DAME: "I got love for everybody in the [Blazers] organization."

The best post-trade interview with Dame that I've seen. This part was super cool:

How do you reflect on your time in Portland on and off the floor and what you’re able to accomplish there? And then how do you also reflect on the painful way it ended?

Just looking back on it, I always look at what made it painful to have to walk away. And more than anything, it is not the game winners and all of those things. It’s the people that I’ve crossed paths with. A lot of my best friends live there now. Basically, half of my family, my closest family, live in Portland. The initiatives in the community, the people who supported those things and just building real relationships with those people and becoming so connected, to have to walk away from it for something that I desire for myself was hard. So just when I reflect on it, it’s something I’m proud of, something that I’ll continue to have a presence in.

But as far as the basketball side, it was a great run as well. The last two years we struggled and as you get further along in your career and you haven’t won, you want an opportunity to win. And I think we were just going in different directions. And obviously, the love, I think, is mutual. I love the organization. I believe that they love me the same, but at the end of the day, we all know that it’s a business and for me to be at this point and not have won, I want an opportunity to win. I’ve always said that I’m willing to walk away and not win if we were going after it at all costs and that opportunity never came. So now that I’m in this situation, I feel like I’m in a great position to have a chance to win. I’m excited. And now that the past is the past, I always will love Portland. I’ll always love the fans. It’ll always be home for me at this point. Love the organization and everybody that I’ve crossed paths with, but this is where we are now. So, it is just time to move forward.

I get the sense that while you didn’t perhaps like how it ended, you don’t sound bitter?

Oh, not at all. You hear this is the business. The business goes this way, the business goes that way sometimes, but I just never thought that I would have a negative experience with it. But even with that being said, I don’t have a personal issue with anybody in the organization.


Nobody. It is not personal at all for me. I got love for everybody in the organization and I mean that. I’m not just saying it, it’s just that I’ve always said what I want to accomplish. I wanted it to happen there. And when you see things start to get off track and that reality not to be possible anymore, people start to feel a way and things happen. But I don’t have no personal issues with anybody. I’m excited to be here now and we just move forward.