Damian Lillard is tough as nails. He'll play through injury if his team needs him, and is one of the best leaders in the NBA. Sadly, that hasn't translated into much success and he's yet to play in the NBA Finals.
Lillard is a dominant scorer and one of the best clutch performers in the league. Sadly, his team's front office hasn't exactly done a good job of surrounding him with the kind of supporting cast that he needs, and Terry Stotts coaching wasn't exactly great at times either.
That's why Hall of Famer Shaquille O'Neal thinks he should try and force a move out of the Portland Trail Blazers right now, as he's just not going to be able to win a ring in this era of superteams.
Shaq Says Damian Lillard Needs To Leave The Blazers Now
(Transcript via ClutchPoints)
“He is an old school mentality guy that’s playing in the new school. The old-school guy would say, ‘I’m not teaming up with you, I’m gonna beat you’. But these new school guys would say, ‘hey, let’s team up to make it easier’. So that’s the toughest decision for him.”
“I know he wants to stay in Portland and win it out. But he may have to switch up his mentality… if everybody else is doing it, then that’s just gonna keep him further from winning a championship… Should he go to a contender if he wants to brighten his chance of winning a championship? I’d say he should do that. I don’t really like guys teaming up, but it’s just the way it is these days. If he can get to a team that already has two or three guys, and you add him. That raises his chances of winning a championship.”
Although in different circumstances, Shaq knows what it's like to leave the team that drafted you to compete elsewhere. Lillard has been vocal about his desire to stay in Portland forever, but that may also mean retiring without a ring.
Lillard is reportedly frustrated with the team right now so everything could change in the blink of an eye, especially if they struggle again to make a deep run in the playoffs. For now, he's not going anywhere.
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