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Lowe: Blazers G Damian Lillard Has "Really Struggled Defensively"

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Portland Trail Blazers rookie guard Damian Lillard has lots of work to do defensively, according to one writer.

Matthew Emmons-US PRESSWIRE

Zach Lowe of Grantland.com writes that Portland Trail Blazers rookie guard Damian Lillard has work to do on the defense end.

Most rookies struggle on defense, and Lillard's offensive game is ahead of even the highest expectations, so all is good here in the big picture. But Lillard has really struggled defensively. He's often caught way out of position against on-ball screens, and sometimes gets stuck so far under them as to take himself out of the play. He's had major trouble navigating off-ball screens, and Deron Williams, a master at moving around the court without the ball, got away from Lillard over and over - until Terry Stotts hid Lillard on Keith Bogans. Dion Waiters is having some of the same issues, and Kyrie Irving did last year; Williams could still be seen two weeks ago in Brooklyn shaking Irving via a thicket of off-ball screens. Lillard will get it, but in the meantime, it's almost a relief to be reminded that point guard defense does matter.

-- Ben Golliver | benjamin.golliver@gmail.com | Twitter