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Sources: Damian Lillard Met with Blazers Owner to Discuss Future

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Portland Trail Blazers star point guard Damian Lillard met with team owner Paul Allen to gather an understanding of the organization’s direction, league sources told ESPN.

The two met discreetly for approximately one hour in Allen’s office at Moda Center before hosting the Indiana Pacers on Thursday, sources said. It was the first home game Allen attended in 2018.

Lillard, who will turn 28 on July 15, requested the meeting in part to reaffirm his commitment to the only professional franchise he has suited up for, but also to gain assurances that the organization was just as devoted to expeditiously crafting a title-contending team, sources said.

According to sources, the meeting was held without knowledge of anyone else in the organization. Allen notified the Trail Blazers’ basketball operations and business branch afterward.

In the weeks leading up to the meeting, Allen feared Lillard would request a trade, sources said, but a trade request was not made. The two-time All-Star made it clear, though, that he has championship aspirations and wanted to fulfill those lofty goals during the remaining years of his prime window.

Source: Chris Haynes of ESPN

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Sources: Suns, Austin Rivers Agree to Part Ways

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After trade with Wizards, Suns agree to part ways with G Austin Rivers, per ESPN sources. Rivers – earning $12.6M in final year of deal – becomes a free agent upon clearing waivers. As a veteran, sides concluded Rivers fits better on an older team that’s pursuing playoffs.

Source: Adrian Wojnarowski on Twitter

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Sources: Jazz Interested in Jabari Parker

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The Utah Jazz are one of the teams interested in Parker, according to multiple league sources. Derrick Favors is an awkward fit next to center Rudy Gobert, and his $16.9 million on the books for next season is non-guaranteed, meaning he could be one of the pieces involved. Favors can’t be traded until January 15, so Chicago would have to wait. Would it be worth it? The Bulls are loaded with young bigs, so it’s hard to see them taking back Favors unless additional assets are included. Utah has all of its future picks, except for a 2020 second-rounder going to the Cavaliers, and has two other seconds incoming.

Source: Kevin O’Connor of The Ringer

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Sources: Thunder Pick Up Option on Head Coach Billy Donavan

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The Oklahoma City Thunder has picked up option on Coach Billy Donovan’s contract for the 2019-20 season, the fifth year on his original deal, league source tells ESPN. Donovan is the fourth winningest coach with same team over his four years, behind Kerr, Popovich and Stevens.

Source: Adrian Wojnarowski on Twitter

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