Lillard, 33, a well-known scorer who excels from long distance, gives the Bucks outstanding offensive abilities. He is a top playmaker and scorer in the NBA.
He equaled a career-high in shooting percentage (46.3%) and averaged career-highs in points (32.2) and rebounds (4.8) last season. He had 7.3 assists per game and had a 37.1% 3-point shooting percentage.
Who is Damian Lillard
His All-Star appearances and seven All-NBA selections include being named to the third team in 2022–2023. At the beginning of the 2021–22 season, he was likewise listed as one of the top 75 players in the league.
Lillard frequently demonstrated his allegiance via words and deeds but also desired to contend for a championship. During Lillard’s 11 seasons with the team, the Blazers made the playoffs eight times while only making it to the Western Conference Finals once (in 2019).
Lillard’s only head coach during his NBA career, Terry Stotts, was sacked by the Blazers in June 2021. Billups, who has helped Portland to a combined 60-104 record over the past two seasons, took his spot in Portland.
Given the emphasis on youth and Portland’s failure to make the playoffs in 2022 and 2023, Lillard looked for a new team.
Lillard’s contract has four years and $216.2 million still to run, and in the last year of the agreement, 2026–2027, he will receive $63.2 million.
Is Damian Lillard going to the Bucks?
An individual knowledgeable of the transaction tells USA TODAY Sports that the Blazers and All-NBA guard Damian Lillard have agreed to trade each other to the Bucks in a three-team transaction that includes the Phoenix Suns.
The individual asked to remain anonymous since he was not permitted to discuss the exchange until it was made public.
Jrue Holiday, Deandre Ayton, Toumani Camara, a first-round pick by the Bucks in 2029, and the right to trade a future pick with Milwaukee were all included in the deal for Portland. Jusuf Nurkic, Nassir Little, Keon Johnson, and Grayson Allen would go to Phoenix.
The impact of this trade
Lillard and the Blazers would experience the end of one era and the start of a new one with the trade.
Lillard had anticipated the Blazers would assemble a championship-caliber team around him by adding veterans.
Still, after the team selected Scoot Henderson with the third overall pick in the June draft and failed to make the other moves Lillard had hoped for, Lillard asked for a trade immediately after the start of the free-agent period on June 30.
Why did the Blazers delay the deal?
Due to Lillard’s desire to join the Miami Heat and the Blazers’ pursuit of the best deal for their reconstruction under general manager Joe Cronin and head coach Chauncey Billups, a deal between the two teams took some time to complete.
Lillard and his agent met with Cronin on June 26 to review the team’s strategy.
Following that, Portland moved fast to re-sign forward Jerami Grant, a favorite of Lillard’s, to a five-year deal for up to $160 million when NBA free agency began on Friday.
However, the Blazers chose not to pursue additional well-known players through trades or free agency.