l’essentielAfter 11 seasons in Portland and playing over 830 games, the 33-year-old point guard is about to start a new chapter in his career with Milwaukee, where his partnership with Antetokounmpo is already generating excitement.
The star player of the Portland Trail Blazers, Damian Lillard, announced on Wednesday that he is leaving his longtime franchise to join the Milwaukee Bucks of Giannis Antetokounmpo. Lillard confirmed this news on X (formerly known as Twitter), saying, « Excited to start a new chapter! @Bucks. » This information was also reported by several media outlets, including ESPN. Lillard, who has been selected to the All-Star Game seven times, added, « The fans of the Trail Blazers and the city of Portland, which I deeply love, will be sincerely honored. Stay tuned. »
Milwaukee… IT’S DAME TIME! ⏱️#FearTheDeer pic.twitter.com/xPR2uL6Q4n
— Milwaukee Bucks (@Bucks) September 28, 2023
Lillard, who is 33 years old, expressed his desire to leave Portland in July, stating a preference for the Miami Heat. However, he ultimately ended up with the Bucks just under a month before the start of the 2023-2024 season. He will now join forces with Giannis Antetokounmpo, a two-time regular season MVP (2019 and 2020) and reigning champion in 2021. Antetokounmpo had put pressure on his team in July, explaining that he would not sign a contract extension unless he was convinced that his team would remain competitive in pursuit of the NBA title.
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In a typical three-way billiards shot in the NBA, Lillard’s departure involves player exchanges between Portland, Milwaukee, and the Phoenix Suns. The Trail Blazers notably welcome Jrue Holiday and Deandre Ayton. Lillard, a highly skilled shooter and prolific scorer, known for his composure in the final seconds of close games, averaged 32.2 points and 7.3 assists in 58 games last year but failed to qualify for the playoffs for the second consecutive season.