Damian Lillard’s participation in Team USA’s minicamp will be cut short. The Trail Blazers guard will be returning home to fulfill other commitments as the action continues in Las Vegas. According to ESPN’s Chris Haynes, Lillard’s exit was planned.
Haynes broke the news on Friday.
Portland guard Damian Lillard has returned home from attending Team USA minicamp, league sources tell ESPN. Due to other summer commitments, it was understood he would only attend first portion of camp.— Chris Haynes (@ChrisBHaynes) July 27, 2018
The Oakland native has participated in Team USA camps in the past, but has yet to make the final roster for a major competition. He was cut from the Team USA squad in 2014, which led to him declining their invite in 2015. He also dropped out of consideration in 2016.
The current pool of players are acclimating to coach Greg Popovich’s first minicamp at the helm. The long-time San Antonio coach will be filling the role vacated by coach Mike Krzyzewski in the lead up to the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
Lillard is coming off a impressive 2017-18 season. The former Weber State standout was featured in the All-Star Game, and was awarded a spot on the 1st Team All-NBA squad.