Trail Blazers’ Lillard wins 3-point contest after Pacers’ Haliburton ties record

Damian Lillard of the Portland Trail Blazers finally got his hands on the elusive 3-Point Contest trophy in his third appearance in the event, taking down Indiana Pacers duo Tyrese Haliburton and Buddy Hield in the final round on Saturday in Salt Lake City.

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This year’s field featured five of this year’s All-Stars: Jayson Tatum, Tyrese Haliburton, Lauri Markkanen, Damian Lillard and Julius Randle. Also competing were Buddy Hield, Tyler Herro and Kevin Huerter.

Lillard, one of the best three-point shooters of all time, had no trouble advancing to the second round, putting up 26 points in an effortless and stylish manner, rocking a custom Dame D.O.L.L.A. jersey.

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Haliburton showed out in the first round, scoring 31 points, good enough to tie the 3-point contest record and secure a solid $300,000 donation to the NBA Cares Foundation for bypassing the 30-point mark.

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Pacers teammate and 2020 3-point champion Buddy Hield followed it up with a solid 23-point showing, good enough to carry him to the final round.

In the second round, the Indiana players couldn’t do anything to stop Lillard. Haliburton took too long to find his stroke and finished the round with only 17 points. Hield put up a more than solid 25-point performance but was undone by Lillard’s 26.

Other competitors

Sacramento Kings sharpshooter Huerter, in his first appearance in the tournament, had a rough outing, scoring only eight points despite coming into the event with a solid 39.2 per-cent shooting percentage from range on the year.

The Utah Jazz’s Markkanen had a strong start, scoring on nine of his first 10 shots, but finished with only 20 points after getting colder as his run went on.

The New York Knicks’ Randle (and his 33.8 per cent shooting clip from long range this season) was a surprising injury replacement for Trail Blazers guard Anfernee Simons.

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