(via The Oregonian)

Raja Bell had big praise for Damian Lillard after the latter’s recent performances in the bubble. Dame has been unstoppable in recent games and he doesn’t seem to be stopping anytime soon. Bell compared the All-Star point guard to his old nemesis, Kobe Bryant.

Bell surely knows one or two things about Kobe and his game, so this comparison must be taken very seriously. Bell just said that Lillard is the “closest thing” to the Black Mamba in the current NBA. During an appearance on the latest episode of The Ringer NBA Show, Raja compared Kobe and Lillard’s “killer mentality.”

A couple of years ago, Kobe had warned everybody about Lillard and his talents. He often doesn’t get the respect he deserves, but Bell is trying to change that.

“I feel like Dame is the closest thing to Kobe that there is in the game,” Raja Bell said of the Blazers star and Los Angeles Lakers legend, per Jonathan Warner of NBC Sports Northwest. “I don’t mean that from the standpoint of the way they look doing it, I’m talking about mentality, where it is always in assassin mode type of thing with them.

“They’re always kind of creating a chip. There is just always something to prove and you feel that when you watch them play, there is the respect that they feel like they have earned and they are not given and the greats have to do that, right? That’s what keeps you on point and keeps you questing for the next thing. He is, for me, a problem. If I had to guard him, I don’t even know really where I would start. The range is what it is and he is shifty and he is sneaky athletic.”

Lillard has been challenged in recent days after being taunted by Patrick Beverley and Paul George of the Los Angeles Clippers, as well as Skip Bayless, who stated he wasn’t ‘buying that Dame time’. Well, the point guard has been playing terrific following these events and he’s ready to keep this pace to take his team to the postseason.

Yes, Dame and Kobe shared that similarity. Besides, Lillard has demonstrated he’s not afraid of taking clutch shots, just like Kobe in his days. Lillard has scored 111 points in the last two games in the bubble after getting challenged; that reminds me of one guy who used to wear the #24 jersey of the Los Angeles Lakers.