Sports—especially football—hold the same appeal to me as choking on a hunk of poisoned caramel corn dipped in molten lead. However! I love football a wee bit more when they are lampooned by the geniuses over at Bad Lip Reading. Check it out! (Especially the ref at the 1:03 mark. HILARIOUS!)
"Ooh-de-lally, ooh-de-lally, golly, what a day."
— Roger Miller, full-time troubadour, part-time rooster, one of the patron saints of the laid-back.
It kinda feels like today was a day in which everything that was supposed to have been evenly spread over the course of a week was let loose in one massive "goosh!" Like a kinked hose with someone holding their thumb ever-so-slightly over the opening, making sure that a torrent of what-the-fuck comes screeching out, full-blast with the force of a wide-open fire hydrant.
It began at around four in the morning, when a Portland woman made national news for falling and wedging herself in an eight-inch gap between two different buildings, at which point Mercury blogger/Live Wire Radio writer Ben Coleman happened upon her, called 9-1-1, and set in motion the events that led to firemen cutting giant blocks of concrete into a wall and lubing the woman through the holes.
It swiftly moved to the realm of college sports, with the news that Oregon Ducks coach Chip Kelly decided, as so many wise sages have done before him, to leave the relatively safe climes of College Football success, where he wields an amazing amount of control, pulls in huge paychecks, and practically drowns in power and influence; and instead go to the pros. Specifically, Philadelphia, where Michael Vick has more power, influence, and money than Kelly will ever have, and this is after Vick went to prison for killing dogs for fun and entertainment.
Then, almost immediately after this became news, the President signed a 23-step executive order in an effort to toughen up gun control in the country, one of those steps effectively closing a loophole that makes asking "Do you have tickets to the gun show?" almost exclusively the set-up to a really terrible dad-joke punchline.
Finally, to close out this crammed-too-full news day, Heisman runner-up and Notre Dame inspiration Manti Te'o was revealed to have been involved in a hoax in which the dead girlfriend who was a key part of his heartwarming, life-affirming tale of perserverance and triumph was completely fabricated. She never existed. The fifteen-ring circus that will unfold hasn't even finished getting its tent set all the way up, and this is already maybe the most fascinating story I've heard in quite awhile.
I think our Baltimore correspondent Wee-Bey Brice sums it up pretty eloquently:
Seems like a perfect way to let this firecracker of a day go out is just relax, lay back, maybe put on that Robin Hood soundtrack, and watch a nice, low-stakes game of basketball. The Blazers are coming off a 3 game losing streak? The Cavaliers are... the Cavaliers? That'll fit the bill just nicely!
But wait: It can't be too low-stakes. Then it's no fun. There's gotta be something to artificially increase the importance of tonight's game. Like when you were playing in the driveway with your friend or younger sibling and at some point one of you struck on the idea of counting backwards from 5 so every possession was a potential buzzer beater, complete with cupped hands and a whisper-yelled "HAAAAAAAAAAA" from the victor.
I got it! Kyrie Irving vs Damian Lillard. Last year's Rookie of the Year vs this year's Rookie of the Year (this sentence was jinx protected when I typed it). This is their first showdown this year, and while the Rose Garden crowd has taken to chanting "M-V-P" when Lillard gets hot, it's not just a fun chant in Cleveland; Irving is without question his teams M-V-P.
People gonna have something to prove tonight. So let's watch em prove it, shall we?
Sat. Jan 19 @ Memorial Coliseum
5:45 pm, $14-24, all ages
game #1: Guns N Rollers vs. Heartless Heathers
game #2: Break Neck Betties vs. High Rollers
It's been rumored for awhile, but nobody's ever felt strongly enough to bite on reporting it - not until Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports decided to bite today, in a string of tweets that reports the Maloof Brothers have decided to sell the Sacramento Kings to the Hanson-Ballmer group for the sum of $500 million dollars.
This is beautiful news, as one of the worst things David Stern ever did in his once great, now poisoned and tarnished run as NBA Commissioner, was allow the Sonics to be hijacked and dumped in Oklahoma City. But basketball appears to be returning to Seattle, and hopefully, so will the Supersonics name, because the Seattle Kings just doesn't have the same ring, and honestly, nothing that bears the urine-soaked scent of Sacramento should make the trip up I-5 intact.
Now if the NBA would also just finally pull the trigger on a three way trade for the names of the Utah Jazz, the New Orleans Hornets, and the Charlotte Bobcats. And then contract the Bobcats.
"That's good. That's like a 40-degree day. And ain't nobody got nothin' to say about a 40-degree day."
—Stringer Bell, Amateur Lawyer, Entrepreneur, Man Without a Country.
So let's start up front with why give-a-shit levels aren't quite high for today's game, even though the Blazers are a few games above .500, and the Orlando Magic are riding an 8-game losing streak into the Rose City tonight:
1) The last functional Mafia in America (now that the RIAA/MPAA is ultimately defanged) is holding their illegitimate "championship" for amateur college students playing the game of American-Rules Football while tonight's game unfolds. So these are the options: Watching a 18-15 team with one legitimate All-Star (not Aldridge, either) play a 12-21 team whose best player at this point in time is probably Jameer Fucking Nelson; or watching The Alabama Period Jokes versus the Notre Dame Rape Apologists playing for a meaningless "championship" thanks to the inadequacies of the BCS.
2) Good old-fashioned, down-home, soggy Pacific Northwest skepticism has set in: Yeah, this team is 18-15, but look how early in the season it is, and look how inconsistently this team has played. It feels like dumb luck that the W-L numbers aren't reversed. And besides, as everyone knows, one of the strongest mystical powers in the realm of sport is the call of "Due." And all that Orlando's eight-game losing streak really means is that the Magic, a team that isn't anywhere near as bad as its record indicates, is "Due."
The properties of "Due's" powers are probably best explained thusly: You know how the farther you get up the ladder in a Mortal Kombat game, the more the computer starts reading your inputs and countering every fireball, bicycle kick and "Get Over Here" spear you're throwing before you even finish throwing it? That's how "Due" works. Your offense might be perfectly executed. Your instincts are sound, your reactions are perfect. But "Due" turns real life into a fucking cheating shitdick of a CPU and you got a broken controller.
So while Portland should feel like a brused, weakened Orlando is in the perfect position (on their knees) from which to plant a foot on their back and launch skyward up the Power Rankings throughout this home stand, instead there's a feeling more like "So how is 'Due' gonna take it out of our ass tonight, huh? I'll watch the highlights on SportsCenter tonight, fuck it. There are exploited roided meatheads knocking into each other on ESPN right now for the college championship. Man, that game is so much more pure and exciting, isn't it? Those kids are playing for
money illusory glory debtors a last gasp of life before running a used car dealership in Macon Their pimps in the Athletic Director's office The love of the game!"
However, this could work in Portland's favor, as a reliably observable phenomenon in Oregon sports shows that the less attention is paid to teams in this general area, the better they do. When left to our quiet devices up here in the forest-muffled greenery of the Pacific Northwest, we get our work done with skill and aplomb. The brighter the spotlight, the more prone to wilting. Oregon sports teams are often left looking like perpetual bridesmaids, standing just outside the hot lights, brushing away tears made of equal parts happiness, achievement, regret and resentment.
So if nobody's looking and everyone's distracted, it should follow that the Blazers could completely ruin Orlando tonight, and hand them their ninth straight L, to hang around their throat like a drunk at a beer festival rocking a half-eaten pretzel necklace.
Worse things could happen on a 40 degree day.
If you're not following Jose Canseco on Twitter, do yourself a gigantic favor and get over there now. It's the most glorious train wrecky celebrity experience you'll ever get. Most of the time he's insanely positive (Do u ever wake up and say to yourself. I'm a bad mother$@/:, I do.), insanely deep (If today was yesterday and today is tomorrow then how will tommorow be.) or sometimes just insane (Is it possible to be unlucky your whole life and lucky the rest of your life). Is he kidding? Probably not?
But one of the best things I've ever read on the Internet was his list of his top 10 New Year's Resolutions (actually 11) that he tweeted the night before last. Here they are in order.
1. spend more time with my daughter
2. get stronger and fitter
3. help people who are getting screwed wherever i can
4. return to pro baseball as player or manager and have dinners with McGwire, La Russa, Bonds, and Selig.
5. Fight Shaq in MMA cage match
5. develop and launch Ponce de CAnseco a real anti aging drink
6. Get elected to a important political office in the U.S. or canada to help all people and governments with there problems
7. Become a world class entreprenur and found at least two great companies that make peoples lives better and funner
8. Write a third book and do a move deal for Juiced!
9. Do at least 100 promotional deals for good companies and products like Animal Rights, Human health, Environmental, and Beer companies
10. Use position as A List entertainer doing reality, TV, movies, blogs, columns, appearances to be able to do more charity
I'm especially fond of #3 and the first #5. I also had "Fight Shaq" on my list, but he's more likely to actually do it. #9 is pretty mystifying. Is "Animal Rights" a company or a product? #10 is awesomely un-self-aware and, including #6, is the second miss-use of the letter a in the list.
Tonight I'll be bringing you a cutting edge, live recap from the upper 200 level of the Rose Garden where our very own Portland Trail Blazers are taking on the Philadelphia 76ers, a team I know very little about except that over the summer they lost Andre Igoudala and gained Andrew Bynum in the epic trade that brought Dwight Howard to the Lakers. I use the term "gained" lightly because Bynum had knee surgery this summer and has been experiencing numerous health setbacks since, leaving Philadelphia a little wanting for production and team cohesion. Guys you might have heard of on their roster include Jrue Holiday, Evan Turner, and Nick Young. They're 14-16 and not playing so great. Also they have Kwame Brown and an ailing Jason Richardson.
The Blazers are coming off a tough loss in LA last night. (Did you watch that? Because it was a fucking massacre.) Tonight could go one of two ways. 1. The Blazers are tired and disheartened and give up an easy loss to a team desperate for some wins or 2. The Blazers are charged up after last night's beating and take it out on a vulnerable team. Here's hoping they're up to it. The Blazers are clearly the more talented team. The only way they'll lose this game is giving it away.
I've been listening to some of the chatter about Jrue Holiday. The guy is much better than I realized. He's the same age as Lillard but already in his fourth season. He's third in assists in the NBA and averaging 18 points and 8 assists per game. Those are legit numbers. Excited to see Lillard and him match up.
Hello Blogtown readers and Blazer fans! Tonight the Blazers take on the Phoenix Suns, 7:00 p.m., here at the Rose Garden.
This is not the Phoenix Suns that ran Portland out of the playoffs two and a half years ago on their way to the Western Conference Finals. That championship-worthy team was promptly dismantled after being run out of the playoffs by the Lakers, and since then Phoenix has wandered the wilderness, cobbling together line-ups and over-performing thanks to stalwart coach Alvin Gentry. They've traded Goran Dragic, then signed him back as starting point guard, they've lost valuable role players and defensive stalwarts like Jason Richardson and Grant Hill, and most significantly, last summer superstar Steve Nash left for the hated Lakers.
So, Blazer fans, Phoenix has also known pain. Still, when Portland faced them a month ago, Phoenix won handily. Since then however, the Suns have had a streaky season and personnel issues. Unfortunately for Portland, Phoenix arrives in town tonight on something of a hot streak. They've coalesced, played well, and won four in row.
But guess who else is on a hot streak? The Portland Trail Blazers! They have also coalesced, also played well, and also won four in a row. The Blazers have found role players in unlikely places (looking at you, Babbitt) and rookie Damian Lillard is getting recognition from around the league as a superior point guard.
Even with their awful 2-10 road record the Suns present a challenge to the Blazers in the form of the chin-strapped Polish sensation, Marcin Gortat. An athletic center, Gortat will eat the Blazers alive inside if LaMarcus Aldridge isn't playing (he sprained his ankle last week and is listed as a game time decision). And if Gortat is being guarded well that means power forward Luis Scola will be available to score. Point guard Goran Dragic is also a crafty player, skilled at driving and getting into the lane. Bottling him up and denying Gortat the ball will be key to winning this game.
The holidays are a blast and all, but the time of year I like best is just on the other side of them: the start of a fresh, clean year, full of commitments to self-betterment and the mystery of unlimited potential. The calendar, event-wise, is usually pretty sparse in the early days of a new year (all the better to stay in and concentrate on trying out the Candida Diet and brushing your hair 100 strokes a day, or what have you), but one thing I am really looking forward to is the screening of Glow: The Story of the Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling, which follows up with former stars of the short-lived televised experiment with women's wrestling:
Yesssss. Mark it in your fresh, clean 2013 calendar: Glow will be screening at the Hollywood January 5 and 6.
We're LIVE at the Rose Garden with glasses firmly against brow—four eyes to follow each of the NBA Draft Lottery picks we'll see tonight when your Portland Trail Blazers welcome the New Orleans Hornets.
The top pick meets the top player in the 2011 Draft class, as Anthony Davis (yes, he of unibrow fame) and Damian Lillard share an NBA floor for the first time.
Davis has shown his skillset in limited action, leading all rooks with 2.2 blocks per the nine games he's played. Lillard has done nothing short of dazzle all season, averaging nearly 19 points and six assists per game while earning praise from even the most curmudgeonly of coaches.
"I think he's a wonderful player," said San Antonio coach Gregg Popovich, who watched Lillard reach season highs in points (29), assists (7) and rebounds (6) during Portland's "thorough" 98-90 win over the Spurs on Thursday. "His skills are obvious, but I like his demeanor as much as I like his skills. He really plays within himself, he's not afraid of contact and he really understands how to take advantage of situations."
Portland's situation tonight involves a NOLA team that's dropped six straight, hasn't won away from The Big Easy all month and may change their mascot to...a Pelican. A better idea? Click past the jump and follow along as I deftly describe the action, on and off the floor.
"And your name is "You're wanting." You can't play the man's game, you can't close them? Go home and tell your wife your troubles. 'Cause only one thing counts in this world: Get them to sign on the line which is dotted."
— Alec Baldwin, motivational speaker, collector of metal genitals, All-Star voter.
As Mike Acker of Rip City Project pointed out on twitter today, LaMarcus Aldridge isn't doing very well in the voting. Lackluster was, I believe, the word being used. Even if it wasn't, it's an appropriate word. Lackluster is how I feel about LaMarcus Aldridge. It's how I've been feeling, since, like, ever.
"What the hell, you dumb hobbit," you might be saying. "How do you call these stats 'lackluster?'"
Those stats are pretty good. You're right. But stats ain't everything. I remember a player back in the '80s, A forward named Adrian Dantley. He got most of his notice playing for the Utah Jazz and the Detroit Pistons. Sweet looking jumper. Plain demeanor - Smooth, but ultimately bland. His numbers were often really impressive, and he inspired not a single emotion in anyone. Not once. In fact, the Pistons didn't start winning championships until they traded his ass to Dallas for Mark Aguirre. Suddenly, the Bad Boys are wresting rings out of David Stern's pockets with a hungry sneer, and Adrian Dantley is watching from Dallas, mildly shrugging at the hubbub and putting up his consistent, uninspiring numbers.
LaMarcus Aldridge reminds me of Adrian Dantley right about now.
This is San Antonio Spurs coach Gregg Popovich. If the world were a good, and just place, he would be commissioner of the National Basketball Association. But the world is not so, and the league is run by a man who was once good - but those days are far behind him. David Stern is a sour, wrinkled creature now, fueled by resentment and fear, his soul curdled. Where once stood a marketing genius, now sits a weathered, Gollum-y husk of defeat.
Popovich is maybe the sharpest mind in basketball now that Phil Jackson is gone, and he was probably smarter than Phil anyway. He will bring a classic Popovich team with him to the Rose Garden: Fundamentally strong, unflappably consistent, and incredibly boring to watch... unless you know what to watch for.
Tonight, watch as Meyers Leonard and JJ Hickson find themselves in the position of trying to stop Tim Duncan. Watch as Damian Lillard attempts to withstand the fusillade of defensive schemes Pop will throw at him. Watch as Luke Babbitt wistfully sighs on the bench and wishes he could be a librarian in basketball shorts like everyone else on the Spurs side of the court.
Who knows. This Blazers squad might not only learn something, they might teach these old dogs a little something of their own.
HOT LIVE BLOG ACTION begins live at the Rose Garden at 7:30pm.
A season-long roadie behind them, the Trail Blazers are happy to be home for the holidays. Well, the holiday shopping season at least.
We're live at the Rose Garden as the Blazers host the
Anaheim Virginia Beach Sacramento (for now) Kings in a nationally televised NBA soiree that tips off six home games over the next two weeks for Portland.
The last fortnight? Two overtime wins and five losses, though as reigning Western Conference Rookie of the Month Damian Lillard sees it, it could've been better. Or, y'know, much worse.
"We dropped the first four games, the first two we could have easily won," Lillard said. "But on the other hand, the two that we won were in overtime and we could have dropped all seven. But I think it was good for us going through some growing pains, kind of like it's been the whole season."
So show me that smile again, Blazer fans! Then click past the jump and follow along as I deftly describe all the action, on and off the floor.
Maybe it was because of the holidays, but last Saturday's roller derby extravaganza against Seattle was effin' festive. The Heartless Heathers were sporting neon, the brand-new pep squad Purple Reign was cheering, and the Rose City Rollers were kicking Rat City's butt with three out of four games in Portland's back pocket. Even the last, losing game against Seattle—with the Break Neck Betties falling to Grave Danger—was a knuckle-biter 'til the last jam, with a final score of Grave Danger 102, Betties 78.
There were some spectacular moments, like Scald Eagle from the Guns N Rollers laying waste to Ophelia Mellons on the Derby Liberation Front (go to the 9:22 mark—the hit is breathtaking); her fans were starry-eyed (that pic by Frank Lavelle Photography is amazing). Watching the Heartless Heathers get their first win in a blue moon—and looking like a new team while they did it with some kick-ass defense. New GNR jammer Ivana Thrasher's moves, which are fast and furious. Fresh blood skaters on High Rollers like Hari Kari, and vets Minstrel Psycho and KicKassedy looking top-notch. Eavesdropping on High Rollers' Napoleon Blownapart staring up at the Winterhawks portrait banners, saying, "Someday we'll be up there." And getting to see a fresh lineup of Betties skate after a bevy of last year's crew retired. Plus NO MORE MINOR PENALTIES! Love!
Quick recaps of each game after the jump.
On the tragic murder/suicide committed Saturday by Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Jovan Belcher, Fox Sports writer Jason Whitlock says what most politicians are too cowardly to admit:
Our current gun culture simply ensures that more and more domestic disputes will end in the ultimate tragedy, and that more convenience-store confrontations over loud music coming from a car will leave more teenage boys bloodied and dead.
In the coming days, Belcher’s actions will be analyzed through the lens of concussions and head injuries. Who knows? Maybe brain damage triggered his violent overreaction to a fight with his girlfriend. What I believe is, if he didn’t possess/own a gun, he and Kasandra Perkins would both be alive today.
That is the message I wish Chiefs players, professional athletes and all of us would focus on Sunday and moving forward. Handguns do not enhance our safety. They exacerbate our flaws, tempt us to escalate arguments, and bait us into embracing confrontation rather than avoiding it.
But we won’t. We’ll watch Sunday’s game and comfort ourselves with the false belief we’re incapable of the wickedness that exploded inside Jovan Belcher Saturday morning.
Guns don't make us safer. They just don't.
Now, here's the hard facts:
Rose City Rollers vs. Rat City Rollergirls
Four mini-bouts with Heartless Heathers vs. Sockit Wenches, Guns N Rollers vs. Derby Liberation Front, High Rollers vs. Throttle Rockets, Break Neck Betties vs. Grave Danger
Saturday, December 1
Memorial Coliseum, 300 N. Winning
5:45 pm, $14-24 (tomorrow night Rose City's roller girls will be out on the town selling 2-for-1 tickets—check their Facebook or Twitter for locations, but you can bet if there's a dance party somewhere they'll be there)
Saturday's afterparty is at the Bossanova Ballroom w/DJ Gregarious and rad amounts of dancing.
"Marcia Marcia Marcia!"
— Jan Brady, Voice of the Disenfranchised, Patron Saint of the Easily Fed Up.
So, anyone wanna talk about the game tonight? It could be a pretty fun game. Kevin Love is coming back home after coming back from an injury, leaving him with a lot of something to prove on the day after Thanksgiving. This could be a "statement" game, if one believes in such sports cliches as meaning anything more than being a chewy set of syllables for a talking head to roll around in their mouth.
The Blazers just got their asses handed to them by the Phoenix Suns. Damian Lillard scored 24 points but had twice as many turnovers as assists, and Meyers Leonard got called out by coach Terry Stotts for being kind of a shitty defender. Which he is. So the Blazers have just as much to prove, plus Aldridge doesn't —
— well, no, I guess they weren't, but it's not like people on the same team need to—
DID YOU READ THIS SAD ARTICLE ABOUT HOW BRANDON ROY LOST HIS RELIGION AFTER RETIRING?
Yes, it was very interesting. But I think Lillard might—
MAN I WISH BRANDON ROY WAS GONNA BE PLAYING I REMEMBER WHEN—
You know why he's not playing? Because he shouldn't have come back in the first place. Because his knees have less substance to them than a Kardashian farting. Because that identity he's looking for is going to be "Limping, permanently disabled ex-basketball player who had a pretty good five seasons in Portland when Nate McMillan was still there." He's not in Portland anymore, he's not in Portland tonight, and there's nothing to be gained from picking at this particular scab any further.
You'd think the guy actually won a championship here or something.
This last week has been weird, in that large numbers of Portlanders, who already have a weird, complicated relationship with their basketball team, went all ex-boyfriend mode on retired (then un-retired) Blazer Brandon Roy. Seriously, large contingents of the Blazers community are acting like dudes going to the club, or the mall, hearing from friends that their ex is gonna be there, and then diving into puddles of adolescent emotion all the way up to the armpits.
Meanwhile Timberwolves star Kevin Love, who is actually from Oregon, is like:
So if you didn't get your fill of awkward emotion and uncomfortable interaction yesterday, join me tonight, right here on Blogtown, for some Hot Live Blog Action when the Timberwolves take on the Blazers at 7pm.
Portland will field one of eight founding teams in a new women's professional soccer league, the U.S. Soccer Federation announced today.
The league, which will kick off in the spring, pits the Rose City against clubs from Seattle (who you, like, totally already hate), Boston, Chicago, western New York, New Jersey, Kansas City and Washington, D.C.
Two previous attempts at a U.S. women's pro league have failed, but with MLS finding a winning formula in particular markets and the success of the U.S. Women internationally, Timbers owner and new-league-investor Merritt Paulson said he hopes to help build a top-flight women's league Stateside. He noted announcements on team name, logo and uniforms and roster announcements will happen over the coming months.
"The Timbers are, and always will be, steadfastly committed to growing the sport of soccer in our region at all levels," Paulson said, "and championing a new women’s league and operating a team here in Soccer City, USA, will be an important part of that growth."
Paulson and the Timbers were the first MLS ownership group to be involved in the league's launch, and it's still unclear how MLS owners in the other seven cities will be involved (MLSSoccer.com notes Seattle's club will not be owned by Sounders FC, who have a team in the USL's W-League). During the today's announcement, USSF president Sunil Gulati indicated he's open to strengthening ties between the new league and MLS, but either way, he's happy to have Portland—and its excitable fans—on board.
"What made Portland interesting is the Timbers have an extraordinary fan base, the city has been a huge supporter of the game and the investor group led by the Paulson family is as good as it can get," Gulati said. "It's a terrific market with a great track record for the sport."
Want a peek at some potential future Portland players? Well, you're in luck, Portlander: Jeld-Wen Field will host a U.S. Women's national team friendly against Ireland on Nov. 28, along with a public training session on Nov. 27.
Derrick Rose and Damian Lillard won't share the same floor tonight. But if the first nine games of the season are any indication, it may not be long before the young pair share the same rarefied air.
Rose (the league's best point guard) is out rehabbing a potentially season-ending injury. Lillard (the league's best rookie point) is one of the bright spots for Portland's season thus far, averaging 19 points and six assists but more importantly playing with a confidence that has teammates buying in.
"Took big shots, made big shots," said Portland All-Star forward LaMarcus Aldridge of Lillard, who poured in 16 of the Blazers' final 21 points on his way to a career night on Friday during a 119-117 OT thriller over Houston. And while Lillard has a long way to go before, say, ad campaigns are built around him not playing, he's off to a rather rosy start, leading all rookies in scoring, assists, steals and minutes.
Sure, Rose And Lillard may not be in the same arena tonight, but with one idle and the other rising, you can't blame Portland fans for hoping the duo will eventually be mentioned in the same sentence.
We're live at the Rose Garden, so click past the jump and follow along as I deftly describe all the action, on and off the floor.
"So I guess this is growing up."
- Mark Hoppus, '90s motivational speaker, amateur guitarist.
The Blazers got themselves a win in Sacramento, bringing their record to 3-5. Lotta people were saying that was a must win. Lotta people saying if they'd dropped that game, to that team, in that fucking armpit of a city, that discussion would have turned to things like tanking, or blowing stuff up, or pulling a plug.
At least, until they won two or three games, and then talk would have turned to making a trade, or grabbing a free-agent, or finding a player to put on a pedestal and through sheer force of will and want, wishing them into a state of advanced evolution that Professor X would marvel at.
Because this is how we do in Portland, and this is how we've almost always done, even when contending for championships; What's happening now is never as interesting as what COULD happen later. We have transmogrified from a city of basketball fans to a city of basketball theoreticians. The playing of the games is almost secondary, what happens on the court is just fuel for the speculation machine.
Tonight's game is against the Houston Rockets, led by James Harden, a man whose season seems to exist solely so "unleashed" can have a proper usage in sportswriting. And for tonight's game, I wish to suggest a different approach:
He kinda looks like Marvin Gaye there.
He kinda looks like Patricia Arquette here.
And here, he kinda looks like he should be airbrushed onto the lower half of a commemorative plate with maybe a photo of him driving to the hoop, or maybe a pack of wolves baying at a full moon, or something equally opulent.
James Harden of the Houston Rockets was cut loose from the Oklahoma City Thunder, and then promptly showed everybody watching that he has maybe the most internal restraint of any man on earth next to Sting, who has, through the power of tantra, learned to harness his orgasmic powers and control them, much like a didgeridoo player can harness the wind in his lungs and cycle it through his body in ways others could never do.
What I'm saying is that Marvin Arquette up there is fucking ice cold from pretty much anywhere on the court, he apparently could do this all the time, and was just holding it back when in Oklahoma City because he knew that Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant were the stars, so he assumed his role and chipped in when he could.
He doesn't have to do that now. Now he is the star, and as weird as it is to say, James Harden coming to Portland is a legitimate reason to cancel whatever Friday night plans you had, and plant yourself in front of a television to watch the Blazers try to lock this man down.
Watch with us, why don't you? Hot Live Blog Action begins tonight, right here at Blogtown, at 7pm.
Blazer fans? Psssssh...what a bunch of sellouts.
UNTIL TONIGHT. For the first time in 195 games, Portland will play a regular-season home game in front of empty seats (that technically haven't been paid for). It's the first non-sellout since December 2007 (heady times, man) and it also happens to mark the first day on the job for new Blazers President and CEO Chris McGowan.
"We're eternally grateful to our fans for their loyalty during the sellout streak, and look forward to their continued support throughout the season," McGowan said in a press release. "With a new coach, new players and a high-energy brand of NBA basketball, we're building something special in Portland and encourage all fans to get on board for an exciting ride."
OK, McGowan—you got me! I won't pass up a ride! Let alone an exciting one! So click past the jump and follow along (since you're obviously not here, dick) as I document the beginning of a whole new streak!
While I'm not generally a fan of horse racing, I can't imagine not betting my entire life savings on the competitors in the Japan World Cup 3 videogame. The best part? I'm so entranced by the bizarro "horses" I can't concentrate on who actually wins! (I suppose we all do.) WATCH.
Sunday, November 4
Kelly's Olympian, 426 SW Washington, 21+
Most likely (but you never know): Olympia's Oly Rollers vs. NYC's Gotham Girls Roller Derby
11 am-2 pm (champ game starts at noon—don't forget to roll your clocks back on Saturday night)
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