Damian Lillard is one of the NBA’s good guys. He never dismisses a fan who wants an autograph, and he never turns down a reporter for an interview — even after a horrendous loss.
The 26-year-old NBA All-Star from the Portland Trailblazer is a great example of what it means to be a professional on and off the court.
Now toss in the fact that Lillard leads the charge when it comes to making sure the team’s support staff is supported themselves.
According to CSNNW.com, the Trailblazers gave up their $223,864 playoff bonus, which is normally given to the players, to the team’s trainers, massage therapists, and other personnel who make the Blazers run like a well-oiled machine.
The lump sum was split among 25 people within the organization as a ‘thank you’ from players.
“We divide our playoff shares to give to the people who we work so closely with because they spend as much time away from their families as we do, and they are just about as invested as we are,’’ Lillard said after the season. “They also do as much as possible to make our lives easier, even if it makes theirs more difficult – all while making far less. So it’s a further way of showing appreciation beyond a thank your or a handshake.’’ (CSNNW.com)
After all, it takes a village to “raise” a successful NBA team.