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This NBA All-Star Makes An Emotional Return Tonight

The Portland Trail Blazers will welcome an old friend for the first time since a blockbuster trade last fall, which sent Damian Lillard to the Milwaukee Bucks in return for a package including Deandre Ayton, Jrue Holiday, and a 2029 first-round draft pick.

An Emotional Return For An NBA All-Star

Lillard spent 11 seasons in Portland which will make tonight's game an emotion-filled one for the 33-year-old.

“I think it’ll always be like any emotional thing just because I loved living and playing in Portland,” Lillard told The Oregonian. “I never had plans to not play for the Blazers. So, I think because of that being a genuine feeling, I don’t think it will ever leave."

Dame made seven NBA All-Star games and seven All-NBA teams during his time with the Trail Blazers. The team also made the playoffs eight straight seasons between 2013-14 and 2020-21.

Lillard will forever be remembered in Portland, being at the top (or close to the top), in almost all of the franchise's career leaders, including three-point shots made (2,387) and points (19,376), just to name a few.

Bucks VS Trail Blazers Quick Preview

The Bucks have a 32-15 record and sit second in the NBA's Eastern Conference, while Portland has 14 wins and 33 losses this season, good for 14th in the West.

Milwaukee is fairly healthy, with no major players expected to miss tonight's game due to injury. Meanwhile, only Shaedon Sharpe is on the injury report for the Trail Blazers.

Portland is a 10.5-point underdog tonight, with the total set at 236.5 (tied for the highest of the night). Lillard's point total sits at 26.5. He's averaged 25.1 points per game during the 2023-24 season. 

Read more NBA news from Stadium Rant here: NBA News


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