“Clyde wanted to see me win in Portland…I mean, I’m right there” – 6X NBA all-star does not want to pass on a unique opportunity in Portland, mentions Clyde Drexler as a probable reason for loyalty to Portland
Out of all the players in the NBA, Damian Lillard seems to be one of the most loyal. His refusal to demand a trade and win with a different team is impressive and Dame cites a legend as the reason for his loyalty.
The age of superteams is upon us. Stars are constantly moving from team to team to win titles. Players seem to enjoy this kind of trend, but for fans, it’s not completely entertaining. For the media, it’s a trend that needs to be stopped in order for the league to be competitive again. But it doesn’t seem like it will happen anytime soon.
For a player like Damian Lillard, he has the ability to demand a trade and recruit stars to join him. However, that hasn’t been the case for the 6-time All-Star. Since 2013, Lillard has remained loyal to the team that drafted him. For over a decade, Dame Dolla has carried the Portland Trailblazers to the NBA playoffs for eight straight seasons.
The Blazers weren’t able to make the playoffs last season, but that hasn’t been a hindrance for Lillard to stay loyal to the team. In an article written by Chris Haynes, Lillard shared his motivation to stay in Portland. He said:
“Clyde wanted to see me win in Portland,” Lillard said. “But he told me to do what I had to do to be happy.”
“I was thinking I would hate to come this close and miss out on that opportunity to pass Drexler if I was to leave. I mean, I’m right there. I definitely thought about it, but I never really believed I would be leaving Portland. It ended up all working out.”
In the article, NBA legend Clyde Drexler said:
“You and I know records are made to be broken, but I can’t think of a better player or person to break the record than Dame.”
Clyde “The Glide” Drexler is the Blazers’ all-time leading scorer with 18,040 points, while Lillard is right behind him with 17,510.
Damian Lillard is bound to have an incredible NBA season
It’s a new chapter for Damian Lillard as he enters his 11th NBA season. After missing out on most of the 2021-22 season, Lillard is expected to make an incredible comeback season. The Blazers have built a new squad to help the 6-time All-NBA reclaim their status as a playoff team.
During the previous campaign, Lillard only played for 29 games before suffering a season-ending abdominal injury. The former Rookie of the Year also struggled during those games to play efficiently due to a change in basketball equipment.
Knowing his competitiveness, Lillard will bounce back with a better squad. Throughout last season and over the summer, the Blazers made important moves to help Lillard. The team made a big trade and got the frontcourt help for Lillard. They were able to acquire Jerami Grant. Portland was also able to draft Shaedon Sharpe this year.
Things are going well for the Blazers this offseason, hopefully they’ll get to play before the playoffs.