Damian Lillard went off for a career-high 71 points in the Portland Trail Blazers’ 131-114 win on Sunday over the Houston Rockets but before Lillard could celebrate his achievement, he was subjected to something a little less enjoyable than a bottle of champagne or a celebratory cigar. That’s because following Lillard’s 71-point game, the NBA administered a blood test to the Portland point guard, the first post-game blood test of his career. Understandably, Lillard was less than thrilled.
“I mean, honestly, I was like, ‘are y’all serious?'” Lillard said to reporters in the post-game conference. “I did the urine test yesterday. Then they backed it up with the blood draw tonight after the game.”
Lillard explained that the fact it was his first post-game blood test directly following his 71-point game wasn’t his only umbrage with the action — he actually has an aversion to needles in general, a fact which the league is apparently already aware of.
“It was actually my first time of my career being tested after a game,” Lillard explained. “And aside from that, they know that I’m scared of needles. I know that I’ve got a lot of tattoos. But when you’re doing a blood draw, it’s different than tattoos.”
On the night, Lillard had 71 points on 22-38 shooting, 13-22 shooting from three-point land, 14-14 from the free throw line, 6 rebounds anbd 6 assists. Following his 71-point-game, and before he was blood-tested, Lillard displayed his usual sense of modesty when asked about how he perceived his impressive performance.
“I think any hooper enjoys those moments when you’re hot, you’re in attack mode, you’re feeling good,” Lillard said. “But it’s the stuff afterward that I struggle with, like when I walked off the court, was I supposed to be overly excited, or what?”
Despite his modesty, Lillard’s 71-point game certainly didn’t go unnoticed, particularly by Blazers head coach Chauncey Billups.
“It really, really was a masterful performance,” Billups said. “It was a piece of art. That was incredible.”
What do you think of the comments made by Damian Lillard on being blood-tested by the NBA after his 71-point-game? Did he have a right to be upset? Let us know in the comments.