Even though he has played at the highest level this 2020-21 NBA season, Damian Lillard isn’t convinced that his Portland Trail Blazers have what it takes to win the NBA title this year. The All-Star point guard has been on a tear all season long, but he’s well aware that the Blazers need more if they want to aspire to win the championship.
The postseason is getting closer every week, and the Blazers need to step up if they want to compete in a Western Conference that features big teams like the Los Angeles Lakers, Los Angeles Clippers, Utah Jazz, Phoenix Suns and Denver Nuggets. Dame stated that his team hasn’t performed well when put against big rivals, and that must change if they want to contend this season, via NBC Sports:
“When we play against the top-level teams, we don’t play well. We get put away.
“At Phoenix, we got put away. Tonight, we got put away. At Denver, we got put away. Milwaukee at home, we got put away. Clippers, got put away. I mean, you know, it’s not like a small sample size.”
The Blazers currently rank sixth in the West, one spot above the teams that would participate in the play-in tournament before the postseason officially starts. They have a 30-21 record at this moment, but this isn’t good enough for their aspirations. They had CJ McCollum and Jusuf Nurkic back, but that hasn’t improved their level. Instead, they seem to play worse than when these two were sidelined.
This team reached the WCF two seasons ago, and Lillard wants to do that again. However, the Blazers will need to step up to keep their chances alive.