Damian Lillard reportedly approved a trade to the Milwaukee Bucks or Brooklyn Nets ten days ago, after the Portland Trail Blazers’ negotiations with the Miami Heat remained at a standstill for most of the summer. Lillard had originally, and semi-publicly, stated that the Heat were his only preferred destination after requesting a trade on the first of July. Lillard’s agent, Aaron Goodwin—earlier censured by the NBA for allegedly stalling talks of alternate trade destinations—supposedly let the Bucks and Nets know that the star point guard would be interested in playing for them.
The news comes via a tweet by Marc J. Spears of andscape:
Sources to @andscape: With Miami talks going nowhere, agent Aaron Goodwin privately told the Bucks and Nets 10 days ago that Dame would be interested in a deal there. The Raptors were a real contender to land the ex-Blazers star, but ultimately Bucks got it done per Woj report.
As the summer wound on and no trade materialized, Lillard received increasing criticism from fans and media for limiting his trade preference list to a single team. This report may ease some of those concerns, or it may be an ex post facto attempt to put that issue to bed.
The deal went through earlier today, sending Lillard to the Bucks—plus center Jusuf Nurkic, forward Nassir Little, and guard Keon Johnson to the Phoenix Suns—for point guard Jrue Holiday, center Deandre Ayton, forward Toumani Camara, and future draft picks.