Portland Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard is the first of three cover athletes for the upcoming NBA 2K21 release.

Developer 2K revealed the news on a video posted Tuesday to Twitter. Pre-orders for the game begin Thursday.

Lillard, a five-time All-Star who is in his eighth season with the Blazers, is the cover star for the current generation console players. Two more cover athletes will be announced Wednesday and Thursday, according to a TikTok video posted last week by NBA 2K20 cover star Anthony Davis of the Los Angeles Lakers.

For NBA 2K20, Davis appeared on the cover of the main edition and former Miami Heat star Dwyane Wade was on the Legend Edition.

Lillard, who turns 30 on July 15, was averaging a career-high 28.9 points when the 2019-20 season went on hiatus due to the coronavirus.

"It means a lot. It's one of those things that it's like a signature shoe. Everybody just don't get it," Lillard told Shams Charania of The Athletic. "To be able to join the line of the players that's been on the cover of 2K, it's an honor."

The No. 6 overall pick in the 2012 NBA Draft, Lillard was the 2012-13 Rookie of the Year and has averaged 24.0 points, 6.5 assists and 4.2 rebounds in 607 career games.

--Field Level Media

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