Blazers star Damian Lillard wants to be great at helping others
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Blazers star Damian Lillard wants to be great at helping others

The Portland Trail Blazers have fallen short of reaching championship potential in recent years and many have looked to snatch away franchise star Damian Lillard, but the First Team All-NBA point man isn’t looking for better opportunities.

Lillard has been outspoken about his desire to remain with the team and the bond with the city of Portland, but ultimately, championship or not, he’ll live with being a great person over a great basketball player.

“If I could be the greatest at that,” he told Jason Quick of The Athletic, “then I could live with whatever the result of my career is.”

Dame is among the NBA’s elite and is likely in line to become a Hall of Fame player even without a championship ring in his finger, but the Oakland native has been intrinsically connected to the city of Portland and determined to do all that he can to support the community, acts that haven’t gone unnoticed by the locals.

“He has a heart that exceeds basketball,” said Lori Spencer, a 69-year-old Blazers employee who has worked at the ticket office for 40 years.

Damian Lillard had shown up to her work anniversary as a surprise guest. Without invitation and without reason to do so, besides just wanting to.

Saying he made an appearance would be a disservice to Lillard, who stayed for longer than an hour, mingling with the employees during a Happy Hour celebration after hugging Spencer, presenting her with flowers and deeply thanked her for her work.

It’s unclear if this Blazers teams will ever make the changes to put the roster in championship contention, but even if Damian Lillard finishes his career without a ring, he will be forever embedded into Rip City as a true man of the people.