‘It’s Taken Him to the Superstar Level’: Warriors’ Draymond Green Explains How Damian Lillard Transformed

Published 04/09/2021, 1:00 PM EDT
Mar 19, 2021; Portland, Oregon, USA; Portland Trail Blazers point guard Damian Lillard (0) shoots the ball during the second half against the Dallas Mavericks at Moda Center. Mandatory Credit: Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports


Portland Trail Blazers superstar Damian Lillard is absolutely balling this season. While the Blazers saw some of their biggest stars miss significant time due to injuries, Lillard has led the team to the sixth spot in the stacked Western Conference.

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The 30-year-old is having one of his best seasons to date. In the 49 games he has played, Lillard is averaging an insane 29.1 points, 7.7 assists and 4.3 rebounds per game.

Draymond Green explains how Damian Lillard transformed into a superstar

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While ‘Dame Dolla‘ had been a solid player since his debut, he has truly unlocked his full potential in the last three seasons, becoming a constant in the MVP conversations and cementing his position as a superstar.

Warriors’ Draymond Green recently made an appearance at the ETCs with Kevin Durant podcast. They’re the 3-time NBA champion broke down how Lillard truly transformed his game to a superstar level in the league.

“When you look at Damian Lillard first, the one difference in Dame’s game now and what’s taken him to another level is he found the ‘in-between’ game. He could always get to the cup, he could always shoot the three.”

Green added, “But you once you got him in-between, it wasn’t so great. Now, you look at Dame, who is an extreme competitor, who is one of the hardest workers I’ve seen. When you talk just putting the work in, like Dame puts his head down, he puts the work in and he gets better every year.”

Jan 30, 2021; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Portland Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard (0) is defended by Chicago Bulls guard Garrett Temple (17) during the first half at United Center. Mandatory Credit: David Banks-USA TODAY Sports

Green added how Lillard working on his mid-range game transformed him into a superstar.“Once he got his in-between game… Now, it’s taken him to the superstar level that he’s at today. And I think that’s that’s a lost art in this game. And I think that takes away from the quality of the game.”

Lillard has truly cemented his position as a superstar in the league. Given how exceptional he is in crunch time, he is probably the most clutch player in the league right now.

Can Lillard lead the Blazers to a deep playoff run?

The Portland Trail Blazers made some questionable moves in this trade deadline. Trading away Gary Trent Jr. and a great backup in Rodney Hood for Norman Powell has affected their depth.

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While Powell has been decent for the Blazers, ever since his inclusion in the team, Lillard has seen a major drop off in his production. Since the trade deadline he is averaging an uncharacteristic 22.7 points, 7.6 assists and 3.7 rebounds per game.

Mar 16, 2021; Portland, Oregon, USA; Portland Trail Blazers point guard Damian Lillard (0) celebrate with teammates after a 125-124 victory over the New Orleans Pelicans at Moda Center. Mandatory Credit: Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports

The Blazers need to figure out how they can use CJ McCollum, Damian Lillard, and Norman Powell in the same starting lineup. While McCollum and Lillard have worked pretty well since their debut, the addition of Powell has certainly raised some concerns.

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Portland have a solid starting lineup and Powell is a great addition too. With the remaining 20 games, the Blazers will be keen on building some team chemistry. If they can get this backcourt trio operating smoothly, the Blazers will cement themselves as a dark horse contender in West.

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Aditya Mohapatra

1003 articles

Aditya Mohapatra is a sports enthusiast who primarily covers the NBA for EssentiallySports. Having graduated in Mass Communication, he has prior experience in writing for ABP News, and has been writing for EssentiallySports since November 2020. This die-hard Los Angeles Lakers fan feels that LeBron James is the best thing to have ever happened to the NBA, and will hold a healthy debate with anyone suggesting otherwise.

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