Damian Lillard had a mid-career crisis on Saturday night. Stuck in a rebuild with the Trail Blazers, perhaps he ought to talk to the front office.
Lillard has remained committed to Portland despite their rebuild. The front office has made it clear with their superstar that they intend to rebuild, but Dame appears fine with that, even if it takes with it the remaining years of his prime.
The 31-year-old will represent Portland at the NBA Draft Lottery in hopes of securing a high pick to speak up said rebuild, but it’s safe to say the Blazers are a few pieces away.
Despite frequent recruiting from the likes of LeBron James and other NBA stars to leave the small-market city, Lillard’s loyalty is his best attribute, and also one that may keep him from a championship.
On Saturday, Lillard sent out several tweets (perhaps sarcastically) questioning his own decision-making and career prospects.
Is it time for Damian Lillard to leave the Blazers?
Lillard has made it clear he wants to win an NBA Title in Portland, not elsewhere.
“That’s the only thing I care about, honestly… Like I said, my best is yet to come. And the only things that I play for at this point is I want to be the MVP of the league and I want to win the championship. And once I do those things, I feel great about the investment that I made to this game over my whole life. If I accomplish those two things, I’m walking away feeling like I literally got the most out of myself as an athlete,” Lillard told Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports in an interview.
In putting on his GM hate, Lillard understands exactly what the Blazers have to offer — a fresh start.
“We got picks, we got a $22 million trade exception, we got a $6 million trade exception, we got the full mid-level, we got the biannual. We have an opportunity, and we got flexibility. There are guys we can bring in that can make us a team that can compete for a championship, but we have to execute that,” Lillard continued.
Having assets and making the right decisions are two very different things. For now, though, there is reason for optimism, despite Lillard’s tweets on Saturday.