Utah Jazz: Jazz teammates, Damian Lillard like poise of rookie point guard Trey Burke
Not long after the Jazz traded their 14th and 21st picks to Minnesota for the No. 9 selection in the June 27 draft, the 6-footer was listed as an early favorite to be 2013-14 Rookie of the Year by a Vegas oddsmaker and CBS Sports.
Burke has his sights set on something even bigger — becoming an NBA All-Star.
He’s got a long path ahead of him to get to either spot after Orlando.
“Everybody adjusts different,” Lillard said. “He’s really competitive and confident, so it’ll be fun to see how he adjusts to the league.”
Fun is a good word to describe what it’s been like for many people to watch how Lillard thrived in that position. Despite how it appears from the outside, the Blazers’ young star admitted it wasn’t an easy process.
“It’s a challenge to do everything that comes with being an NBA player off the floor,” Lillard said. “That’s pretty tough.”
On top of that, Lillard said it's a balancing act “being responsible for a team” while not giving “the wrong vibe” to veterans and overstepping bounds.
“You don’t want them to think you know everything or think that you’re trying to take over the team, anything like that,” he said. “So you want to gain their trust.”
There’s more to it, he added.
“Then just stuff on the floor,” Lillard said. “You’ve got to tweak your game to where you can be successful being yourself but understanding that it’s tougher because of how the league is, how big guys are, how athletic they are.”
In other words, Favors was probably right about Burke getting to the gym.
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Thursday, 7 p.m. MT (NBA-TV)
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Blue Team: Harrison Barnes, DeMarcus Cousins, Anthony Davis, DeMar DeRozan, Derrick Favors, Gordon Hayward, Damian Lillard, Greg Monroe, Klay Thompson, Dion Waiters, Kemba Walker, John Wall. Coach: Tom Thibodeau.
White Team: Ryan Anderson, Mike Conley, Andre Drummond, Kenneth Faried, Paul George, Jrue Holiday, Kyrie Irving, DeAndre Jordan, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Ty Lawson, Chandler Parsons, Tyler Zeller. Coach: Monty Williams.
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