Between the Steph Curry’s, Lebron James’ and Kevin Durant’s on the NBA world there is another superstar out in the Western Conference that no one is talking about.
He’s averaging 25 points a game, 8 of his last 9 games he has had at least 30 points against some of the best teams in the NBA. He also has had his two best scoring games of the year, 51 and 40 points, against the best team in the league possibly history in the Warriors.
And yet this player was not elected to a All-Star game in each of the last two seasons. This players name? Damian Lillard. Lillard is the most exciting and fun player in the NBA, yet he isn’t talked about because he plays on the Portland Trail Blazers. Millard isn’t your new age guard, he doesn’t shoot 12 3’s a game but he still is one of the most clutch players in the league. Here is just one example:
Although he isn’t a premier defender like Kawhi Leonard or even a above average one like Curry or Klay Thompson. He also doesn’t have the supporting cast of superstars and above average players like the Warriors do. Lillard has C.J McCollum, arguably top 15 Shooting Guard in the association, and a bunch of once highly thought of prospects that never panned out like they were supposed to.
Lillard is carrying his team right now, he has led the team to a 33-28 record and a current 7 seed, when most “experts” projected them to have a top 10 lottery selection. Lillard is only 200 points away from his average points in a season with about 20 games to go. Lillard in his 51 point game out 3-point shot Curry in the game 9-12 compared to 7-13 for Curry.
Lillard is the most over looked and under rated guard in the NBA today, if he was on any consistent contender with those numbers he would be a starter every year in the game. Although he was in the All-Star game as a injury replacement his first two years of his career. The last point i want to make is this screenshot from Basketball Reference (http://www.basketball-reference.com/players/l/lillada01.html)
Lillard has more win shares in the first 3 years than both Kyrie Irving and Klay Thompson both regarded as “superstars” in the NBA. Lillard should be in that conversation as one of the best but yet he isn’t.