Lillard wants to cement his legacy in Portland.
Damian Lillard has made a name for himself in the NBA as a player who refuses to join a superteam. So many of the league's stars have left the teams they were drafted by to create powerhouses teams while Lillard has maintained his allegiance to the city of Portland. He feels as though winning a championship with the Blazers would be much more impactful than a title with a superteam and in many ways, he's right. It's exactly why the Toronto Raptors championship this past year was so groundbreaking.
When asked about this philosophy, Lillard told Marc J. Spears of The Undefeated that one player, in particular, was his inspiration. Of course, the player in question is Dirk Nowitzki who played 20 seasons with the Dallas Mavericks and ended up winning a championship in the second half of his career.
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“He just stayed with it,” Lillard said. “I respect what Dirk did. Like, I see that and I’m like, ‘It’ll be worth it. I know it was worth it for him,’ you know what I’m saying? Like, he’ll be forever, ever, ever respected in Dallas and in the league. So that’s like what I see from myself.”
If Lillard were to win a championship with the Blazers, he would immediately become a legend of the game. It's certainly a tall task but if he does it, you'd have to give him his props.