Thu. May 30th, 2024
alert-–-bucks-star-damian-lillard-is-seen-in-sportscenter-social-media-post-saying-‘i-didn’t-come-here-to-waste-my-time’-after-his-impressive-milwaukee-debut…-but-clip-is-actually-doctored-footage-of-2020-tnt-interviewAlert – Bucks star Damian Lillard is seen in SportsCenter social media post saying ‘I didn’t come here to waste my time’ after his impressive Milwaukee debut… but clip is ACTUALLY doctored footage of 2020 TNT interview

Bucks star Damian Lillard is seen in SportsCenter social media post saying ‘I didn’t come here to waste my time’ after his impressive Milwaukee debut… but clip is ACTUALLY doctored footage of 2020 TNT interview

  • Lillard appears to be discussing his arrival in Milwaukee after his Bucks debut
  • Instead, the footage appears to be from the NBA’s bubble in late 2020 
  • .com provides all the latest international sports news

By Alex Raskin Sports News Editor For .com

Published: | Updated:

ESPN’s social media team is being accused of creating a ‘deep fake’ of repurposed, three-year-old footage from a Damian Lillard interview following the All-Star’s triumphant debut with the Milwaukee Bucks.

The clip appeared on SportsCenter’s X account on Thursday night, following Lillard’s 39-point outburst in Milwaukee’s blowout win over the visiting Philadelphia 76ers.

‘Ain’t nothing I want more,’ the 33-year-old Lillard said in the clip. ‘I told you, when I first came here, I said I ain’t coming here to waste my time.’

At first glance, Lillard appeared to be speaking after Thursday’s season-opening win over the Sixers. Ostensibly, the former Portland Trail Blazers star was discussing his arrival in Milwaukee, and his expectations for his first season with his new team.

But a closer inspection revealed discrepancies with the court design as well as curious details about the ESPN microphone. Ultimately, fans figured out that the clip was originally recorded in 2020, when Lillard and his Trail Blazers were competing in the NBA’s Orlando-based, COVID-resistant bubble during the pandemic.

ESPN’s social media team is being accused of creating a ‘deep fake’ from a 2020 Lillard clip

The original clip appears to have been filmed at the NBA’s Orlando bubble in August of 2020

ESPN STATEMENT ON ‘DEEP FAKE’ 

An ESPN spokeswoman has provided the following statement to Mail Sport:

‘We occasionally look to connect sports moments of the past with contemporary imagery and storylines as part of our social content. While it was never our intention to misrepresent anything for fans, we completely recognize how this instance caused confusion’ 

So Lillard wasn’t talking about his arrival in Milwaukee, but rather his now-former team’s chances of advancing to the 2020 postseason at Disney World, where much of the league relocated during the coronavirus-interrupted season.

‘Don’t do this s***,’ long-time NBA reporter Kelly Dwyer wrote in response to the video.

‘Why hasn’t this totally irresponsible post been deleted yet?’ asked Forbes’ Shane Young.

Fans were less kind.

‘Lol Sportscenter was a clown contest before but this is just sad,’ one wrote. ‘ESPN is also a joke.’

Another clue: The Bucks wore a jersey reading ‘MILWAUKEE’ during Thursday’s victory (right)

Not only was the footage likely lifted from a 2020 clip, but the interview was done by TNT

As many pointed out, the Bucks logo seen behind Lillard in the clip is superimposed, as is the Milwaukee jersey that the perennial All-Star was wearing in the footage. In fact, it wasn’t even the correct Bucks jersey that was superimposed on Lillard.

What’s more, Lillard is speaking into a microphone connected to an elongated boom – something that was common in the year following the COVID-19 pandemic, but is not typically used any longer.

The original footage actually appears to come from a TNT interview with Lillard at the end of the 2019-20 season. Furthermore, ESPN’s social media team appeared to superimpose the World Wide Leader’s mic jacket on top of TNT’s logo. 

An ESPN spokeswoman has responded to Mail Sport’s request for comment, saying that the post wasn’t an attempt do deceive anyone, but rather an effort to connect a previous event to a current one. 

‘We occasionally look to connect sports moments of the past with contemporary imagery and storylines as part of our social content. While it was never our intention to misrepresent anything for fans, we completely recognize how this instance caused confusion’ 

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