Damian Lillard will enter a new NBA season with the Portland Trail Blazers, trying to compete again in the Western Conference. The point guard was linked with several rumors during the offseason. The Blazers were eliminated in the first round of the playoff again, sparking a lot of reactions.
The All-Star made it clear he wants to win in Portland, but the team needs to provide the right pieces. This offseason wasn't the case, which led to rumors about the player requesting a trade.
Well, he's set to stay put in Portland at least for one more season, trying to see if the front office can pull off a big move that will make them contenders. One of the new faces the team will have this season is Chauncey Billups, who is replacing Terry Stotts as the head coach.
Many people believe this won't make a big difference with Dame, but the point guard is ready for the challenge, always trying to do the best for his team. Asked about his first impressions of Billups, the 31-year-old said that Chauncey's mindset is different from what he's seen before.
“It’s a player’s mind. Smarter instead of harder,” Lillard said during Tuesday’s media availability. “Like, ‘Why would you do this when you could be doing this?’ He’s thinking the game like a point guard.”
Both Billups and Lillard have a big mission this upcoming season. They need to turn things around at Moda Center and make this team a competitive one. Nobody is convinced they will be able to do better than the 8th seed, but anything can happen in the NBA.
Dame is ready to help the franchise this campaign. Time will tell if he keeps that same mentality next year.