Portland Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard scored 60 points for the fourth time in his NBA career during a win over the Utah Jazz.

The six-time All-Star’s efficient shooting led the Trail Blazers to a 134-124 victory on Wednesday night. Lillard made only 29 shots and 10 free throw attempts en route to his epic 60-point performance. Only two other players in NBA history have been able to score 60 on fewer than 29 shot attempts.

Karl Malone only needed 26 shot attempts in 1990, while James Harden used 24 in 2019.

It took Rick Barry more than 29 field goal attempts to score 60 points in 1974, but he used fewer than 10 free throw attempts to reach the impressive scoring mark.

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Damian Lillard #0 of the Portland Trail Blazers gestures after making a 3-point basket during the second half against the Utah Jazz at the Moda Center on January 25, 2023 in Portland, Oregon.

Damian Lillard #0 of the Portland Trail Blazers gestures after making a 3-point basket during the second half against the Utah Jazz at the Moda Center on January 25, 2023 in Portland, Oregon.
(Photo by Soobum Im/Getty Images)

«That was awesome, man,» Trail Blazers coach Chauncey Billups said. «You don’t get to see that very often, to be that efficient. For a guy to put up 60 points and only 10 free throws and make nine of them, you’re thinking this guy has an absurd amount of 3-pointers.» It was just amazing how efficient he was.

Lillard hit nine 3-pointers Wednesday night, tying him for second in a 60-point game. Overall, he shot 72 percent overall from the field.

Lillard said he didn’t realize he had accomplished something until someone told him after the game.

«It’s the most efficient 60 point game ever, really?» Lillard said. «That’s crazy. I didn’t know that. I’m just sitting here thinking I had a shot at the end of the shot clock from midcourt towards the end that I shot. I probably would have been a little better. I missed a free throw.» .

The night started somewhat routinely with Lillard ending the first quarter with nine points. But in the second quarter, the guard accumulated 17 points.

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Damian Lillard #0 of the Portland Trail Blazers drives to the basket against Jordan Clarkson #00 of the Utah Jazz during the second half at the Moda Center on January 25, 2023 in Portland, Oregon.

Damian Lillard #0 of the Portland Trail Blazers drives to the basket against Jordan Clarkson #00 of the Utah Jazz during the second half at the Moda Center on January 25, 2023 in Portland, Oregon.
(Soobum Im/Getty Images)

He heated up in the third quarter and closed out the period scoring Portland’s last 20 points. He was 7-9 from the field with three 3-pointers in the third.

Surprisingly, Billups had to be talked into keeping Lillard in the game during that stretch.

Billups hinted that he considered removing Lillard from the game due to fatigue, but ultimately decided to let him play after assuring the coach that he could continue.

«I thought he was tired at the end of the third and he was really hot,» Billups said. “I got to timeout and I said, ‘How do you feel? I really wanted to get you out here for the last two minutes.’ GP [Gary Payton II] and everyone was like, ‘No, let it go!’ I said man this could be a good game in the end. I don’t want to make him tired because he’s 45, 50. He said, ‘I’m fine, I’m fine.’ I have to trust the guys in those moments.»

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Damian Lillard #0 of the Portland Trail Blazers dribbles the ball while being defended by Jordan Clarkson #00 (L) of the Utah Jazz during the second half at the Moda Center on January 25, 2023 in Portland, Oregon.

Damian Lillard #0 of the Portland Trail Blazers dribbles the ball while being defended by Jordan Clarkson #00 (L) of the Utah Jazz during the second half at the Moda Center on January 25, 2023 in Portland, Oregon.
(Photo by Soobum Im/Getty Images)

Lillard tied for the second most points in the league this season. Dallas Mavericks star Luka Doncic also scored 60 in an overtime win against the New York Knicks on December 27. Doncic’s performance delivered the first triple-double of 60 points and 20 rebounds in NBA history.

Both performances are just behind Cleveland Cavaliers guard Donovan Mitchell’s 71-point performance on Jan. 3.

Lillard became the fifth player in league history to score 60 points at least four times. Wilt Chamberlain, Kobe Bryant, Michael Jordan and James Harden are the other four players who make up the elite group of players who have dropped 60 points four or more times.

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Lillard said he was able to get into a rhythm and keep things simple Wednesday night.

«I don’t want to say it was easy because they had some big bodies and some long defenders, but I think I usually get into a rhythm where I just go without making those simple plays, that teams start coming.» after me before,» he noted.