Damian Lillard, the star point guard of the Portland Trail Blazers, has expressed his desire for a rule change in the NBA that would mandate every team to have at least two experienced veterans, similar to Udonis Haslem of the Miami Heat.
Lillard believes that having seasoned players on every roster would provide valuable mentorship and guidance to the younger generation of athletes entering the league.
In a recent interview on The Last Stand, Lillard shared his thoughts on the matter, stating, “If I was the commissioner, it would be mandatory to have two vets on the team. I’m talking about real vets like how Miami has Udonis Haslem. He can play if they need him to play, but somebody that’s been around. Somebody that guys have to respect. Almost like a father figure on the team because guys are coming into the league so young, and they have all this money.”
Lillard’s proposal stems from his concern about the challenges faced by young players who enter the NBA with limited life experience and suddenly find themselves thrust into the spotlight.
He believes that the presence of veteran players can provide a stabilizing influence and help guide these young athletes through the various challenges they may encounter off the court.
Lillard went on to explain, “It’s almost like they get everything, and it’s a dream come true, but they’re exposed to a lot of things that can put you in a world of trouble.”
Meanwhile, trade rumors surrounding Lillard continue to circulate. Although Lillard has not explicitly requested a trade, speculation about his future with the Trail Blazers remains a hot topic. Several teams, including the Miami Heat, Brooklyn Nets, Boston Celtics, and New York Knicks, have been mentioned as potential destinations for the star guard.
Whether or not Lillard’s vision becomes a reality, it is clear that his concern for the well-being and development of young players is genuine. As the NBA continues to evolve, the league and its players will undoubtedly find ways to address the challenges faced by rookies and provide them with the necessary tools for success on and off the court.
Watch the full interview below: