Lillard, a six-time All-NBA guard, is frustrated due to fallout after Portland hired head coach Chauncey Billups, as well as the team’s inability to build around him, Yahoo! Sports’ Chris Haynes reported earlier this week.
All told, it seemingly has made a trade for the perennial All-Star much easier to imagine than it once was. Especially due to the fact Lillard always remained loyal to the Blazers organization.
Well, the latest reports have caused bookmakers to take notice, and DraftKings SportsBook even released odds on where the 30-year-old Lillard could play next season.
Check out these odds from DraftKings SportsBook, per The Action Network.
Portland Trail Blazers -3335
New York Knicks +600
Miami Heat +1200
Boston Celtics +2000
Los Angeles Clippers +2000
Philadelphia 76ers +2000
Los Angeles Lakers +2000
Here are a few takeaways:
Trail Blazers -3335
Oddsmakers clearly can’t fathom a day where Lillard will be traded, depicted by Portland remaining a massive favorite. (Well, that and the fact they clearly don’t want people betting he remains with the franchise without having significant skin in the game.) And neither can we.
Lillard to the Knicks could very well reinvent The Mecca of Basketball and make it that much more attractive for future free agents. The Knicks have been unexciting as of recent, save for their 2020-21 season in which they reached the postseason, but New York unloading young assets and picks to pair Lillard with Julius Randle would be a fun twist in the Eastern Conference. It certainly would bring excitement back to an organization that needs it.
Lillard will be heading to Las Vegas to begin training for the Olympics with USA Basketball and conveniently will be coached by Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra. No better time to recruit, right? And if you’re Lillard, what’s not to love about Miami? Lillard joining Jimmy Butler could make for another threat to the Brooklyn Nets and Milwaukee Bucks in the conference. The Heat do have some limitations when it comes to their draft capital, though.
While it’s fun to think about Lillard topping off Boston’s organization-shifting offseason, the reality is the Celtics don’t seem to have assets they’re willing to part with. Sure, they have Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown, but based on some recent comments from both president of basketball operations Brad Stevens and recently hired head coach Ime Udoka, it’s unlikely they part with either of those two budding stars. And we can’t imagine Portland would get rid of its superstar for a package including Grant Williams, Romeo Langford, Aaron Nesmith, even Robert Williams and trade chips.