Fans of the Portland Trail Blazers can breathe a little more easily through at least the weekend.
"I woke up to those reports," Lillard explained, per Michael Kaskey-Blomain of CBS Sports. "You know a lot of people reaching out to me. But it's not true. I'll start off the rip and say it's not true. I said the last time I spoke to you guys that a lot of things are being said and it hasn't come from me. Number one, it's not true. And secondly, I'll also say that I haven't made any firm decision on what my future will be. So there's really no need for anybody else to speak for me or report this or report that."
According to Marc J. Spears of The Undefeated, Lillard added he "expects" to be playing for Portland at the start of the 2021-22 NBA season.
While Lillard didn't throw new coach Chauncey Billups under the figurative bus, he heavily suggested Portland's roster is not capable of winning a championship as it exists today:
Damian Lillard on if the Portland Trail Blazers roster today are championship contenders: pic.twitter.com/suGx128hD6— Rob Perez (@WorldWideWob) July 16, 2021
Earlier in the day, Lillard was linked with the New York Knicks and Miami Heat in trade rumors. For what it's worth, ESPN's Brian Windhorst reported in late June the 31-year-old hadn't seriously considered demanding a trade as of that time.
Lillard's supermax extension kicks in only at the start of the upcoming campaign, and that could make it difficult for Portland to trade him before next summer at the earliest.