Only Clyde Drexler has received the honor more times
For immediate release
PORTLAND, Oregon (July 31) -- Damian Lillard has officially entered elite company in Oregon’s professional sports history.
The Portland Trail Balzers guard was named the Harry Glickman Male Professional Athlete of the Year on Wednesday by the Oregon Sports Awards voting panel for the fourth time in seven seasons.
Only Clyde Drexler (1985, 1989, 1990, 1991, 1992) has received the honor more times. Lillard, who shared the award with Portland Timbers midfielder Diego Valeri in 2019, is the first repeat winner since former Trail Blazers guard Brandon Roy won the award three consecutive times from 2007-2009.
A Trail Blazer has now won the award, which was incepted in 1968 and is the Oregon Sports Awards’ third-oldest honor, 22 times. Other past Trail Blazers to win include Geoff Petrie (1971, 1973), Bill Walton (1977, 1978), Buck Williams (1990), Damon Stoudamire (1996) and LaMarcus Aldridge (2014).
Lillard received the nod over fellow finalists Ryan Crouser (Nike/USA track and field) and Valeri. Former Oregon State athletes Matthew Boyd (Detroit Tigers) and Jordan Poyer (Buffalo Bills) and Portland Winterhawk Seth Jones (Columbus Blue Jackets) were also nominated.
The Oregon Sports Awards voting panel elected to cap the ballot at six athletes.
Lillard called into NBC Sports Northwest’s talk show “The Bridge” on Wednesday to accept his award and participate in an interview with show host Justin Myers. A highlight reel clip of the interview is available here.
Sport Oregon, which manages the Oregon Sports Awards, and NBC Sports Northwest also presented Lindsey Horan with the Harry Glickman Female Professional Athlete of the Year award during the broadcast.
Lillard is the second Trail Blazer to be featured on “The Bridge” in the last week. Sport Oregon and NBC Sports Northwest announced Portland head coach Terry Stotts as the 2019 Slats Gill Sportsperson of the Year on July 24. Stotts is the first Trail Blazer coach to win the award since Rick Adelman in 1992.
For Lillard, his 2018-2019 campaign with the Trail Blazers was arguably his strongest.
He guided Portland to its first Western Conference Finals appearance in 19 years following playoff series wins over Northwest Division rivals Oklahoma City and Denver.
Lillard perhaps played his most memorable basketball in the Trail Blazers first round win over the Thunder. He averaged 33 points, 6 assists and 4.4 rebounds per game and sent the Trail Blazers into the second round with a 50-point performance, punctuated with a 37-foot buzzer-beating 3-point shot, in the decisive game.
His 25.8 points per game in the regular season was is second-highest scoring average for his career. Lillard also averaged 6.9 assists, 4,4 rebounds and 1.1 steals per game and shot a career-best 44.4 percent from the floor. Lillard also shot 91.2 percent from the foul line.
Lillard earned his fourth NBA All-Star Game and All-NBA Team selections. He finished sixth in the NBA Most Valuable Player vote.
He also inched closer to Drexler at the top of Portland’s record book. He became the first Trail Blazer to record 2,000 points and 500 assists in a season, joining Drexler as the only member of the franchise to score 2,000-plus points in two seasons. Lillard also passed Drexler for the most 30-point, 10-assist performances (20-plus) in franchise history in March.
Lillard agreed to a four-year, $196 million contract extension with Portland on July 6. His new deal will kick in at the start of the 2021-2022 season. Lillard will have spent 13 seasons in Portland should he complete his contract with the Trail Blazers.
Presenting sponsor: HP
State Champion Sponsors: NBC Sports Northwest Nike Pamplin Media Group Portland Thorns Portland Timbers Portland Trail Blazers Providence Heath and Services Washington Trust Bank
About Sport Oregon
Sport Oregon’s mission is to drive economic growth and enhance Oregon’s quality of life through sports. Our non-profit organization has served as the state’s sports economic development arm for more than two decades, injecting more than $350 million into Oregon’s economy through sports tourism.
Supported by more than 150 annual members, Sport Oregon works relentlessly to enhance the state’s economy and quality of life by attracting sports events and franchises. Sport Oregon’s major achievements include securing the NCAA Basketball Tournament, Davis Cup World Final, multiple U.S. Figure Skating Championships, Women’s World Cup Soccer and the Dew Tour. Sport Oregon was recognized as “Sports Commission of the Year” in 2010 by the National Association of Sports Commissions. View a complete list of Past Events and Future Events.
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