Damian Lillard apparently exchanged to Bucks from Overcoats.

Damian Lillard apparently exchanged to Bucks from Overcoats

Damian Lillard is gearing up for a trade to play alongside Giannis Antetokounmpo with the Milwaukee Bucks, as reported by someone familiar with the deal on Wednesday. This trade, which concludes his 11-year run with the Trail Blazers, has been a three-month saga filled with hopes of winning an NBA title somewhere else. It’s a multi-team trade that also involves the Phoenix Suns.

The seven-time All-Star, a player who was selected for the NBA’s 75th Anniversary Team, finds himself in a multi-team deal that sends him from the Trail Blazers to the Bucks, who in turn send Jiro Holiday to the Portland and D’Andre Ayton to the Phoenix Suns. According to an Associated Press source who spoke on condition of anonymity because none of the teams announced the deal, this trade involves teams that had not officially announced the deal.

Damian Lillard

Associated Press
ESPN has reported

ESPN has reported that Portland also gets an unprotected 2029 first-round draft pick and two unprotected first-round pick swaps in 2028 and 2030 from Portland, further enhancing their future prospects.

This trade saga became famous on July 1st when  Lillard, who had long been compared to a loyalist, looked at his desire to play for a contender and realized that Portland wasn’t likely to provide that opportunity with their current roster. He wanted to go to Miami, and he made it clear. Portland, however, decided not to oblige and instead, they’re the team now with the immensely powerful 1-2 punch of Lillard and Antetokounmpo, ready to make a strong push for the upcoming season.

surprising defeat

In response to their stunning loss in the first round of the playoffs against Miami, the trade drama continued, resulting in dramatic changes in the boxing offseason. They removed Coach Mike Budenholzer and brought in Adrian Griffin in his place, who had spent the last five seasons as an assistant with the Toronto Raptors. Now they’ve secured Lillard in a deal that involves two-time All-Star Holiday, who has been a seven-time All-NBA selection.

surprising defeat
Lillard’s acquisition

Lillard’s acquisition comes after MVP Antetokounmpo told The New York Times during the summer that they wanted to see what the Bucks were willing to offer on a long-term deal before committing to staying in Milwaukee, how determined they were to win another championship before signing a long-term contract to stay in Milwaukee. Giannis Antetokounmpo’s contract runs through the 2024-25 season, with a player option for 2025-26.

“Bringing Lillard to Milwaukee: A Strong Recommendation”

Bringing Lillard to Milwaukee is certainly a strong recommendation, indicating determination. This high-scoring guard keeps Milwaukee even more competitive in the Eastern Conference challengers, even when compared to Miami. When Lillard’s request was made public through the Blazers, General Manager Jon Horst stated that they would do what’s best for the team while trying to “make his aspirations easier.” In the end, the Bucks’ deal is what Horst and the Blazers believe is best for everyone involved. The trade involved a substantial package, especially considering that Lillard is owed a considerable sum over the next four years. He is set to earn nearly $46 million in the upcoming season and could potentially make up to $216 million over the next four years if he exercises his option for the 2026-27 season.

This is a significant, and potentially very lucrative investment, as  Lillard numbers could make the Bucks contenders for more titles. He averaged 32.2 points per game last season, and in each of the past eight seasons, he’s scored at least 24 points per game, a feat only a few players in the NBA can claim.

Remarkable Achievement

seventh player
Remarkable Achievement

He became just the seventh player in NBA history to score 70 or more points in a game with 71 against the Houston Rockets on February 26. Others on this list include Wilt Chamberlain (who did it five times), Kobe Bryant, David Thompson, David Robinson, Elgin Baylor, and Devin Booker. All 23 of these players were between the ages of 23 and 28 when they scored 70 or more points in a game. Lillard is 32, which is a clear indicator that – even after 11 NBA seasons – he’s still far from past his prime. He’s been great. The Blazers aren’t. And it’s clear they hadn’t seen him changing anytime soon. Lillard was beloved in Portland, but speculations about his future intensified when the Blazers opted to package young shooting guard Scottie Barnes, who was selected third overall in the June draft, instead of making an immediate move that could help. The team was in disarray.

Portland has won just four playoff series in Lillard’s 11 seasons, reaching the Western Conference Finals once. The team went 33-49 last season, marking two consecutive years of good playoff performance out of the picture.

This isn’t  Lillard fault. His career average of 25.2 points per game puts him at 11th among all players who have appeared in at least 500 games in NBA history. He’s played in at least 50-point games in 17 games during his career – including two in the playoffs – and he’s the defending season scoring leader, NBA All-Star, and an award-winning performer.

Olympic gold medalist

He’s an Olympic gold medalist, a consensus selection for the NBA’s Most Valuable Player (MVP) during the 2020 season when the “Bubble” season restarted amidst the COVID-19 pandemic in the Walt Disney World, and he even won the three-point contest in February.

And he’s got the full dramatics. His game-winning shot to eliminate the Oklahoma City Thunder from the 2019 NBA playoffs – a nearly 40-foot 3-pointer over Paul George as time expired – is not just a Portland highlight but one of the iconic post-season moments in NBA history.

Sports Info: Manchester United

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