After being selected as an All-Star reserve on Thursday, Damian Lillard has now accepted an invitation to the NBA’s 3-point contest as well.
As he usually is, Damian Lillard will once again be a busy man over the 69th All-Star weekend, as he will be competing in both the All-Star game and the 3-point contest, after NBA Insider Chris Haynes reported the Portland Trail Blazers‘ star had accepted an invite to the shootout yesterday evening.
While the majority of Rip City’s fanbase slightly peeved at the fact that Luka Doncic earned a spot in the starting line-up over Lillard, it was never a discussion that Dame wouldn’t be headlining the reserve spots. Lillard finished with 1,337,540 fan votes and ranked third over each category of voting (fan, player, media).
This will be Lillard’s fifth time playing in the ASG, and now his third year in a row. Dame certainly deserved it, and if there was any doubt, his inspired play over the last month likely confirmed his status. On the season, Lillard is averaging career highs in points, assists, and free throw attempts, and in January, he ranks first in points scored, three’s made, and scooped up a conference player of the week after averaging 52, 7 and 9 over a 3-game span.
As well as the ASG, Dame will now also be competing in the 3-point contest, his third time doing so. Although Lillard is yet to win the contest, this year seems like a good chance to finally claim the title. Lillard is currently making a career-best 3.8 threes a game, and recently became just the second player in league history to hit 8+ triples in three straight games.
Dame felt disrespected a few years ago when he wasn’t getting the plaudits he felt he deserved, but now, he’s an annual lock, and doesn’t shy away in a game filled with other stars. Last year, he was perhaps the story of the game, going for 18 points and even earning the walk-off interview.
The 3-point contest will be on Feb 15, part of NBA All-Star Saturday, and the game will be the following day, at the United Center, Chicago.