Damian Lillard

Portland Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard will miss the remainder of the 2021-22 NBA season while he recovers from abdominal surgery, the team announced Monday.

The Trail Blazers said Lillard “has progressed well through the reconditioning phase of his rehab protocol” and “met several key performance benchmarks to date and will continue end-stage rehab over the next few weeks.”

At 26-44, the Trail Blazers are 12th in the Western Conference and all-but eliminated from playoff contention.

Portland has reached the playoffs in each of the past eight NBA seasons with Lillard in the lineup, reaching the 2019 Western Conference finals before losing to Golden State.

The 31-year-old backcourt star averaged 24.0 points, 7.3 assists and 4.1 rebounds a game over 29 appearances for Portland this season.

It’s the fewest games Lillard has ever played in an NBA campaign and his fewest average points in seven years.

Lillard was originally expected to make a return in March but interim Trail Blazers general manager Joe Cronin said last month he likely would not return until next season.

Source: Manila Bulletin (https://mb.com.ph/2022/03/22/blazers-say-lillard-will-miss-remainder-of-season/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=blazers-say-lillard-will-miss-remainder-of-season)