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Damian Lillard says he wouldn’t join superteam: “I might have too much pride for that”

Damian Lillard

Portland Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard (0) poses for a photograph during NBA basketball media day in Portland, Ore., Monday, Sept. 26, 2016. (AP Photo/Steve Dykes)


Kevin Durant has become one of the NBA’s polarizing players.

Some players — and pretty much everyone in the Bay Area — support not only his right to choose to play with the Warriors, but they also note that if the goal is to win titles he put himself in the best position to do that (and still get paid).

Most fans and some players say they don’t like the formation of superteams.

Put Damian Lillard in the latter group. Here is what the Portland guard he said on SiriusXM NBA Radio Monday.

“If somebody wants to go join people and do that, it’s not against the rules. They can do it. It’s just more pressure to win when you do it. Some people say, ‘Oh, they had to do that to win it,’ but we play the game to win it. So when people do it, that’s their decision. I wouldn’t do it. That’s just not who I am.

“I might have too much pride for that or be too much of a competitor where I couldn’t bring myself to do it, but it also makes it more fun. You get to take a monster down and that’s always fun.”

I’m always a little skeptical of players who were not in KD’s shoes saying they wouldn’t make his choice. No doubt Lillard believes he would not make the same decision, maybe he wouldn’t, but for him the question is moot — with his new contract kicking in he will be in Portland for years to come.

One thing Lillard said is how I think a lot of teams are viewing the Warriors — they want to slay Goliath. NBA players are by their natures very competitive, and if you put a mountain in front of them and they want to climb it. I’m not sure any teams outside Cleveland and San Antonio have a chance in the playoffs, but the target is on the Warriors’ backs. Even bigger than before.