NBA Rumors: Damian Lillard is not going to hold out if not traded

Damian Lillard (Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports)
Damian Lillard (Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports) /

NBA Rumors: Damian Lillard is not going to hold out if not trading by the start of training camp. That opens the door to a possible return to Portland.

Ever since it was reported that Damian Lillard was requesting a trade away from the Portland Trail Blazers (and just to the Miami Heat), the natural next question was how far he was willing to go to force a deal. It seems that we have his answer. He’s willing to apply pressure through his camp but he draws the line when it comes to anything else, it seems.

According to a recent report, the expectation is that Lillard isn’t going to hold out if he isn’t traded when training camps open. Considering everything we know about Lillard, this is the least surprising. But if this is indeed true, this has to be considered a huge win for the Blazers and music to their ears.

 The Portland Trail Blazers are now in the driver’s seat

If Lillard isn’t going to push the issue anymore, then what’s the rush for the Blazers? There isn’t. If Portland doesn’t care about the return or making Lillard happy and if this has just become a game of pride for them, they could just hold on to Lillard until they feel differently.

For all this organization’s talk about doing right by Lillard, they haven’t done anything this offseason to suggest that. The fact that they won’t even negotiate with the Heat says all you need to know about this situation – and it’s that their pride has gotten in the way of not only doing right by Lillard but also doing their jobs.

The general manager’s job is to do the best under different circumstances; that’s what the best always do. For better or worse, if Blazers’ general manager is unwilling to engage the Heat in potential trade conversations because he’s upset, caught off guard, or angry at the lack of trade market (whether Lillard’s camp had a hand in that or not), is irrelevant.

And the fact that Lillard still plans on reporting to training camp only helps his cause. In the end, he could win. In the end, he could refuse to trade Lillard because he’s mad at the potential underwhelming return but still win the public relations battle because the fan base will be happy with Lillard’s return.

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The next few weeks should prove to be interesting. And at this point, if Miami doesn’t push hard for a deal, it’s difficult to envision one happening at all.