Even though Damian Lillard hasn’t shown explicit signs of not returning to the Portland Trail Blazers for the upcoming season, he’s making it more apparent that he wants to play for the Miami Heat.
Yesterday, there were reports that he had stopped following the Portland Trail Blazers on Instagram in light of the trade rumors surrounding him. Today, he shared a post that hinted at Miami’s anticipation of his arrival and music.
Dame reposted this on IG 😅 pic.twitter.com/ZRIlxZf9U0
— NBACentral (@TheDunkCentral) August 21, 2023
Considering his trade request from the Blazers last month, Damian Lillard has consistently expressed his desire to join the Miami Heat, even as other teams like the Utah Jazz, Oklahoma City, and the Boston Celtics show interest.
The NBA responded to the situation’s transparency by sending a memo to all teams, warning that players failing to fulfill their contractual obligations after a trade could face disciplinary action.
Speculative rumors circulated about Lillard’s agent, Aaron Goodwin, possibly communicating Lillard’s preference for the Heat over other teams in a trade. However, both Lillard and Goodwin informed the NBA that he wouldn’t refuse to play if traded elsewhere, as reported by ESPN’s Tim Bontemps.
As the situation continues, only the Heat have emerged as significant contenders in trade discussions, and the scenario might extend into the training camp period. The Blazers’ GM, Joe Cronin, stated that they intend to be patient during Lillard trade negotiations.
Cronin emphasized the value of patience, saying, “I’ve come to understand that patience is incredibly important. It’s essential not to react hastily or make quick decisions to appear to resolve issues. The teams that have achieved the best outcomes after trades are those that have been meticulous and deliberate, avoiding impulsiveness and maintaining a controlled sense of urgency.”
Lillard still has a minimum of three years left on his contract and also holds a player option for the 2026-27 season. In the 2022-23 NBA season, Damian Lillard showcased strong performance, averaging 32.2 points, 4.8 rebounds, and 7.3 assists over the course of 58 games for the Blazers.