Damian Lillard on 35-Point Half in Revenge Win Over Pacers

Damian Lillard

Damian Lillard did not take kindly to Tyrese Haliburton mocking him with a Dame Time celebration when the Bucks and Pacers met during the NBA In-Season Tournament.

But Lillard got his revenge when he scored 35 points in the first half alone tonight as Milwaukee beat Indiana 109-94 to take a 1-0 first-round series lead.

Lillard said postgame he knew he’d have to step up with Giannis Antetokounmpo out with an injury.

“I don’t think that it’s all on me but I know that I’ve got to be a little bit more aggressive and I’ve got to step forward a little bit more assertively,” he said.

“In the playoffs … it’s about setting a tone. We’re going to see this team a lot of times, and you want to establish yourself, especially on your home floor. That was just my mentality, to come out and try to set the tone.”

READ MORE: Damian Lillard Responds to Rumors of Being Unhappy in Milwaukee

Lillard added that he was just happy to be back in the postseason.

“Last 2 years not being in the playoffs… It sucked,” he said. “I went to Coachella. I ain’t ever been able to go to Coachella.”

It was a strange night for Lillard, who followed his 35-point first half with a zero-point second half. He only attempted five shots after half-time as the Pacers focused their energy on slowing him down. But the Bucks star had essentially already won the game for Milwaukee with his explosive play.

Game 2 is scheduled for Tuesday.