A prospective deal for Damian Lillard has not advanced as the NBA offseason drags slowly along.
The Portland Trail Blazers star, who had to put up with years of subpar play from his teammates, made it obvious that he wanted to be traded to the Miami Heat when he begged out of his contract earlier this summer.
According to reports, the Blazers aren’t holding negotiations with the Heat. Perhaps they’re hoping that another team would jump in and make an offer that they’ll find acceptable.
But as Brian Windhorst notes (via NBACentral), there is no market for Lillard outside of Miami.
The Miami Heat are the only team seriously pursuing Damian Lillard, per @WindhorstESPN
As I look across the league and have conversations with executives and agents, I can’t identify another team that is seriously making an offer for Damian Lillard at this point. My belief is pic.twitter.com/8wKF1muGk3
NBACentral (@TheDunkCentral) August 1, 2023
Lillard has always been one of the NBA’s top guards, and he recently had his greatest statistical year, averaging 32.2 points and 7.3 assists per game.
The Blazers have only reached the Western Conference Finals once during his 11 seasons with the team, and they typically lose in the first round of the playoffs.
They haven’t even reached the postseason in the past two years, and they’ve chosen a youth movement that practically guarantees they won’t be title contenders anytime soon.
Lillard, who is 33 years old, deserves a real chance to win the championship since he is one of the NBA’s most lethal players in the last seconds.
His best chance of winning the Larry O. Brien Trophy is with the Miami Heat, who recently fell to the Denver Nuggets in the NBA Finals. A hypothetical trade there would be advantageous for both parties.