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Lillard Reflects on “Strange” Visit to the Bay Area

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Oakland native and Trail Blazers star Damian Lillard spoke with Yahoo Sports NBA Insider Chris Haynes about returning to the Bay Area in the COVID-19 era.

Portland Trail Blazers v Golden State Warriors Photo by Noah Graham/NBAE via Getty Images

The Trail Blazers emerged from their two-game trip to the Bay Area with a win and a loss. Off the court, Oakland native Damian Lillard endured an odd trip to his former stomping grounds during the Blazers’ two-game series against the Warriors. Due to the NBA’s COVID-19 protocols, Lillard was unable to visit his family in the area.

Lillard spoke to Yahoo Sports NBA insider Chris Haynes about the Blazers’ recent road trip.

“Usually, I’ll go across the bridge and go see my grandma and everyone will show up there,” Lillard told Yahoo Sports. “Aside from the playoffs, this is the longest I’ve been back home without seeing them. It’s strange. I talk to a lot of my relatives and I know they’re getting tested routinely with negative results, but there’s nothing I can do right now. It’s disappointing because it’s something I look forward to when I come back home.”

Outside of the current trip, Lillard told Haynes that he hopes everyone stays safe until life returns to normal.

“I just hope things turn back to normal and everyone stays safe,” Lillard said. “This is something we’re all dealing with, but it does hit home now that I’m back. Hopefully, we can all get back to our families soon.”

In regards to his hometown team, Lillard revealed that it is always a special occasion in his eyes.

“I always look forward to playing against my hometown team, but this is definitely a weird situation,” Lillard told Yahoo Sports. “I’m used to hanging with my family after games and making a few visits. But we’re here to do a job. Hopefully we take care of business and hopefully I can see my family next time.”

The Blazers return home to Portland to face the Bulls on Tuesday.

You can read the full story from Haynes at Yahoo Sports.