Damian Lillard is an American professional basketball player who plays for the Portland Trail Blazers. He is currently headed to the Milwaukee Bucks, the team announced Wednesday night. He was first drafted sixth overall by the Blazers in 2012. His first NBA contract, amounting to $13 million, instantly made him a millionaire.
He quickly established himself in the NBA as one of the best in contemporary times, winning the NBA Rookie of the Year Award that year in 2012. Since then, he has gone on to receive six NBA All-Star selections over the course of his career. He is one of only two Blazers players to have achieved this feat.
On June 30, 2019, he signed a four-year, $176 million contract. He also signed a two-year contract extension with the Blazers, amounting to $122 million. Reports described the deal as one of the richest in NBA history. At the time, he had already made $191 million in career earnings and it was reported that should he finish his extension, he would make half a billion in the NBA.
Forbes recently named him one of the world’s highest-paid athletes with earnings of $58.6 million. According to the business magazine, $42.6 million of this figure comes from his salary/winnings while $16 million comes from endorsements. Some of his endorsement deals include Adidas, AT&T, Gatorade, Moda Health, Oakley, Spalding, Tissot, and Toyota.
Lillard is also a musician. He has released four studio albums under his rap name, Dame D.O.L.L.A. His track “Money Ball” was featured on the “NBA 2K20” soundtrack. Also, he’s a global ambassador for the Special Olympics.
Lillard was born on July 15, 1990, in Oakland, California. His basketball talent was discovered during his high school days in San Lorenzo, California. To get more playing time, he transferred to a different high school in Alameda. He then transferred to another school when this school left him on the bench.
He would establish himself as a strong player in his new school, averaging almost 20 points per game. In his senior year, this had risen to 22.4 points per game.
After high school, he got a number of college offers but he eventually got a scholarship to play for Weber State in Utah. Despite a foot injury that put him on the sidelines for several months, he ended his college career as a finalist for the Bob Cousy Award. He also went straight for the 2012 NBA draft, after skipping his senior year.