With time running down in a tie game, the Portland Trail Blazers star pulled up from 37 feet and nailed the buzzer-beating dagger over George's outstretched arms. Lillard's heroics put the Blazers through to the second round for the first time since 2016, and George's opinion seemed irrelevant to the four-time All-Star.
"I didn't want to put it into the referee hands," Lillard told reporters, including ESPN's Royce Young. "Where if there was contact or maybe they get away with contact or I end up having to take a tougher shot because there was contact and they don't want to decide the game. So I was standing there looking at the rim and I was like, 'This is a comfortable range.'"
Lillard scored a playoff-career-high 50 points on 17-of-33 shooting from the field while making a franchise-record 10 shots from behind the arc.
Meanwhile, George produced his best performance of the series with 36 points on 14-of-20 shooting while adding nine boards and three assists. But his efforts went to waste as the Thunder were eliminated in the first round for the third consecutive season.