The speculation surrounding Damian Lillard's future with the Trail Blazers has been a topic of discussion for ages now. Could this be the offseason that Portland finally moves on from their longtime star?
“This is me just making a judgment from the sidelines. It's not like Dame told me this. I think based on whatever they're going to be able to do with this coming trade, if they're not able to accomplish something heading towards the direction of winning, the organization may decide, ‘You know what, we can get a quality haul for him.' And they move him,” posited CJ McCollum.
The Blazers are armed with the third overall pick in the upcoming 2023 NBA Draft. Save for landing Victor Wembanyama with the first overall pick, it was a foregone conclusion that they'd end up shopping it for a proven star to pair with Damian Lillard. But just as McCollum said, what's out there for them on the trade market could be the deciding factor for both parties involved.
“If I had to guess, I think the market will dictate the decision. I don't think it will be like a Dame asking out type of thing,” the former Blazers guard continued.
The Blazers looked like a formidable side early on in the campaign, just like McCollum's Pelicans with a healthy Zion Williamson for that matter, before their fortunes turned midway through the season.
Damian Lillard's loyalty towards the Blazers indeed knows no bounds. But another potentially ho-hum offseason might lead to a breakup that works for both sides.