November 23, 2013; Oakland, CA, USA; Golden State Warriors center Andrew Bogut (12, right) defends against Portland Trail Blazers point guard Damian Lillard (0) during the third quarter at Oracle Arena. The Trail Blazers defeated the Warriors 113-101. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Portland Trail Blazers' Damian Lillard talks about his 'crafty game'

As a smaller player, Portland Trail Blazers’ Damian Lillard has more trouble avoiding injuries.

“If you can have more of a crafty game, it definitely won’t be as hard on your body,” Lillard told Scott Cacciola of the New York Times before Monday night’s game against the New York Knicks. “If you don’t have to get into the lane and challenge bigs all the time, you’re not breaking your body down. You can play more relaxed.”

Lillard believes shooting better from the outside will help him avoid contact and thus, protect his body.

Injuries like the one Derrick Rose suffered last week that will sideline him for the season for second straight year have bothered Lillard and he feels for Rose, but he refuses to focus on injuries.

“I can’t focus on it,” he said. “I can’t let myself. If an injury is going to happen, it’s going to happen.”

Lillard has led the Blazers to a 13-2 start. He’s averaging 20.1 points, 6.1 assists and 4.2 rebounds per game in his second season.

Tags: Damian Lillard Portland Trail Blazers

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