The Trail Blazers point guard spoke prior to Monday's game against the Lakers about some of the large winning margins so far this season, and why he thinks the quick turnaround & lack of fans could be playing a part.
DAMIAN LILLARD: I don't think nobody has said, but I would say it probably has something to do with the environment that we're playing in. Going into the bubble, we knew we wouldn't have fans, but I think the NBA did a great job of just setting the stage, it was screens, it was virtual fans, we had media in a building that was like personnel from each team, you had workers. It was people there, you know what I'm saying? And it was a more intimate environment where it wasn't as big of arena.
So I thought it was set up perfect for us to be able to come in and still come in to the games and it not look like practice, you know? It felt like a game. And I think now being in these big arenas, no fans, quick turnaround from last season, I think you're going to have some people who are like still getting their mind into the season. You're going to have some people who are looking around like, man, we've got to create our own energy. There's really no true energy in a building, aside from your pride and competitive nature, you know? The passion and that fan energy is missing.
So I think that's a reason for it. If you get down by 17 or 18 in some of these games, you can see it where in the past you hit a couple of shots, the crowd goes wild. Other team calls a timeout, a chant get's going. There is energy in the building. And now, it's like you get down 18 to 20, only thing you can hear is the other team. There's no energy being pumped into the opposing team. So I think that charge of teams getting back into games isn't the same. And that's why once the team is down, they pretty much seem like they've done so far this year. And I think that's also why you're seeing more teams getting down because it's a battle. It's not just a battle of physically playing, it's a battle of getting into the game.