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Damian Lillard ‘not going to be participating’ if team can’t make playoffs

by Adam Koffler | Trail Blazers Correspondent | Tue, May 26th 11:09am EDT

Portland G Damian Lillard told Yahoo Sports on Tuesday morning that if the Trailblazers don’t have a chance to make the playoffs when the NBA season resumes that he won’t be participating in any of the games. (Chris Haynes on Twitter)

Fantasy Impact:

"If we come back and they're just like, 'We're adding a few games to finish the regular season,' and they're throwing us out there for meaningless games and we don't have a true opportunity to get into the playoffs, I'm going to be with my team because I'm a part of the team. But I'm not going to be participating. I'm telling you that right now.” The Trailblazers currently find themselves 3.5 games back from the Memphis Grizzlies for the eighth and final playoff spot. Lillard went on to tell Yahoo Sports that he’d play if his team had a chance to compete in a play-in style tournament that has been discussed. "If they come back and say it's something like a tournament, play-in style, between the No. 7 and No. 12 seeds, if we're playing for playoff spots, then I think that's perfect,” Lillard said. Portland was also just getting back to full strength when the season got suspended, with Jusuf Nurkic and Zach Collins both getting ready to make their returns from injury. Lillard believes the Trailblazers had a legitimate shot at the playoffs, and from the sound of it, he wouldn’t be thrilled if they didn’t have a fighting chance. He told Yahoo Sports, “if the league says it's only taking playoff teams, then I'm off to a head start in my summer training. I'll be pissed off because I feel like they basically stopped the season and went straight into the playoffs. We're chasing the team with the toughest schedule in the league and we're in ninth place. That would be weak, but it is what it is.”

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