Damian Lillard Flips Out On Chris Paul After Unnecessary Late Layup In Rockets Win

Bryan Brandom
(Photo: Getty Images)

Fair or not, Damian Lillard has spent much of his career feeling disrespected—by fans, by the media, and by all parties involved in selecting All-Star teams.

On Wednesday night, he felt disrespected by a fellow NBA star: Houston Rockets point guard Chris Paul.

During the closing seconds of Houston’s Wednesday-night victory over Lillard’s Portland Trail Blazers, Paul casually floated to the hoop for a layup that put his team ahead 121-112 with 13 seconds remaining.

Lillard took exception in the form of a heated discussion with Paul that ended with the Blazers point guard’s aggressively trying to slap the ball out of his opposition’s hands.

“I just asked him, I said, ‘What did you get out of that?'” Lillard said after the game, according to the Oregonian. “He said, ‘Y’all wasn’t guarding.’ But we got back. There was two guys back. We got back. He was sprinting the court to get the layup and CJ (McCollum) was chasing him. I just felt like in that situation, if you’ve got to do that to go get the layup, what’s the point of it? … I think as far as sportsmanship goes and respect, if the roles were reversed, I don’t think they would like it. They had two guys up the floor. I think (Shabazz Napier) ran back, I ran back for that reason … we get two guys back and he pretty much sprinted down the court to get the layup. CJ was chasing him. At that point, you just wonder, like, what is that going to do for you? What was you trying to get right there? And that’s what I asked him.”

Lillard’s coach Terry Stotts didn’t really care, however: “[Paul] can do whatever he wants. … Look, there’s some etiquette. But I’ve always said we’ve got bigger things to worry about than whether a guy does something like that or not.”

Though it came in his rookie year, Lillard has crossed the same line during his NBA career.