Damian Lillard has shown love to the places he’s called home.
He spent four years as a member of the Weber State Wildcats and has always been a man of loyalty who doesn’t forget his roots. He has returned to Weber State to play in alumni games. He even wore a Weber State jersey in the 3-point contest during the 2023 NBA All-Star weekend, which was held in Salt Lake City. He won, too.
He constantly mentions the impact of Ogden and Oakland, where he was born, and Portland, Ore. — the only NBA city he’s called home.
On Wednesday, Lillard did get traded, but to the Milwaukee Bucks in a three-team deal, per multiple reports. And while Lillard has been loyal — some would say to a fault — to the Blazers for so long, it appears he harbors some frustrations for his former team.
Lillard, who raps under the name Dame D.O.L.L.A., releases music regularly. On Wednesday, just hours after the trade was reported and being talked about and analyzed all over the place, he released a new song called “Farewell.”
The last several lines of the song are reminiscent of a diss track:
“I’ll continue leaving trails, but won’t be for the Blazers.
“To the fans, man I love you, it’s unconditional. Reasons for me leaving the city’s nothing typical.
“So it’s imperative not to believe the narrative. Just know that what I left is better than what I inherited.
“I leave at peace ‘cause I know in the end that this is business. Hope you remember all the things you got to see and witness.
“In the future, man, I hope we greet with hugs and kisses. But you should know that they the ones who chose another mission.
During Lillard’s time playing for the Portland Trail Blazers, he repeatedly said he preferred to build his legacy with one team — that he wanted to build a title contender in Portland, that he wasn’t the type to jump ship and ring-chase with other stars.
That is, until this summer when he asked to be traded, and indicated his only preferred destination was to join the Miami Heat. The situation reportedly prompted a memo from the league to all 30 NBA teams.
In the end, the Bucks won the Lillard lottery.
And the Blazers will hear about it in the All-Star’s farewell.