The Portland Trail Blazers star Damian Lillard has spent his 11th season with the franchise, but despite all his effort, they haven’t earned any noteworthy team achievements so far.
Damian started his professional career at Portland after being the sixth overall pick in the 2012 NBA draft. From the very beginning of the season, he showed his proficiency in marksmanship and earned the Rookie of the Year award. But after all, he became a star with the age and experience he picked up over the years.
Recently, in an interview, the Blazers point guard expressed his desire and vision for the future of his beloved franchise.
- Fans speculate on Damian Lillard’s Blazers future following hinting at Lakers move in latest freestyle
What did Damian Lillard say?
The 32-year-old has seen ups and downs throughout his career, but for the last two seasons, it became tougher for him as the Blazers failed to make the postseason. Before Chauncey Billups took over as head coach, they had qualified for the playoffs directly seven times out of eight.
With the back-to-back failures, it seems the seven-time all-star started losing patience and demanding some support. In a press conference, he expressed his choice of experienced players over younger, saying, “I don’t have much of an appetite for bringing in guys two and three years away from really going after it.”
“I think we get Shaedon at 19, and he’s just different. Just being around him, his disposition, how he listens, his frame, his natural talent, and his ability,” the PG continued. “I think that’s enough for 19-year-olds. You probably won’t find one that will come along the way he has.”
“I’m just not interested in that. And this is not a secret. I want a chance to go for it. And if the route is to do that, then that’s not my route,” Lillard concluded by giving an ultimatum. “I think we’re all in line with doing what we got to do to put a team together that we can actually go out there and get something done.”
It’s nothing new for the 6.2-footer’s preference for veteran athletes, and justifiably, he has every right to make a demand. With loyalty, dedication, and passion, he served the franchise, rejecting several lucrative offers. Now it’s the organization’s time to show some appreciation and support for its prime asset.
- “They think they’re LeBron”: Blazers’ Damian Lillard slams young players as he bemoans their lack of team-first mentality
The Trail Blazers star has established a cornerstone for higher moral values and sportsmanship over the years. Even a part of the NBA community wishes him to leave for a new challenge, as a player of his caliber should get some support from teammates to rise above the occasion.
In 2022, the Blazers signed an extension deal with Damian Lillard for the 2024–25 season, and there is a chance that he will submit a trade request in the upcoming off-season.