Lillard Discusses NBA Offseason News On Dan Patrick, XM Radio, SI.com

Trail Blazers point guard Damian Lillard, in between running a popular local hoops camp and getting in a boxing workout, hit the NBA media circuit bright and early Monday morning to help promote the Powerade “Power Your School” program, which is giving away $2,000 to the athletic department of 500 schools. And as you can probably guess, at least if you’ve been paying attention to the NBA offseason, many of the questions posed to Lillard pertain to Carmelo Anthony, Kyrie Irving and Paul George. Let’s review…

• First, Lillard joined the Dan Patrick Show, guest hosted by Chris Mannix while Patrick and his staff are shooting an Adam Sandler movie (and people say athletes make too much money…), which you can listen to here. They literally didn’t get five seconds into the interview before Carmelo Anthony’s name came up.

In regards to the conversation Lillard had with Anthony…

Damian Lillard: “It wasn’t really a pitch. I just reached out to him and let him know that the interest just wasn’t from our front office, if it was a possibility then there was interest from the players as well. I didn’t want that to be confused. I didn’t put no pressure on him or ask a bunch of questions, I just said what it was from our end.”

Whether Anthony said he’d waive his no-trade clause to come to Portland…

Damian Lillard: “I didn’t get a sense that he wouldn’t. I think what we have here is a good situations for him. That’s kind of where it went. I just let him know what I thought he could do for our team and what our team could do with his presence, and that was it. We didn’t go over those details and go over a no-trade clause or anything like that. He’s gonna make his own decision to do that or not and I just wanted to make sure that we had some kind of conversation.”

• Next up, Lillard went on Sirius XM NBA Radio with co-hosts Tina Cervasio and Mitch Lawrence. The discussion eventually turned to Cavaliers guard Kyrie Irving, who has reportedly asked to be traded despite playing for a team that has made the NBA Finals the last three seasons. Lillard said that while some might consider it crazy to not want to play alongside Lebron James, we should respect Irving’s perspective…

Damian Lillard: “None of us have been in those shoes. You’ve got to respect his mind and respect his heart. At the end of the day, he’s a man and he’s going to follow and do what he wants to do. I think everybody across the league respects it. They won a championship, they’ve had ups and downs like everybody else, but he had his heart set on other things and you’ve got to respect that.”

Lillard also was asked about Paul George joining Russell Westbrook in Oklahoma City after being traded to the Thunder, a Northwest Division rival…

Damian Lillard: “It’ll be interesting to see how it works. You put two great players like that on the same team and anything can happen. I wish they weren’t in my division, but that’s a big trade for them. We would have liked to have him here in Portland but that didn’t work out, so we’ll see how it goes. I expect a lot of excitement over there.”

• Finally, Lillard, sitting in the theater at the Trail Blazers’ practice facility in Tualatin, joined SI.com’s Maggie Gray for an interview on Sports Illustrated Now, where the conversation once again turned to Kyrie Irving, who reportedly is envious Lillard’s status as the face of the franchise. Gray asks if Lillard’s situation is better than Irving’s in Cleveland and whether he would ever request a trade to get away from Lebron James, both of which are impossible questions to answer, though Dame gives it his best shot.

Damian Lillard: “I don’t know because I’ve never played with LeBron. Just watching from the outside, you see how easy he makes the game for everybody else. I’m not sure what it’s like playing with LeBron in person but the player, I’m not sure why anybody wouldn’t want to play with him.”

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