Skip to content

Damian Lillard hopes to see minutes reduction this season

Aug 21, 2013, 11:52 AM EDT

Damian Lillard, Russell Westbrook AP

Damian Lillard racked up a lot of minutes last season — a league high 3,167. He averaged 38.6 minutes per game for a full 82 games. That’s a lot of time on the court.

Understandably, he would like that number to go down, he told Sean Highkin of the USA Today.

“Sometimes when you’re out there (playing) so many minutes, your body can wear down,” Lillard told USA TODAY Sports. “So you’re not always productive at the highest levels because you might be worn down.”

Last season the issue was depth — there wasn’t much point guard support behind Lillard. Eric Maynor was on the roster for 27 games, but that’s it.

This coming year veteran Mo Williams will come off the bench and let Lillard rest, and coach Terry Stotts also needs to find minutes for rookie C.J. McCollum. Some of those are going to come out of Lillard’s pile.

Lillard is just fine with that.

Lillard had an impressive Rookie of the Year campaign on offense, but it will be interesting to see where he improves for his second year as the Blazers see themselves as playoff contenders. If that’s going to happen it is the defensive end were Lillard really needs to step up.

Lillard understands that and plans to work out with fellow Oakland native Gary Payton.

“I feel like defense is a lot about desire,” he said. “You have to want to do it yourself.

“(Payton) was one of the greater point guard defenders ever to play in the NBA, so I’m sure he can show me a few things. But at the end of the day, I’m the one that’s gonna have to make the change and want to be a better defender.”

Latest Posts
  1. Report: Wizards trading for Bucks’ Jared Dudley

    Jul 2, 2015, 7:07 PM EDT

    Jared Dudley, Alexis Ajinca Jared Dudley, Alexis Ajinca

    The Wizards will only give up a future second-rounder.

  2. Report: Miami Heat’s Pat Riley will get dinner to try and woo LaMarcus Aldridge

    Jul 2, 2015, 4:37 PM EDT

    Portland Trail Blazers AP

    It would take an unlikely sign-and-trade to make it happen.

  3. Report: Tristan Thompson and Cavaliers reportedly apart in contract talks

    Jul 2, 2015, 3:11 PM EDT

    2015 NBA Finals - Game Five Getty Images

    Thompson and Cleveland were reportedly nearing $80 million-plus deal yesterday

  4. Tim Duncan says he’s not retiring

    Jul 2, 2015, 2:06 PM EDT

    San Antonio Spurs v Los Angeles Clippers - Game Seven Getty Images

    Now, can the Spurs get LaMarcus Aldridge to complement him?

  5. Report: Pistons signing Aron Baynes away from Spurs for up to $20 million over three years

    Jul 2, 2015, 1:45 PM EDT

    Andre Drummond, Aron Baynes AP

    Baynes will reportedly get three-year deal with player option

  6. Report: Pacers agree to four-year, $44 million contract with Monta Ellis

    Jul 2, 2015, 1:23 PM EDT

    Donald Sloan, Monta Ellis AP

    Indiana shouldn’t feel good about this, even if it was their best option at this point

  7. Report: David West interested in Warriors and Spurs

    Jul 2, 2015, 11:00 AM EDT

    Draymond Green, David West AP

    Former Pacers forward said he opted out to win a title

  8. Kings set sights on at least one of Rajon Rondo, Monta Ellis, Wes Matthews

    Jul 2, 2015, 10:22 AM EDT

    Rajon Rondo AP

    The Kings are going to have to overpay to get players to come to the Kings right now.

Top 10 NBA Player Searches
  1. L. Aldridge (5250)
  2. D. Wade (4776)
  3. L. James (3775)
  4. J. Embiid (3714)
  5. G. Monroe (3243)
  1. K. Bryant (3226)
  2. T. Harris (3156)
  3. K. Love (3121)
  4. J. Butler (2903)
  5. D. Jordan (2548)