Damian Lillard and the Portland Trail Blazers are at a crossroads following a fourth first-round exit in the NBA Playoffs in five years and the firing of longtime head coach Terry Stotts.
While some whispers have come up regarding the loyal Lillard potentially wanting out of the Pacific Northwest, we have not heard any concrete information relating to this. Until now. This information comes to us via Yahoo! Sports NBA insider Chris Haynes and is a huge development.
“The enormous backlash from the Portland Trail Blazers’ process to hire a new coach and his concerns on whether a championship contender can be built have become factors that may push the franchise player — Damian Lillard — out the door, league sources told Yahoo Sports,” Haynes reported.
The Blazers are set to introduce Los Angeles Clippers assistant Chauncey Billups as their next head coach in a press conference on Tuesday. According to the report from Haynes, Damian Lillard had no previous knowledge of sexual assault allegations that were levied against Billups back in 1997.
As for Dame, he’s been pretty darn active on social media pushing back against the narrative that he had a vital role in the Blazers’ search for a new head coach.
A lot of this has surrounded San Antonio Spurs assistant Becky Hammon being considered a finalist for Portland’s job and its decision to go in a different direction with an individual who has in the past been accused of sexual assault.
One of the best guards in the game, Damian Lillard averaged 28.8 points and 7.5 assists while shooting 39% from three-point range for the Blazers during the 2020-21 regular season. Despite the 30-year-old six-time All-Star averaging 34.3 points in the playoffs, Portland fell in the first round to the Denver Nuggets.