It’s nearly been two months since Damian Lillard demanded a trade away from the Portland Trail Blazers, preferably to the Miami Heat. However, since his reported July 1 trade demand, there has been no traction in trade talks between the Blazers and any other team (including the Heat). That’s not entirely surprising, especially after Blazers’ general manager said that this process could take “months” during a press conference last month.
Nevertheless, that doesn’t mean there shouldn’t be added urgency for the Blazers to find a trade (to the Heat or any other suitor) before the start of training camp. Portland is slated to open its training camp in early October. We explore five reasons the Blazers must find a Lillard trade before then.
5 Reasons Damian Lillard trade must be done before the Portland Trail Blazers open training camp
The potential of Damian Lillard emerging as a distraction
It may not be in his DNA or the type of person he’s built his NBA reputation on, but what if Damian Lillard decides to make things messy to get his demand? What if his relationship with Blazers general manager Joe Cronin is in a place where Lillard would want to hold out from training camp or do a sitdown interview to paint the organization and its decision-makers in a bad light?
Many never believed that Lillard would never demand a trade away from the Blazers, yet here we are. The last thing the young, promising Blazers players need heading into the start of training camp is a distraction.
Even if Lillard shows up to camp and says all the right things; he’ll still be a distraction with questions about his future being at the center of the start of the Blazers’ season.
While it may not be likely in the mids of some, perhaps even to some in the Blazers’ front office, Lillard emerging as a distraction is not something you can entirely count out from happening.