Damian Lillard fails to see “the challenge or the fun” in joining an NBA superteam.
Lillard, 29, says he appreciates the current age of so-called player empowerment, but prefers to do things his way.
Dame says he’s perfectly content to stick it out in Portland and is determined to return the Trail Blazers to their glory days.
“I think people are taking control because there’s no greater time to do it than now,” says Lillard. “And I don’t have a problem with that, but the way I see stuff is, like, I don’t prefer to go that route. Just like they’re choosing to do this stuff for their career, I’m choosing to do what I want for mine, too.”
Backcourt mate C.J. McCollum, who also signed an extension with the Blazers this summer and is putting down roots around Portland, has shown a similar commitment to Lillard’s.
“To leave, what did I invest all this time for just to leave, you know?” he says. “If I go play with three other stars, I don’t think that many people would doubt that I could win it. We would win it, but what is the challenge or the fun in that?”
Lillard knows the Blazers’ history and is adamant that he wants to be different.
“I wanna be the one, the star that wants to be here,” says Lillard. “I wanna be the one that embodies all of those things and then be a part of the rise from ‘we haven’t won since ’77, and now we won, and Dame’s everything to our city.’”