trail-blazers’-damian-lillard-addresses-ramped-up-trade-rumors

Portland Trail Blazers star Damian Lillard vowed he’s staying with the team – at least for now.

Lillard’s name had been mentioned in many trade rumors in the middle of the offseason as he ended the 2020-21 season and competed in the Tokyo Olympics. He previously denied a report he was going to ask for a trade and made clear in an interview with The Athletic he has no plans to move anywhere.

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“You get to a position where it’s like, ‘Do I defend myself or do I just say nothing?’ For me, when I’m just hearing stuff that’s not the facts, I’m going to say I didn’t say that,” he told the outlet on Wednesday. “Some things I’ve just got to let it be said. I know what the truth is. I know where I stand. It’s not my duty to make the public know … it’s not my job to make them aware of what that is.

“It definitely has been different. I feel like I’ve handled it like I’ve handled everything. I just let it happen. I let people talk and I just stay true to who I am and I stand on that. If I say something, I stand on what I said. It is what it is, at this point.”

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He added in an Instagram Live session: “I’m not leaving PDX. Not right now at least.”

Lillard has starred for the Trail Blazers since the 2012-13 season and led the team to the Western Conference Finals in 2019.

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He is a six-time NBA All-Star and six-time All-NBA First Team selection. He’s played in 682 games and is averaging 24.7 points and 6.6 assists during his career.

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