Five Minutes of Basketball

Kari Chisholm FacebookTwitterWebsite

You'll never believe where I was tonight. In one of the more ironic developments, a friend called this afternoon and wanted to know if I wanted a pair of Blazers tickets.

Yeah, just 24 hours after Blazers: Still Not Fan-Friendly, I figured heck, I haven't been to a game in a few years - maybe I'm wrong.

A few, random observations:

* Affordability? Where else in Portland can you get a well-poured Coors Light for just six bucks? Yeah, six bucks for crappy Colorado beer. When McMenamin's is selling real pints for under four bucks - and a PBR can be had anywhere for a buck fifty.

* Players? Never let it be said that the Blazers players can't play and don't have heart. After all, tonight, against their biggest rival - the hated Los Angeles Lakers - they managed five whole minutes of basketball. It was a furious comeback, almost all on the shoulders of hometown hero Damon Stoudamire. Too bad the buzzer beater fell short. Twice.

* Coaching? Yeah, if it hadn't been for that T on Mo Cheeks, we might have actually won this game.

* Stadium Experience? For $7.50, the faux cheez on my nachos at least could have been warm. The service in the so-called VIP section was friendly and fast - but cold nachos? Really?

* Bang for my Buck? Well, I did get my tickets for free.

* Fan Relations? Let's be honest. At least a third of the crowd was there in yellow jerseys and cheering for the Lakers. Of course, who could blame them? Brian Grant, our last Portland hero, is now in a Laker uniform. Not to mention, it was very odd watching Luke Walton play in a stadium under his dad's jersey hanging in the rafters. Maybe Portlanders should be cheering for the Lakers after all... Or perhaps that's going too far.

Was it worth it? Sure, I had a good time. I missed West Wing, but I'll take free tickets any day.

As Rasheed Wallace used to say, it was a good game. Both teams played hard.

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    I missed West Wing...

    Dude, we all missed West Wing, because that stupid game was on television. It's not on until Friday at 7:00 PM.

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    Uh yeah... I hate KGW for that. Thanks for the tip. Guess I'll erase that tape then.

  • Patrick Allen (unverified)

    What he said.

    I was home and missing West Wing and pissed about it. I've pretty much written this season off until reruns since the Blazers have done this what, maybe 5 times this year.

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    One thing that makes everything better is winning... the beer tastes better, the nachos seem less cold, and the West Wing tape delay feels less annoying. I'm sure Sonics fans are having a much warmer season up I-5, and it's not because Key Arena is better than the Rose Garden. While I am sure there are enough absketball purists that enjoy the game regardless of the outcome, and will put up with various (percieved or real) indignities, most of us need some W's to make the ticket and concession prices worthwhile.

    That being said... and dspite last night's outcome... can we all agree that we LOVE seeing the Lakers suck this year?

  • (Show?) awful lot of whining from someone who got free tickets in the VIP section. :-) Not all of us are so well-connected, like my wife and son who sat in the nosebleed section last night, for tickets we paid for.

    Coors Light? Maybe if you walked around, you'd see there's Oregon microbrews, albeit overpriced, if you make the effort. The same with the "nachos" were expecting melted cave-aged gruyere? Good grief.

    Maybe part of the problem is that fans of basketball --as opposed to the Blazers per se-- can't get close enough to the game to fully enjoy it for anything resembling a reasonable price tag...while the good seats are bought up by corporations, lobbyists, and other folks who care less about the game then showing clients a good time. Who took the "entertainment" tax write-off for your tickets, Kari? :-)

    Frank Dufay

  • Anne Dufay (unverified)

    Well, I have to take issue with my esteemed hubby here. There were some microbrews, but no IPA's or ESB's. Having a rather limited beer palete and having nothing there that called to it I made the mistake of ordering an unfamiliar California Pinot. $6.00 for some vague grape juice-cum-vinigar in a plactic cup. The only place I've found a worse deal is at the Schnitz -- that god-awful swill they sell as "Champagne" takes the prize for absolute worst drink deal in Portland.

    My 13 year-old ordered the nacho's, and he knows what he's getting. He likes them. I had some of his on the "when in Rome" theory. As in, the only time I can stomach a hot dog is at a game.

    Our seats were really not bad. Our son enjoyed the game, he's a fanatic BB player. He's not a big Blazer fan, but he tries to root for the home team. His heart belongs to the Lakers, though.

    I have to confess, I always root for the Blazers but as the first quarter progressed I began to vacilate. The Blazer fans would boo and hiss and yell really crass and ugly things (regardless of the young kids like my son around them) at Coby Bryant everytime he so much as moved. After a while it began to seem to me more like the behavior of a bunch of hyenas on a downed tiger than the righteous outrage of the good guys.

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    Of course, none of this really matters, because the important thing is that there are only 11 days until Yankees v. Red Sox in spring training.

  • jj ark (unverified)

    snort. The only big organized even I go to is Orycon, Portlands own sci fi convention. Think of it as the antithesis of a basketball game -- three full days (and nights) of sci fi geekery. Why is this relevant you ask???? Because food service there is free, plentiful, and the same nachos you got at the Rose Garden were hot. Really hot, actually.

    I think that the reasons for the cold nachos, expensive swill and general lousy service has something to do with Tims column on minimum wages. The average worker at the RG isn't making a bucket of cash.

  • Tom Civiletti (unverified)

    I know my attitude towards the Blazers has changed when I don't even bother with a TV game against the Lakers. There was a time when a Blazer loss might put me in a bad mood the whole next day.

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    About the only thing stopping me from deep-sixing my ludicrously overpriced Comcast cable is the Tivo-clone DVR that figures out what time KGW has moved The West Wing to and records it for me in HD.

  • Anne Dufay (unverified)

    My most severe critic, my spouse..., has pointed out to me that I misspelled Kobe. I stand corrected.

    However, I never pretended to be much of a fan. That's why I was not our son's first choice to accompany him to the game, but Frank was sick, so I filled in.

    The novelty of my presence at this event wore off quickly - I think he was regretting it as early as the moment I began hectoring, er questioning, him as to why there seemed to be no African-American woman on the Blazer Dancers... Then I segued into a short rant on the misogyny of the song "American Woman" and how I'd always hated it. As he was trying to watch the women (well, he is 13...)

    Perhaps not one's idea of the very best BBall game company... :-)

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    Joo want hoops, mang? :)

    Seriously, best game in town is PSU right about now (excepting today, when I break my consecutive season streak at 5 of worshipping, in person, the perfection that is Gonzaga basketball. They're at the Chiles Center, and before the Spaghetti Feed, there'll be a human sacrifice. Sucks to be me, but you all should go - if you can get a ticket.).

    Like I mentioned elsethread, you want the Vikes to win at Montana State, so that the whole Big Sky Conference will fight it out right (t)here in the Rose City, with a bid to the Dance at stake. I'm at THAT, for sure, and I have no problem buying those tickets myself.

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    Frank said.... 'The same with the "nachos" were expecting melted cave-aged gruyere?' Nah, not gruyere... just warm.

    Also, Frank asked... 'Who took the "entertainment" tax write-off for your tickets, Kari?'

    Nobody, I think. They were donated to a charity that a friend of mine works for - who called me to offer them up.

    In general, though, I agree with your point - the tix are too pricey to allow the real fans close to the action, while the best seats are bought up by corporate folks who sometimes can't even find a receptionist to take 'em for free.

    Let's put the fans up close.

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    Check that. My friend indeed works for a charity, but they weren't donated to her group. Rather, they were donated by a season-ticket holder to his nephew - who invited her, and then me, along. No tax break, at all.

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    Sorry to take this off the Blazers a-gain, but PSU won in Bozeman, so it's on, right here: Big Sky Tournament. I think it'll be the MC.

  • bill deiz (unverified)

    Best idea from Kari: Let's get the real fans closer to the action. How about a "fanzone" near court level behind the baskets at either end...with attractively priced tickets? You'd have to wear something black or red to sit in the section...(Blazers' colors)...or a Blazer jersey or a hat.

    Maybe I'll suggest this to the Trailblazers?

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    Bill "Fanzone" sounds an awful lot like "Izzone" at my much beloved Berslin Center where Michigan State beat down Wis. last night. That's right Mr. Alworth BEAT DOWN the Badgers.

    I think A "Blazone" is a great idea. I love watching MSU games and seeing Fans clad in Green and White jumping up and down and sign our magnificent fight song: On the banks of the red cedar...

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