Over a week ago, the six-time All-Star point guard revealed that he'd agitated an ongoing lower abdominal tendinopathy injury during a loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers. Since then, he's taken the court for the Blazers in five straight contests.
On Saturday, the team announced Lillard's first missed game of the season.
Possibly due to this nagging injury, Lillard has gotten off to a slow start in the 2021-22 season. Through the first 13 games of the year, the dynamic PG is averaging 20.0 point per game on 38.0% shooting from the field -- the worst shooting percentage of his 10-year NBA career.
Despite his injury issues, the Trail Blazers have asked quite a bit from their franchise superstar. With a team-high 35.1 minutes per game, there hasn't been much time at all for Lillard to rest and recover.
While Lillard's absence on the court will certainly have a major impact on the Blazers' success, it may be a good thing for the team in the long run. A healthier Lillard as the season approaches "Dame Time" later in the year is no doubt more important than any short-term, regular-season success.
Without their star point guard, the 6-7 Blazers will face off against the 8-4 Nuggets on Sunday.