Damian Lillard: “I woke up to those reports, a lot of people have been reaching out to me. It’s not true. I’ll start off the rip and say it’s not true. I said the last time that I spoke to you guys that a lot of things are being said and it hasn’t come from me. Number one, it’s not true, and secondly, I’ll also say that I haven’t made any firm decision on what my future will be. There really is no need for anybody else to speak for me, or report this or report that. If there’s something to be said I’ll speak directly with my team and Neil [Blazers GM] so that’s that.”
During a Friday news conference with Team USA Basketball, Blazers star Damian Lillard shot down the breaking news reports that he had requested a trade from the franchise he has spent the last nine seasons with.
Despite his name reportedly being tied to the Knicks, Lakers, Warriors, and Heat, Lillard emphatically stated of the rumors ‘It’s not true’.
However, Lillard was more vague when it came to his definitive future with the team saying ‘Right now I’m not sure what I’m going to do. What I can say are my intentions and my heart has always been set on being in a Trailblazers uniform for my entire career, but over time you want to win it all, and I want to win it all in a Trailblazers uniform, but we have to all be making strides towards that.'
This came after Lillard addressed the team’s chances of winning a championship and he didn't exactly give them a ringing endorsement. Moments after saying he wanted to win a championship, he said of the current Blazers roster 'I don't see how you say this is a championship team':
“I don’t disagree that Chauncey can change our team and make us a better team and get us going in that direction, but if you look at our team as it is going into next season, I don’t see how you can say ‘this is a championship team, you just need a new coach', when you lost to a team in the first round who was hurt.”
Lillard turned 31 years old yesterday and will be embarking on the beginning of his 4-year, $176 million deal this upcoming season.