Apr 14, 2014, 9:58 AM EDT
Portland’s resurgence from lousy to the playoffs has, not coincidentally, coincided with Lillard’s development. Lillard has taken the next step, going from Rookie of the Year to one of the NBA’s best guards, and taken the Trail Blazers with him.
But that doesn’t make Lillard perfect.
Is there a perception he’s treated as if he is?
But there is some concern inside the locker room that Lillard is not held to the same accountabilities that other players are. In other words, his mistakes are often either overlooked, or not held to the same examination as others.
That’s not to say there is raging discontent among the ranks when it comes to Lillard. From what I gather, he is respected deeply for his talent, his work ethic and his efforts at becoming a leader.
Announcement: Pro Basketball Talk’s partner FanDuel is hosting a one-day $45,000 Fantasy Basketball league for Monday’s games. It’s $25 to join and first prize is $7,000. Starts at 7pm ET on Monday. Here’s the FanDuel link.
A lot of times when you’re writing stuff, you know it, you just can’t reveal who it’s coming from.
If the Portland players respect Lillard’s work ethic and leadership – as they probably should considering how difficult it is to rise from Weber State to NBA All-Star – this sounds like an issue with Terry Stotts and/or Neil Olshey.
Whether Lillard is actually treated differently or some of his teammates just perceive that he is, the coach and/or general manager must address it. Everything is copacetic in Portland because the Trail Blazers are winning, but these are the kind of issues that get blown up during losing patches. See the Pacers.
This doesn’t sound like a problem now, but the Trail Blazers should take steps to avoid it becoming one.
- Report: Kevin Durant considering Knicks, being recruited by Carmelo Anthony 42
- Markieff Morris: “My future will not be in Phoenix” 33
- Shaq tells Suzy Shuster he, Kobe Bryant could have tied Jordan’s six titles 34
- Dwight Howard tried to take loaded gun through airport security, will not face charges 52
- Will Miami make a run at Kevin Durant? 17
- Report: Veteran forward Chuck Hayes agrees to deal with Clippers 7
- Report: Lakers to sign Brazilian, FC Barcelona point guard Marcelo Huertas to one-year deal 10
- Shaq to Kobe on podcast: “I just want people to know that I don’t hate you” 18