A recent report indicates that the Portland Trail Blazers want the Miami Heat to produce “everything they possibly can” in terms of a trade package for star point guard Damian Lillard, like the Phoenix Suns did when they acquired Kevin Durant.
“What the Blazers want, if they’re dealing with one team, if it is Miami or nothing, they want what the Nets got from the Suns, which is the Suns literally scrounging,” NBA insider Brian Windhorst said. “… They want the Heat to literally scrounge into every nook and cranny and produce everything they possibly can. The Heat don’t feel a need to do that.”
Lillard was selected with the No. 6 overall pick in the 2012 NBA Draft after a four-season stint playing college basketball at Weber State University. He averaged 18.6 points, 4.3 rebounds and 3.5 assists per game during his four seasons with the Wildcats.
Lillard’s best season of college basketball came during his senior season, the 2011-12 season. He established himself as one of the best guards in the nation, as he averaged 24.5 points, 5.0 rebounds, 4.0 assists and 1.5 steals per game across 32 appearances with Weber State (all starts).
Lillard’s contributions translated into a whole lot of success for the 2011-12 iteration of the Wildcats. They finished the season with an excellent 25-7 record but missed out on the NCAA Tournament.
The 33-year-old has played 11 seasons in the NBA, all as a member of the Trail Blazers franchise. He averaged a career-high 32.2 points per game to go along with 4.8 rebounds and 7.3 assists per game in 58 appearances during the 2022-23 regular season (all starts).
Those numbers were good enough for Lillard to earn an All-Star nod — the seventh of his pro career — as well as a spot on the All-NBA Third Team.
Despite Lillard’s fantastic 2022-23 regular season, the Trail Blazers missed out on the playoffs. They finished the regular season with a subpar 33-49 record, the third-worst in the Western Conference, ahead of only the Houston Rockets and San Antonio Spurs.
Time will tell if the Heat are willing to part with plenty of valuable assets in a deal for Lillard. Aside from players like Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo, the Heat have a lot of assets that could be on the table.