The Portland Trail Blazers stated that they wouldn’t trade Damian Lillard unless they got an offer they couldn’t refuse, and they haven’t changed that stance just yet.
The Miami Heat have reportedly reached out multiple times with several offers, but GM Joe Cronin has been unfazed by every single one of them.
Nonetheless, the fact that Lillard and his camp put the word out there that he only wants to play for the Heat and would be unhappy anywhere else has pretty much hampered his actual trade value.
That’s why Zach Lowe of ESPN believes that not even the Heat have made their best offer for him, as they don’t feel like it will be necessary because the Blazers won’t get any other offer for his services (via Dru).
“I don’t think Miami’s put out their best offer yet b/c they don’t think they have to b/c the rest of the league is like, if we trade for him is he going to be unhappy here. We aren’t going to turn into a weigh station for Dame until he gets to where he wants to go”—@ZachLowe_NBA pic.twitter.com/v0TGACWjNS
— Dru (@dru_star) September 19, 2023
This is precisely what NBA Commissioner Adam Silver is trying to prevent.
Most NBA fans would love to see Lillard playing for a contender, but small market teams need to get fair value in return for their assets.
He still has four years left in his very lucrative contract, so why on Earth should he get to handpick his trade destination?
The Blazers have every right to demand as much as they want for him, and the Heat should have no choice but to decide whether they’re willing to meet that asking price or not.
Trading Lillard to the Heat for spare parts or a subpar return would set a dangerous precedent, but that’s just the way the agent and player-driven NBA works.NEXT: Damian Lillard Says He's The Best Point Guard In The NBA