Report: Lillard not making demands regarding Trail Blazers' coaching search
Portland Trail Blazers star Damian Lillard will not make demands regarding the team's next head coach and will communicate with the front office throughout the search, a source told The Athletic's Sam Amick.
Kidd, who was reportedly one of Portland's top targets early on, suddenly withdrew his name from consideration for the opening on Sunday. The former Brooklyn Nets and Milwaukee Bucks head coach was uncomfortable with pursuing the role following Lillard's candid request.
Lillard, 30, has also voiced support for hiring Los Angeles Clippers assistant Chauncey Billups, according to The Athletic's Jason Quick and Shams Charania. Billups, who joined Tyronn Lue's staff ahead of the 2020-21 season, has yet to work as a head coach in the NBA.
Former New York Knicks and Houston Rockets head coach and current broadcaster Jeff Van Gundy is reportedly among the list of candidates for the Trail Blazers' coaching vacancy, as are Nets assistant Mike D'Antoni and Michigan coach Juwan Howard.
Trail Blazers president Neil Olshey said Monday that the front office will solicit Lillard's input on their hire.
"I've always encouraged participation from our players wherever I've been because they bring a critical lens to any process involving players or coaches that we don't necessarily have," he said, according to NBC Sports' Lindsey Wisniewski.
"Obviously, Dame's opinion is very important ... We very rarely make a big free-agent decision, very rarely make a trade without his participation and his insight, and that'll be the same thing."
Lillard has only played under Stotts throughout his nine-year career in Portland. He's averaged 24.7 points, 6.6 assist, 4.2 rebounds, one steal, and shot 37.5% from three in that span while making eight postseason trips.
The six-time All-Star is under contract with the Trail Blazers through the 2024-25 season after inking a four-year, super-max extension in 2019.