Damian Lillard’s extension will start with the 2016-17 season. (Getty Images)
As a first-round pick in the 2012 NBA draft, Lillard was eligible to negotiate a contract extension until Oct. 31. The 2013 NBA Rookie of the Year can make the deal official on July 9 when NBA’s moratorium on player business is lifted. The exact figures of Lillard’s extension will depend on the amount of the NBA salary cap next season.
Lillard went from Weber State to the sixth overall selection in the 2012 draft. The Oakland, Calif., native has career per-game averages of 21 points, 6.1 assists and one steal. Lillard will become the cornerstone of the Blazers if All-Star forward LaMarcus Aldridge signs elsewhere as a free agent.
“I’m just thankful, man,” Lillard told Yahoo Sports. “I play the game out of love, and it’s inspiring to be rewarded for doing things the right way and being a high-character person. It’s also comforting knowing that none of what I’ve accomplished has been handed to me.”