Skip Bayless seems to be baffled at the fact that Terry Stotts got fired after Damian Lillard did not show up in the second half.
This 2021 NBA offseason for the Portland TrailBlazers will be a summer of change. After having mediocre success in the Playoffs for 8 straight seasons, the Blazers fired head coach Terry Stotts yesterday after Damian Lillard and the crew lost yet another first round series; this time to a banged up Denver Nuggets team in 6 games.
Damian Lillard had an up and down series in terms of directly impacting winning in these 6 games. Ironically, him scoring 55 points in game led to a loss in Game 5 but him scoring 10 points in Game 4 on 1-10 shooting from the field resulted in a victory as Norman Powell went off for 29 points.
Though Dame did score 28 points in Game 6 against the Nuggets, he did with terrible efficiency and did not show up in the second half one bit after having broken the record for most 3s in a series in the first half.
Terry Stotts lost his job because Damian Lillard didn’t play well?
Skip Bayless took to Undisputed last night to talk about the two teams that got eliminated the night before. In regards to the TrailBlazers, Bayless shockingly handed Damian Lillard and ‘F’ grade for his performance in Game 6 after Sharpe gave him a ‘B’. Skip carried this same energy on Twitter following the show, questioning Terry Stotts’s firing.
So Damian Lillard goes 1-10 in a home Game 4, then in last night’s home closeout, he went 1-9 in the 2nd half including 0-6 from 3. And Terry Stotts pays with his job. Is Lillard really Capt. Clutch? He sure can be Dame Nickel … vs Pels in ’18, GSt in ’19, Lakers last yr.
— Skip Bayless (@RealSkipBayless) June 5, 2021
Terry Stotts being relieved of his job and Damian Lillard having a bad game in Game 6 are not related to each other one bit. Stotts has been known to forsake defense in his schemes multiple times when it is needed the most and also has a major problem with handling minutes.
Though he did get a hold of his minutes issue this season to a certain extent, it does not take away from the fact that the Blazers have had the same offense for over 3 years now. A switch needed to be made in the locker room in terms of the bench boss. 9 years is plenty of time given to a coach to try to figure out new strategies in the Playoffs.
Is Damian Lillard really clutch?
The short answer would be, yes. Damian Lillard is the most clutch athlete in the NBA today and has a case for being one of the most clutch players in league history. He’s had game winners ever since his rookie season and has showed up in the Playoffs more times than he has not.
The Pelicans and Warriors series in 2018 and 2019 saw Dame be trapped as soon as he crossed half-court more than any player that’s ever played this game. In all fairness, Jrue Holiday must be given props for playing stellar defense against Lillard in 2018.
However, when Dame gets trapped and double teamed, it is up to his teammates to step up and carry the offensive load for the time being to ease the pressure off Dame. This never happened as the East Oakland native has never played with an offensive player nearly as potent as him.