Damian Lillard is the star point guard for the Portland Trail Blazers and is considered by many NBA fans to be one of the best point guards of this generation. Despite showing incredible loyalty and commitment to his franchise, he has been unable to win an NBA championship so far in his career.
Some have even argued that Lillard has no real interest in contending for a title and is happy with how things are going in his life. However, that wouldn’t be a completely accurate statement. In fact, there was once a time when Dame was confident in his team’s ability to make the NBA Finals. Let us take a deeper look and find out more.
Damian Lillard believed the Portland Trail Blazers could make the NBA Finals back in 2018
Many fans might remember the 2018-2019 NBA season. It was a time when Dame was entering his prime with the Blazers. He was 28 years old at the time and paired alongside CJ McCollum with the hopes of creating a star duo within the Portland Trail Blazers.
They even managed to make it all the way to the Western Conference Finals that season after finishing as the 3rd seed in the Conference. However, they ended up getting eliminated by Stephen Curry and the Golden State Warriors. Moreover, this happened within just 4 games with Lillard and the squad being unable to win a single game in the series.
Having taken his team further than he ever did before led to a surge in positivity and confidence from Dame. He revealed to ESPN that his belief had not wavered, “Good things come to good people, even if you get swept somewhere along the way. This is what goes through my mind: I’m gonna be in my 11th year or something here, I’m gonna stick with it, and we’re gonna make the Finals.”
Although the Blazers star made it clear that he believed this team could make the NBA Finals, he also shared that failing to do so wouldn’t be the end of the world, “I’ve treated people the right way. I’ve put in the work. And because of that, if it doesn’t happen, I can live with it. I’ll have enjoyed the ride. It’s worth it.”
Now, almost 4 years later, it looks like Dame will have to live with it and enjoy the ride he has been on so far. After all, his team is as far away from an NBA title as it gets after finishing the 2022-2023 NBA season as the 13th seed in the Western Conference.