With the ongoing situation relating to where Damian Lillard may end up next season, the long-time Trail Blazer man has now been strongly linked with a potential Detroit Pistons trade.
The 33-year-old was drafted to the Portland Trail Blazers back in 2012 and has played his part in getting the team to the post-season in eight of his eleven seasons at the Moda Center, but by all accounts, he’s ready to move on in order to get closer to a maiden NBA title.
Lillard apparently wants a move to the Heat and formally made his trade request on July 2nd, and as well as interest from the Pistons, the Brooklyn Nets are also paying close attention to proceedings.
Any Pistons fans wanting to jump on such a potential addition to their roster in order to back Detroit in the betting would do well to check out Michigan legal sportsbooks to find out which brand or provider offers the best odds on their team.
It’s 20 years since the Pistons last won an NBA title, and the fact that the team has suffered losing seasons in each of their last four campaigns must surely be a factor that would play into Lillard’s thinking.
If he were to want to land at a team with genuine NBA title potential, then clearly, there are other locations more likely to hit the spot unless he felt that there was a chance of a turnaround in fortunes for the team.
The fact that head coach Dwayne Casey has been replaced by Monty Williams could work in the deal’s favor, but even then, such a trade would seemingly be very unlikely to come off and may just lead to the Heat stumping up more to secure their target.
Either way, it does seem that the Trail Blazers know they are fighting a losing battle to keep Lillard, with ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski stating of the situation;
“For teams calling about trading for Damian Lillard, the message from the Portland Trail Blazers has been unambiguous: Bring your best offer and make your team our preferred trade destination,”
“General manager Joe Cronin doesn’t plan to operate a transfer portal to the Miami Heat and dutifully deliver history’s greatest Blazer to his targeted team.” Wojnarowski added.
Cronin has resigned himself to losing Lillard but wants the best deal possible, which will no doubt mean that talk of any deal will run long and deep into the season break before it’s done;
“We have been clear that we want Dame here, but he notified us today he wants out, and he’d prefer to play someplace else,”
“What has not changed for us is that we’re committed to winning, and we are going to do what’s best for the team in pursuit of that goal.” Cronin explained.
Lillard’s desire to challenge for the NBA title is a valid one given that in his eleven seasons at Portland, he’s never really gotten that close to doing so; the closest he’s got has been a Conference final whitewash when the Golden State Warriors defeated the Trail Blazers in four games back in 2018-19.