). It was good to see him out there. He’s in training camp mode right now, but he’s handling the workload well and that’s the important thing.”
Trail Blazers: At the Cleveland Cavaliers on Tuesday night.
Bulls: Host the Toronto Raptors on Wednesday night.
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