Blazers Rumors: Damian Lillard Only Player Unavailable at NBA Trade DeadlineDecember 17, 2021
Damian Lillard is reportedly the only player on the Portland Trail Blazers not on the market, according to ESPN's Brian Windhorst.
"I talked to an executive this week who told me every single Portland Trail Blazer is available, with the exception of Dame," Windhorst said on The Hoop Collective podcast (around the 47-minute mark).
The Trail Blazers have lost their last seven games to fall to 11-18, which is just 11th place in the Western Conference.
General manager Neil Olshey was fired earlier this month for violating the team's code of conduct, but Windhorst noted the new front office is willing to listen on deals for virtually anyone.
Lillard has not had the best season from an individual perspective, averaging 22 points per game while missing time with an abdominal injury. The scoring average would be his lowest since 2014-15, while the 30.5 three-point percentage would be the worst of his career.
The six-time All-Star is still someone the team plans to build around, finding the right ingredients that will turn Portland into a contender.
The Trail Blazers have made the playoffs in each of the last eight years, but they were eliminated in the first round in four of the last five seasons. The best run came in 2019 with a trip to the Western Conference Finals, but the team was swept by the Golden State Warriors.
Portland does have several quality veterans who will likely generate plenty of interest in the trade market, including CJ McCollum. The guard has averaged at least 20 points per game in each of the last six years and would provide an offensive boost to any team in the NBA.
Norman Powell, Jusuf Nurkic, Larry Nance Jr. and Robert Covington could also be interesting pieces for contenders.
The trades could also create more playing time for Anfernee Simons, Nassir Little and other young players to kick off the rebuild.