A lot has been made recently about a potential breakup between Damian Lillard and his longtime Portland Trail Blazers organization.
The six-time All-NBA point guard had grown frustrated with how the organization was building a team around him, and the fallout after the hiring of head coach Chauncey Billups didn’t sit well either, Yahoo Sports Chris Haynes reported earlier this month. Haynes even went as far as to say those two factors could push Lillard “out the door.”
It then got to a point where there were potential trades centering on Lillard to the Boston Celtics while oddsmakers even had the New York Knicks and Miami Heat among teams who Lillard could play for next. Things, as they so often do in the NBA world, escalated rather quickly.
Well, Lillard finally spoke publicly about those rumors Thursday. And his response to the speculation certainly called them into question a bit.
“There’s a lot of things being said and sometimes words being put in my mouth and I haven’t said anything,” Lillard told reporters after a Team USA practice, per ESPN. “If there is something to be said or if I think something or have something to say that I’m going to say it and I’m going to stand on it.”
The nine-year veteran added how he would take up with the Blazers brass. Lillard has been adamant about his hopes to bring Portland a championship in the past.
“Anything that I have to say, I’m going to say directly to (general manager) Neil (Olshey) and I’m going to address it directly with my team,” Lillard said. “There’s really nothing else I have to say about it.”
Perhaps fans of other NBA franchises — like the Celtics — should put a halt to their Lillard trade hopes. Because without the perennial All-Star wanting out, the organization definitely won’t be making a move to trade him elsewhere.