PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — If you are a Blazers fan, you may want to get the tissues out
In a heartfelt letter posted on X and Instagram, Damian Lillard expressed his love for Rip City a day after being traded to the Milwaukee Bucks — and hinted at the possibility of one day returning to Portland.
“This isn’t a goodbye, it’s a see you later. My words have always been from the heart when it comes to you Rip City. I consider you my home as well as many of my family members and that won’t change,” Lillard said.
In the letter, Lillard addressed being disheartened about what had transpired between him and the organization this summer. Lillard asked to be traded on July 1, with his preferred destination being the Miami Heat. However, a new report published Thursday by Chris Haynes of Bleacher Report says that Lillard told Blazers General Manager Joe Cronin that he would like to return to the Blazers if a deal couldn’t be made with the Heat, but Cronin would not oblige.
“I must admit, it does make me sad to see people crossover and appear my opposition in the wake of me asking to be traded without knowing the facts, because I am truly one of you,” Lillard said. “Now I’m older and on my way out the door, a door that I always prayed would lead to retirement — not another team.”
Lillard went on to thank the Blazers ownership, coaching staff, teammates, fans and members of the local media. He ended the letter by sharing how crushed he is that he wasn’t able to win a title in Portland and alluded to the possibility of becoming a Blazer in the future.
“As this chapter of my life ends, I look back and realize how special it was. Even in this moment, I feel sad that we never accomplished what I so badly wanted to. I don’t cry much, but I know my love for you is real because I am sure dropping some tears right now,” he said. “I do believe a day will come where I put a Blazers uniform on again, and hopefully by then I’ll be forgiven for breaking your hearts along with my own.”
Read the full letter here.