Damian Lillard has been tied to nearly every single contending NBA team over the past couple of years. People say he's not going to stay with the Portland Trail Blazers any longer despite his alleged desire to retire at RIP City.
Lillard has blossomed into one of the most explosive scorers in the league. Then again, the Blazers have failed to live up to the task and surround him with the kind of talent he needs to thrive.
Some people believe that Lillard will join the big list of superstars who never won a ring before retiring unless he leaves the Blazers ASAP. That's why, during an AMA on Reddit, he decided to set the record straight.
Damian Lillard Says He Won't Be The First To Retire Without A Ring
"We play in an era right now, where you get criticized for not winning a ring as if it is not the hardest thing to do in sports. There are so many people who have played a full career without achieving that because it's so hard to do and so many things have to be aligned," Lillard said. "That's why people love and cherish that moment so much and that's why we do all the things we do to have an opportunity at it because it's such a hard thing to accomplish. I don't believe in the ring or bust thing, I'm not a fan of that and that's why I don't play my career to that narrative."
Lillard Takes A Shot At Local Media
Lillard has been frustrated with the way the media has handled his situation and the Blazers' bad season. Recently, he confronted local reporters for not paying him the same respect he's shown for them:
"I’ve done so much in my career, specifically in Portland. I’ve given everything," the All-Star guard said. "I’ve never made an excuse, I’ve never disrespected any of y’all, I’ve never not given you guys time. Just when our team is going through it, I’m in a bit of a struggle you know, I see people not giving me that same respect. So that’s why I’m a little irritated in here, but with my team I’m happy with what we did.”
At the end of the day, people will talk more when things are going wrong than when a player is having success, so that's just a part of the business. Now, whether Lillard will eventually leave or not, it seems like he'll have to make a choice sooner or later.