In an article with the Player’s Tribune this morning, Portland Trail Blazers star Damian Lillard opened up about how growing up in Oakland shaped him, his journey to the NBA and his plans for the future.
Lillard said that growing up in Oakland meant that he sported a mentality where he told himself no one could mess with him on the basketball court.
That was my whole mindset. Still is. When I step out on that court, I’m trying to take your soul. It’s not personal. Off the court, we’re cool. But when we get out there, it’s different. I’m not here to talk trash. I’m here to take the life out of you. That’s just what it is. That’s the Oakland in me. That’s Phil. That’s my brother, my cousins, my dad, my mom. That’s us.
When it comes to his future in Portland, he made it very clear what his intentions were.
I’m saying, you think you know how deep this goes, but you have no idea. When I say that I will never, ever switch up on the city of Portland, I mean what I say. When I say that I will never, ever switch up on this organization, I mean what I say.
Lillard talked about plenty other topics, such as his time at Weber State, his relationship with his family and AAU team, and his dream of being the ultimate warrior. You can read the whole article here.