Since entering the NBA in 2012, Damian Lillard has performed at a star level. In a recent Twitter Q&A, he discussed his favorite moment of his illustrious career.
For a player with five All-Star appearances, multiple Playoff series-ending buzzer beaters, and 16,250 career points under his belt, one might imagine Damian Lillard would have some difficulty picking just one standalone moment as a favorite.
Last night on Twitter, though, the Portland Trail Blazers superstar fielded questions and takes from fans — even the testy, secret ones. One fan asked him to pick what the favorite moment of his career was, to which Lillard responded with this:
It’s an interesting choice, especially when chronicling the amount of magnitude of some of the Playoff moments and shots Lillard has played a part in. It’s consistent with what we’ve come to associate with Lillard, though, and how closely-connected he is with his roots. Earlier this year, Lillard joined GQ Sports to discuss the meaning of his tattoos. The overwhelming amount of his body art steers from his roots in East Oakland.
During Portland’s bubble play, Lillard joined teammate Carmelo Anthony on What’s In Your Glass. Anthony threw him this question, and Lillard went more-in depth on why he picked this particular moment.
“We played the Warriors, I had 37. The full arena was cheering for me. It was everything about it. Like I remember, I had never played there before. We played like a scrimmage there when I was in high school, but, when we got on the bus, we pulled into the parking lot, and I remember when the bus at ORACLE (Arena) used to back into the tunnel?
We was backing into the tunnel and, you know how it be fans out there waiting? We was backing into the tunnel, and I saw like five or six of my cousins out there. People I went to high school with, they was all out there.
For those who’ve followed the Blazers since Damian Lillard’s arrival, you likely remember this moment. One night after upsetting the defending-champion Miami Heat on national television, and further establishing themselves as an NBA Cinderella story, Portland prepped for a back-to-back in Golden State. Portland, fell behind by 15 points at the half. And, as Lillard explained it:
“I had like six points at the half. We come out, we was down by like 15. And I hit like 12 shots straight. I ran off like 30 straight. We came all the way back. We ended up losing, but the crowd was going crazy. It was like they was cheering for us.”
Let history show, Lillard exaggerated nothing in regards to that memory. He produced a 12-of-16 shooting performance in the second half alone. The moment laid the blueprint for a 2012-13 Rookie of the Year award, and much of the success to follow.