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Damian Lillard's 'Blazers in 6' prediction actually isn't a big deal

The context about the question he was asked is important here!

There’s nothing we love more than overconfident players saying ridiculous things about themselves or their team. Like when Tyreke Evans said he’s Giannis Antetokounmpo, only a little bit shorter. Or Stanley Johnson saying he got in LeBron James’ head last season.

On Thursday, it appeared Damian Lillard had predicted his No. 8-seeded Portland Trail Blazers — who snuck into the playoffs in the last week of the season — would knock off the Golden State Warriors, the first team to win 67 games in three straight seasons. Here’s one tweet:

We did it, too!

Yes, Lillard said it.

No, that’s not the entire context, though.

Here’s how the exchange went down.

REPORTER: Blazers in 6 or 7?

LILLARD: [long pause]

LILLARD: Blazers in 6

See? What is Lillard supposed to say there — “actually, Warriors in five!” That would be ridiculous. He could have declined from making a prediction, but professional athletes have to be confident. They’re some of the most competitive people in the world, so of course they think they can win.

Lillard wasn’t trying to distract from his team or give the Warriors bulletin board material. (Do the Warriors REALLY need any of that, anyway?) He was asked a question and he answered it. Nothing wrong with that.

So yes, the point is this: It’s cool Lillard is confident, and he should be, and it shouldn’t be a big deal that he thinks that.

At least Russell Westbrook “likes” the statement!

There’s no context needed for that.