Potential Knicks target Damian Lillard could request Trail Blazers trade due to two factors: report

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Damian Lillard Knicks
Damian Lillard Knicks

Two factors could push potential Knicks target and Trail Blazers star Damian Lillard out of Portland, according to a report Sunday by Yahoo Sports' Chris Haynes.

Backlash from the Trail Blazers' process to hire new head coach Chauncey Billups -- an anticipated decision Haynes said that Lillard played no part in -- and his "concerns on whether a championship contender can be built" may impact whether or not he demands a trade, per the report.

Lillard, who turns 31 on July 15, is a six-time All-Star point guard through nine NBA seasons -- all with Portland.

Starting all 682 regular-season games he has logged from 2012-21, Lillard's career averages include 24.7 points and 6.6 assists in 36.3 minutes.

As a ninth-year pro in 2020-21, Lillard scored 28.8 points per game -- just shy of his single-season career-high 30 from the previous year -- but the sixth-seeded Trail Blazers suffered a six-game loss to the Denver Nuggets in the Western Conference's first round.

In a report June 18 with sources on how the Knicks may approach the 2021 NBA Draft, SNY's Ian Begley mentioned Lillard as a potential piece who New York would need to unload picks for.