Damian Lillard was anything but happy with the officials after the Trail Blazers took an L against the Washington Wizards on Saturday night. They entered the game with a six-game winning streak but Bradley Beal, Russell Westbrook, and co. ended it with a 118-111 win at Moda Center.
Dame wasn't too content with the referees missing some calls in the last minutes of the game, where the player considered were some questionable players from Washington. Via NBC Sports Northwest’s Chris Burkhardt, Lillard expressed his frustrations with certain plays that he considered should have gone in his favor, making it clear that he's not flopping to get the calls so this treatment felt unfair.
“For me, it’s just frustrating how physical people can be when defending me in certain situations. In our last road trip, I had back-to-back games with five fouls, about to foul out just playing normal defense," said Lillard after the game. "I’m going to the rim getting smacked in the head. I’m getting grabbed. Getting slapped on the arms. Getting pushed in the back. I mean, that’s the frustrating thing for me. I'm not out here flopping and trying to trick the referees or things like that. I'm trying to score and getting hit in the head."
Dame explained that whenever he tries to get an explanation, the refs don't pay much attention to him, which makes things worse for the point guard.
"I’m trying to have conversations about it and I’m getting slick looks and kind of like sarcastic answers or just dry answers. That's frustrating."
The league and referees have been criticized in recent days for their calls, granting fouls on plays that are regular ones while ignoring others that deserve to get a whistle. Lillard went against them and those players who faked to get calls and he still didn't get anything.
It's worth noting that the Blazers weren't that good from the floor, shooting only for 35.9% from the field. They need to improve this if the refs aren't going to give them calls. Portland will now face a direct rival in the Phoenix Suns in their fight for the 4th spot in the Western Conference. They won't have the easiest rival but this is their chance to bounce back after seeing their winning streak snapping against the Wizards.
Dame didn't have a good week; he was snubbed of the 2021 All-Star Game starters and he didn't get any love from referees during his last game.