It is that time of the year again, the All-NBA teams were released on Thursday and the Portland Trail Blazers did not have a player on any of the three teams. Star point guard Damian Lillard made the All-NBA Second Team last season, but was left off this year. Lillard received only 12 votes after improving his numbers from his 2015-16 campaign. This came as a surprise to some media members, who believe that Lillard was snubbed.
Lillard put a limited Blazers team on his back to make a postseason berth. He also was snubbed for the NBA All-Star team in a West loaded with elite guards.
Seems like we're constantly talking about Lillard in terms of not being appreciated. The star point guard, who just completed his fifth season in the NBA, has upped his production every year. Fueled by the fact that he was snubbed from the All-Star Game yet again, Lillard led Portland to a strong 12-4 finish and the No. 8 seed in the West, but they were swept by the Golden State Warriors in the first round.
If this was all bluster from Lillard, we wouldn’t care. But the Trail Blazers point guard just had the best season of his career. The man averaged 27 points, five rebounds, and six assists on 59 percent True Shooting Percentage, after all, and couldn’t make either awards teams.
In fact, Lillard made both the All-Star roster and the All-NBA third team in 2014, only to see just one more All-Star (2015) and All-NBA (2016) appearance follow. It’s rare you see a player make both teams, dramatically improve his stats over the following three seasons, and then get snubbed.
While it was a very close race for the last spot for guards on the All-NBA team, Lillard led his team to the playoffs, with one of the weakest rosters compared to the rest of the guards. Some believe that Lillard was an All-NBA caliber point guard this season and the rest of the NBA should be ready to for motivated Lillard in 2017-18.