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The Poortland Trailblazers have not had the best luck in the NBA Draft in recent years, but it looks like things are starting to look up in PDX! The Blazers took Damian Lillard aka the Omen, aka the Dame, aka the 6’3 PG out of Weber State, with their 6th overall pick in the draft and expectations couldn’t be higher for the young guard. In 32 games with Weber St. Wildcats last season, Lillard filled the stat sheet with 24.5 PPG,  5.0 RPG, 4.0 APG and 1.5 steals per game.  Yes, Dame does it all folks. Are you excited yet? He also sank 2.9 3-pointers per game, shot a 46.7 FG% and averaged just under 35 minutes per game. How about now? Damian should take the place of Ray Felton as the Blazer new starting point guard and has been named as a dark horse in the ROY race (Brow better watch his back!). He has drawn comparisons to Chris Paul and George Hill. Yes, THE George Hill.He is also tasked with the challenge of winning Blazers’ fans hearts back from Brandon Roy, who broke them, stole their hearts, shipped those hearts to Minnesota and packed them under 4 feet of ice.

The NBA Summer League experts  (or “SLexperts”) awarded the honors of “biggest winner in Las Vegas” (“I like to call it Lost Wages!”)  not to Nick Papageorgio, but to Damian Lillard. Much like Mr. Papageorgio, Lillard does not require corrective lenses, but unlike Nick P. Damian absolutely dominated the Summer League in July, or should I say “dame-inated?” Whichever you choose, in four summer league games Lillard put up drool worthy fantasy stats, 26.5 PPG, 4.0 RPG and 5.3 APG, including a 31 point, 7-assist performance July 19. He also hit 11 3’s (.379%) in 4 games! Oh hello there, young point guard, if you’re not doing anything this November, I thought maybe possibly perhaps you’d like to be on my fantasy basketball team? We can name them “Damien’s Omen,” and I’ll put a pic of you dunking for the team logo? Say what you will about the Summer League, these stats should not be ignored. Lillard is a player who can score in bunches, something Portland has lacked over the past few seasons, and he could also be the perfect complement to Blazers big man LaMarcus Aldridge. LaMarcus could see a boost or dip in production based on how well Lillard plays. Let’s hope for Dame’s sake its the former, as Aldridge is a big scary man. All these things considered, Damian Lillard could be a real steal on draft day. It’s early, but most boards are projecting him as a 9th-12th round pick. I imagine this projection may go up a bit as the season approaches and the hype train builds, but if you can manage to grab Damian in one of those rounds it could pay off huge. The Blazers are handing Lillard the reigns to the starting point guard position in Portland with high hopes and if you’re smart you’d consider doing the same with your fantasy team on draft day.

Projections: .408/.882/1.5 3pt/18.9 pts/3.7 rbd/5.9 ast/1.1 stl/0.1 blk/3.4 tov

  1. Shawn says:
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    LMA or Dirk this season?
    my 4 keepers are LBJ/Dirk/Bynum/Wall
    Head to head 9 cats, thanks
    good read….
    lillard will be a great late pick from those in the know

    • Dan Pants

      Blairtch says:
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      @Shawn, Oh good one, but I love me some Dirkish. He’s got some durability issues that comes with his age but when he’s on he contributes across all categories. That said, LMA is a beast too and I don’t think you can go wrong either way. I’d have both in my top 20, but prob Dirk a bit higher becasue of the 3s, FG%, FT% he will provide.

  2. Fenris-77 says:
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    I think Lillard might shoot better than .408. His shooting got better and better over his NCAA career, and the wide open spaces of the NBA should allow him some elbow to get his shot off. That and he won’t be double or triple teamed on every single possession like he was at Weber State. When he has Matthews, Batum and Aldridge to draw some defensive attention I think his shooting will really shine. I can see him shooting something closer to .450 without having to squint too hard.

    I think I’d be happy projecting him for more like 2+ 3’s per contest too. You’re going to have to like the hype if you want a slice on draft day though since I’ve seen him going in the early 6th in a couple of mocks peopled by respectable fantasy types. I think the hype train has probably already left the station.

    • Dan Pants

      Blairtch says:
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      @Fenris-77, You’re right. I’m pretty high on Lillard but I dialed back the numbers quite a bit for the sake of not being too optimistic. The 6th round is pretty early, but I’m buying. This kid’s gonna be a STAR! Ha cha cha!

  3. Moe says:
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    Hey guys
    I’m really debating something and I thought I would ask you first before I pull the trigger..

    H2D keeper League(3) 9 cat , 12 teams.
    I have Lbj/Monta Ellis/AlHorf

    The team I’m looking to trade with has
    Dwill/Westbrook/Klove AND bynum

    He says klove is untouchable but will trade any other combination, I hate giving him LOVE and james but if it helps me a lot maybe I can swing a upset this season over him, thing is, I like horf/ellis I think there both very underrated players… yet I was thinking about asking for Dwill/Westbrook… for James.. keep Horf as my third and draft a great SF( hopefully batum) what are your thoughts? maybe dwill/bynum( im not 100% sold on bynum as of right now though, skill is there but… seems like a bonehead… whatcha think guys? thanks.

    • Tony says:
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      @Moe, don’t trade the best player in the NBA….. the value is close, i’m not sure I could part with a player thats a triple double threat every single night. You’d be very guard heavy then too. I defly wouldn’t do it for anything including Bynum, wayyyyy too risky of a player.

  4. Moe says:
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    good call… if he offers me Klove and Dwill I might really consider it.( those are my two fav players) yet maybe I should still put that a side, bc james is king……

    also, Im not sure he would do this but I might bring up bynum/Dwill/Westbrook for LBJ and Hord/ellis…
    thx a lot

    • Dan Pants

      Blairtch says:
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      @Moe, Yeah I’d hold onto LBJ unless he really knocks your socks off with an offer. Bynum/Dwill/Westbrook sure is nice but I think I’d still want the side Bron is on. However, Love and Williams I’d have to seriously consider too…

  5. Nino says:
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    who would you rather have in a keeper league? Lillard,Favors or Faried. I own Lillard. The other guy is willing to trade either one for Lillard straight up.

    • Dan Pants

      Blairtch says:
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      @Nino, I’d want Lillard but Favors is a close second

  6. Fenris-77 says:
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    I’d keep Lillard there and see how he does this year. That’s because I’m a fan though. Favours is a great keeper piece, as is Faried, and I wouldn’t blame anyone for trading Lillard for either guy.

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