The Portland Trail Blazers are not trading All-Star point guard Damian Lillard. Never. Not ever. No thank you. The end.
That is the conclusion of Ben Golliver and Andrew Sharp in Sports Illustrated’s Open Floor Podcast. During the latest edition, the analysts tackled the Lillard trade question, then printed a transcript to make sure we got the point.
Here’s the start of it:
Andrew Sharp: I am of two minds of where the Blazers are now because on the one hand, I agree with what you are saying where you are not going to get back equal value if you give up someone like C.J. McCollum or Damian Lillard, like it’s not going to work out that way. You can try to trade Lillard for Ben Simmons and launch a new era but past that, it’s not going to work.
Ben Golliver: The Lillard trade is not going to happen. That is the one thing that bugs me when I read about how other people will try to fix the Blazers. They will not do that. Lillard will be the untouchable piece until the end of time—it will be the other guys they look to move and I think that’s the problem—none of those other guys really have much trade value.
Sharp: I understand what you are saying there and I do think that the Blazers will be able to stabilize things over the next month or two. They literally do this every year where they go through one or two months on the brink and then Dame will get hot and I bet in February or March we are going to be like ‘Oh my god look at the Blazers’. We will go through the motions again.
The part I worry about though, is that you talked about coach Stotts squeezing the last bit of lemonade out of these lemons and I think that sometimes it happens to an entire organization. You talked about the fans kinda being a little bit fit lifeless this year and I think we have seen it in Houston, we have seen it in Washington, and eventually we saw it with the Clippers a couple years ago. When you come up short over and over again, it starts to take a toll on everyone involved in the process.
Through the discussion, Sharp takes the devil’s advocate position but Golliver’s assertions are more direct and specific to the Trail Blazers. Check out the article for the full conversation and the podcast for even more.