DAMIAN Lillard bared one particular name at the top of his list of NBA free agents he wished would join him in Portland this off-season during a press conference for his two-day #Dametime Manila visit at the Kerry Gym in Shangri-La The Fort on Tuesday.
“[If] I have to choose only one free agent -- Kevin Durant,” said the Blazers point guard.
Clad in a loose green shirt and shorts with the latest 'PDX Carpet' colorway of his adidas Lillard 2 signature sneakers, Lillard also shared his thoughts about the 2016 NBA Finals with the Golden State Warriors still leading the series 3-2 despite losing Game 5 against the Cleveland Cavaliers on Tuesday.
Lillard said LeBron James and the rest of the Cavaliers “came out and did what they had to do” to force a Game 6, while adding that the Warriors didn't play like the same dominant team without suspended forward Draymond Green.
The two-time Manila visitor also sounded off on where he thinks the game of basketball is heading right now.
“Right now it’s a guard’s game – just look at all the pick and rolls, the transitions and the pace of the game,” said Lillard.
Lillard, however, was non-committal on a possible stint for the US men’s basketball team in the upcoming Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, following the decision of top guards like Steph Curry, Russell Westbrook, and James Harden to remove themselves from consideration to the roster.
One of the late cuts from the 2014 team that won the FIBA World Cup, Lillard said he has “seen all guys dropping out” but claims he has not “thought much about it” and does not like “percentages” when it comes to being selected in response to observations that he's a lock to make Team USA's backcourt for the first time.
The 6-foot-3 guard then turned his focus to promoting his signature shoe with adidas, describing his latest kicks as “stylish, (having) great versatility” that looks good both on and off the court.
“My shoes tell a story. It’s a great overall shoe. They’re comfortable,” he said, adding he had personal inputs in the design and the colorways. He said his favorite is the “Rip City” version.
He welcomes the opportunity to travel and promote not just the brand or his shoes, but also to share his knowledge and skills as well as engage with basketball fans all over the world.
“I see myself more than just a basketball player. This is an opportunity for people to know me as a person,” he said.
As part of the #Dametime Manila visit, Lillard had a meet-and-greet with some lucky fans who won the chance to meet the NBA star in person as well as pairs of his signature kicks. He later went to the Araneta Coliseum where he held a basketball clinic for young players.