The Portland Trail Blazers are playing the waiting game with Damian Lillard.
They’re reportedly willing to drag his trade request all the way into the season, and reports state that he would attend training camp, albeit unhappy.
The Miami Heat, on the other hand, are reportedly ‘daring’ the Blazers to get a better offer for Lillard, knowing that another team will not join the race for his services because everybody knows that he wants to be in Miami.
That might not be the case anymore, as Matt Moore of Action Network reported that Masai Ujiri and the Toronto Raptors could look to win his sweepstakes as well (via Locked On NBA Podcast and NBA Central).
The Raptors have shown interest in Damian Lillard, per @HPbasketball
“That's the thing nobody's really saying, but everyone around the league kinda knows that the Raptors are amongst the teams."
— NBACentral (@TheDunkCentral) September 19, 2023
The Raptors have been hesitant to break their core up and hit the drawing board again, and it seems like Uriji is reluctant to tank.
They would have to give significant assets up, but he could look to make a postseason push with OG Anunoby and Pascal Siakam, even if that means losing Scottie Barnes.
Or perhaps he could look to trade Siakam and/or Anunoby to pair Lillard with Barnes, which would make more sense for their future but not so much to pursue a championship right away.
Whatever the case, it seems like Pat Riley and the Miami Heat may not be alone in their pursuit of Lillard.
Miami may have to one-up their current offer if they want to make sure to have Lillard on their team by the start of next season.NEXT: Scottie Barnes Talks His Expectations For The Raptors