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From ring to the hoop: Damian Lillard’s penchant for boxing integral in his exploits on the court

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Portland Trail BlazersDamian Lillard is having an eventful season with his numbers justifying the same. The point guard’s love for boxing is well-known, but he recently shed light on its impact on his recent resurgence on the court.

Lillard

A number of Lillard’s Instagram posts, including his display picture, pertain to his work in the ring. The forced break last year resulted in Lillard putting in more hours than ever, and he is currently reaping the rewards of that hard work by replicating his exploits from last year, where he averaged 30 points per game.

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“Damian Lillard is not a basketball player, He’s a fighter who plays professional basketball,” trainer Cem Eren said while talking to ESPN.

His regime initially started with just a heavy-bag at his residence. However, after getting the hang of it, he has increased his routine to full-blown intense workouts.

Lillard revealed that his frequency went up during the hiatus which was brought upon due to the pandemic.

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“I was in there every day, literally like a fighter,” he told ESPN, having increased the workouts due to the hiatus last season. “I’ve got boxing shoes and all that, trunks — I’ve got everything”.

A glimpse into Lillard’s taxing workout drill

Damian Lillard's love for boxing fuels his fighting spirit

The 30-year-old begins his training as early as 7 AM with lifting and conditioning. Following which, he dons on the gloves to eight to ten three-minute rounds.

According to a report by ESPN, Lillard mainly emphasizes short jabs, combination punches while moving his feet and working with different angles.

“I feel like my legs are a lot stronger because I train in the ring so much,” he said, adding that his legs do not wear out as fast.

Lillard feels that shooting comes more naturally to him now due to his broader shoulders as a result of his pumped-up routine.

“I’m stronger up top because this is hard to do. It’s hard to keep your hands up, and you feel it. I feel like in small ways like that, it’s probably played a part”. Lillard said

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He is currently averaging 29.8 points, 4.3 rebounds and 7.9 assists per game while shooting 38% from the three-point range. 

Despite the immaculate numbers, the Trail Blazers player was not included in the All-Star game line-up.

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