Some of Damian Lillard's recent tweets at the beginning of National Basketball Association free agency led people to speculate he wasn't thrilled with the state of the Portland Trail Blazers, but the All-Star guard shot down that thinking in a recent interview with reporters.
Lillard spoke with Trail Blazers reporters from the Summer League on Sunday and addressed his status with the team.
But speaking to NBA.com's Forward Center, Lillard clarified the confusion: "I'm not unhappy". That's Damian Lillard's preference.
"I'm straight up. I'm straight up with Coach". I think it's always going to be tough and now you've got LeBron coming over here, you've got Denver getting a little bit better, Utah getting a little bit better and it's just going to get tougher and tougher. "It is what's it's always been, but just a little tougher".
Lillard is the face of the franchise and he continues to enjoy playing for the team that drafted him in 2012.
Shortly after LeBron James signed with the Lakers as a free agent, a report surfaced suggesting Lillard could be traded to the Lakers but Blazers' GM Neil Olshey promptly responded to the report, "As much as I love LeBron, he doesn't get to pick his teammates". Bazz played big minutes for us, Pat played big minutes for us - so we lose three rotation players that gave us a lot and contributed to our season a year ago.
On Portland's 2018 free agency.
But as far as truly contending goes, it's going to be tough for Lillard and company to make any noise out West for a while. After all of those insane trade rumors were going around (thanks to Stephen A.), we all needed some kind of affirmation from Lillard. "He was one of my best friends in the league; one of my favorite teammates I've played with". "Obviously it's not like we're a destination. It's tough to attract players to want to come here". They both showing signs right now. Pat played big minutes for us. Everything that they say and tweet can be so deceiving, and most of the time, we end up falling for it. He may have teased some fans with his tweet, but he is happy in Portland and is not seeking a trade. "And I feel like we are trying to do that".
Damian Lillard: "I'm straight up". The Blazers did finish third this past season, but it was a distant third behind the Golden State Warriors and Houston Rockets.
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