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NBA Rumors: Damian Lillard Could Play A Big Role In Terry Stotts Getting Fired By Blazers

Credit: Getty Images

Credit: Getty Images

Damian Lillard and Terry Stotts could take separate ways this summer if the head coach fails to somehow take this team to a deep playoffs run in the Western Conference. 

The Portland Trail Blazers are fighting to get a spot in the 2021 NBA playoffs but things could be harder than expected for them in the next couple of days. Before the start of the season, things looked very promising for them but the last couple of months have been rough for a team that saw his 2nd and 3rd best player go down with injuries. 

Even though Lillard fought to keep his team afloat, the situation isn't good for them and according to Shams Charania and Sam Amick of The Athletic, Terry Stotts is on the hot seat right now. There are several factors for the team to fire him and Damian Lillard's window to win a championship is a big one. 

Nearly nine years after Stotts became Trail Blazers head coach, sources say his time in the role is increasingly expected to come to an end after this season, in large part, because this team just can’t find a way to truly become elite. The Western Conference finals appearance in 2019 has been the apex of the Stotts era, with four first-round exits and two in the second round during this stretch of seven consecutive playoff berths. For the Trail Blazers, several factors — the lack of progress and adjustments over the course of the season, as well as Stotts’ stint with the franchise running its course after nine years — have made clear that the team will likely look for a fresh voice in the offseason.

If Stotts can’t “pull a rabbit out of his hat” with a playoff miracle of sorts, as one source put it, the Blazers are expected to opt for a new coaching voice. And the Damian Lillard timeline, it seems, is playing a big part here.

It seems like the Stotts' cycle with the Blazers is coming to an end and there's nothing he can do to stop that. Unless the team really makes a lot of noise in the playoffs and surprise the favorite teams in the conference, Terry is likely to be dismissed this offseason. 

Among the potential coaching candidates for the Trail Blazers, sources say: Lakers assistant Jason Kidd, Hawks interim coach Nate McMillan, 76ers assistant Dave Joerger, Clippers assistant Chauncey Billups and Spurs vice president of basketball operations Brent Barry.

Dame has made it clear he wants to win in Portland and sadly, he hasn't had the right help to take his squad to the next level. He's one of the best players in the league right now but no player has ever won the NBA title by himself.