“They think they’re LeBron”: Blazers’ Damian Lillard slams young players as he bemoans their lack of team-first mentality

The Portland Trail Blazers star point guard, Damian Lillard, has been playing for the team for 11 years now and has achieved numerous accolades in the meantime.

The Trail Blazers selected him sixth overall in the 2012 NBA draft, and he has been dunking baskets since his rookie year. However, he never got ahead of himself with a handful of fame and gained a name at such a young age.

Damian Lillard

As time changes, the culture also changes among youngsters, who become popular too soon. Damián didn’t want to hinder the process, but he uncovered a real crisis among them.

What does Damian Lillard say about the youngsters?

After getting a name for their talents, young athletes tend to overestimate their abilities; in doing so, some go down the wrong path. There’s no denying their talent, but they have to nurture that talent for further nourishment.

The 32-year-old didn’t hesitate to bash these kinds of overachievers in a recent interview with J.J. Redick. “They play for themselves. They play for stats. They think they’re LeBron James when they make an All-Star Game or get a max contract. It’s just different,” he stated.

The change in the culture of the NBA is propelled by the popularity of the sport among young generations, and Lillard believes it suddenly took a dive. There was a time when players like him wanted to play for the badge and honor rather than just money.

The PG, as a youngster himself, was a talented and consistent performer, even being named to the All-Star team seven times so far. He finally won the three-pointers contest in this year’s edition of the event, but there’s only humbleness to be found in his character.

Lillard was named NBA rising star twice, rookie of the year, and participated in all five events at All-Star Weekend in 2014, the first player ever to do that.

In support of his perspective, we can also notice that the younger generation of NBA players has burned out fast after reaching their peak in recent years.

What’s your take on the changes in the NBA? Do you agree with Damián Lillard? Leave your thoughts with us in the comment section.

Shahbaj Arefin

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Shahbaj Arefin is a professional Sports Content Writer at SportsZion. He mostly covers NBA, alongside NFL and MLB. His favorite basketball player is Michael Jordan. Arefin is also a football enthusiast. He is a die-hard supporter of Argentina and Chelsea FC, frequently posting on Facebook during the their matches.


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