Snips and clips from the Phoenix camp, plus:
- Wayne Gretzky on the nature of superstardom
- Taking a look at trailblazers.tv
- Haiku Game Review
- Fried Rice
- Blazers/Suns Recap
- Popcorn Machine + TBJ
by Alex Laugan, Bright Side of the Sun (SBN)
Forget the reffing. Forget how much you're sick of the Blazers fighting and shoving the Phoenix Suns and ultimately getting the benefit of the calls.
Forget how many bruises Nash is going to have tomorrow (oh yeah, its a back-to-back tomorrow!). Forget that the Phoenix Suns made Aldridge and Roy look good, despite neither of them playing that well on their own.
It's tough for the Phoenix Suns to win when 3 of their rotation players fail to show up to the game. They lost 106-99.
Hakim Warrick forgot his aggressiveness in Phoenix. He had one — one! — pick-n-roll finish in the entire game. In fact, he had more airballs than baskets.
Jason Richardson failed to show up for this game. He collected more fouls than baskets. His head just was not in this game, except for a 1-minute stretch to start the third quarter where he had 4 of his 6 points. Ugh. In fact, his terrible play allowed the Blazers to put a big, physical guy on Nash during key stretches which slowed the offense to a halt.
But the capper, the biggest reason the Suns lost this game: Goran Dragic. * * *
posted by Matt131 to Planet Orange message board
MAN they would NOT miss a stinking free throw...
Disappointing loss right there....
Keep your heads up, Suns, we WILL rise from the ashes!
We shot a better percentage, had the same amount of rebeounds, but loss this game on free throws and turnovers...
And you know what? Those areas are fixable.
posted by swe suns to RealGM Suns message board
Nash lost the game, again.
Great, same freaking crap the last time we were here.
STUPID COACHING STAFF playing Nash this hard. Again this game is on Gentry, outscored by 14 in the 4th.
posted by Harshey1388 to RealGM Suns message board
The whistles were killing us at crucial times, took us out of the flow and 30-31 from the Free Throw line definitely hurt us.
Par for the Course
posted by JMac1 to RealGM Suns message board
That is what I expect from Portland refs, hell, the fans boo EVERYTHING!!!! It is hard to watch anyone play there because the fan beg and whine about every call and non call. They work on the refs for the whole game.
We got 2 games at home against them, that will put us 3 games ahead of them in the standings. I don't even sweat losing in LA, Utah and Por; those are the worst officiating stadiums in the NBA!!
by Mike Schmitz, Valley of the Suns (TrueHoop)
The Portland Trail Blazers have a way of getting putting the clamps on the Phoenix Suns late in games.
The last time the Suns squared off against the Blazers in their season opener, they took a 81-75 lead into the fourth quarter.
But the Suns crumbled down the stretch scoring only 11 points in the final 12 minutes as Portland closed the game in style with an 18-1 run en route to a 106-102 victory.
Tuesday night was Deja Vu for Phoenix, as the Suns once again built a six-point lead (85-79) heading into the fourth and final period, but couldn't find the basket late in the game on their way to a 106-99 loss to a Portland team that lost six of its last games heading into the contest.
The Suns turned the ball over nine times (19 team turnovers in total) in the fourth quarter as the offense stalled in the half court, allowing the Blazers to rattle off 37 fourth-quarter points on the other end. * * *
by Paul Coro, Arizona Republic
Like grinding out sausage, playing the Portland way was not pretty Tuesday night for the Suns.
The Suns found their way to one fast-break score and reiterated that double-digit point totals are hazardous to their health. The Suns have lost all five games in which they failed to reach 100, losing the latest 106-99 to the Trail Blazers at Rose Garden.
Phoenix was denied its first four-game win streak of the season because it was denied much of what it wanted to do by a Portland team missing suspended guard Andre Miller. The Suns shot 51 percent but got up only five 3-pointers in the first half and committed 19 turnovers despite fewer possessions than usual. * * *
by Paul Coro, Arizona Republic Orange Slices blog
Everyone had a role and knew it last season. They came in twos, like Noah's Ark. Steve Nash and Goran Dragic. Jason Richardson and Leandro Barbosa. Grant Hill and Jared Dudley. Amar'e Stoudemire and Louis Amundson. Robin Lopez and Channing Frye.
Everybody got on board, helping Coach Alvin Gentry pull off a 10-man rotation that can be difficult in the NBA because of how minutes are distributed.
He again asked to make it work this season but with a flawed roster. Half of the rotation players are wing players. Hedo Turkoglu and Hakim Warrick have been seeing fewer mintues when their low energy does not warrant more. Meanwhile, Earl Clark can't hardly get playing time even though he has shown tremendous strides in professionalism and effort in practices.
It was only one game Tuesday night in Portland but the 106-99 loss was a reality check that the Suns. They are 21 games into the season and still searching for themselves, especially with the reserve unit. Gentry tried another new look, starting Tuesday's fourth quarter with four reserves, sitting Josh Childress for a half for the first time and leaving in Grant Hill. After Dudley closed the third with the final five points and made a 3-pointer to start the fourth, the Suns led by nine. Moments later, a 67-second span had a Blazers 8-1 run and Dragic was being benched for it. * * *
It looks like a neutron bomb wiped out all the Suns bloggers: Deep Purple (Fanster), Sun-and-Gun (Fansided), Suns Spot (Fanball), Suns Zoo (Rant Sports), and Suns Stuff't (Bloguin) are all bleeding from the ears, as are the independents Suns Can Win and Suns Gab. Weird.
The Bottom Line:
1. So how much did you pay those refs, Portland... Nobody on your team can stop Jason Richardson but the refs could...
2. What the hell was Alvin Gentry thinking playing Steve Nash 40 minutes on the front end of a back-to-back? Is he going for a double loss or something?
3. This was an aggravating loss, but we're not worried.
The Great Gretzky on Superstars
I dunno how many of you have seen Cigar Aficionado magazine before... CA is a big, fat glossy lifestyle mag dedicated to the sundry vices and pastimes of the Big Bourgeoisie, not entirely dissimilar to Hugh Hefner's more famous girlie mag. Both magazines feature immaculate airbrushed graphics of their primary fetishized commodities — corojo-wrapped coronas or plastic-titted bleached blondes, respectively — and both occasionally have featured some of the most intelligent and articulate interviews to see print.
Anyway, I was spinning through the March 1997 issue of Cigar Aficionado at bedtime last night and decided to give some time to the cover story, a very extensive piece on the Michael Jordan of the National Hockey League, Wayne Gretzky. At the time Gretzky was just beginning the final chapter of his legendary career as a member of the New York Rangers, making one last run at glory next to his old Edmonton Oilers teammate, Mark Messier.
Journalist Ken Shouler plied Gretzky with a box of Cubans and got one of the definitive interviews ever given by "The Great One." As the sunset of his career clearly approached, Gretzky reflected upon matters which transcended the sport of hockey — the nature of superstardom in general.
Gretzky revealed that he had a lifelong fanatical love of the game from an early age. When he was six, Gretzky remembered, "I would sit down in front of the TV with a pen and watch the puck on TV and I'd follow the puck [tracing it on the paper] for the whole period.... And my dad would say, 'What are you doin'?' And I said, 'I'm following the puck.' I just wanted to see who's got the puck more, where all the play is, where all the action is. At the end of the period, you would see heavy lines in one certain area, or maybe on one end if a team is dominating."
"I don't know why I did it," Gretzky later observed.
Wayne's father knew that this sort of intensity was the stuff of champions, he realized that his son would be become brilliant before the kid did himself.
"I don't know why or how you have this passion, but if you don't lose your love for the game, you'll be something special," he told Wayne. "You have this passion for the game and you'll go far."
That he did.
That's the first part of true superstardom, I think — an incredible passion for the sport from youth, not equalled by one's peers. Gretzky, himself a pro basketball fan, translated the idea into NBA terms:
"You know what the biggest gifts of the great athletes are?" he asked rhetorically. "Their love and passion for the game. If you said to Larry Bird, 'You know what, Larry, you gotta go out and shoot baskets and practice for two hours,' you know what he'd say? 'Take a flyin' hike!' But if you say to him, 'Are you going to go to a movie tonight, are you going to go out with the guys for dinner?' 'No, I'm going to shoot baskets,' he might say. That was his passion. He didn't think he was practicing."
Speaking of himself, Gretzky recalled, "I never one time got up on a Saturday morning and said, 'I gotta go practice for eight hours today.' If I would have thought that, I would never have gone on the ice! My friends would say, ' We're going to watch a game or my dad is taking us here, what are you going to do?' 'I'm gonna go skate,' I'd say. I just loved it. I got up in the morning and went and did it. That's what God gave [great athletes], that's their gift. That's the extra special thing they have, the extra passion and the want to excel."
Summarized slightly differently: true superstars have a passion for the game which drives them to practice when their peers are busy having a life.
Gretzky brings up a third element of superstardom, in addition to passion and practice: fear of failure.
"I know myself that I have this fear that drives me," Gretzky noted. "I don't want to embarrass myself. You don't want to not be successful. And I'd be willing to bet that a lot of the great athletes have that. It's a fear — 'I'm gonna be ready, I've gotta be ready.'"
Finally comes the last component, the physical component. The most intense and driven klutz is, after all, still a klutz. One must have a certain set of physical tools — coordination, strength, speed, vision — to be honed and refined. But this is sometimes exaggerated: plenty of superstars are unexceptional physical specimens, not the least of which was the rather diminutive Gretzky. But still: superstars must be able to shape their natural physical gifts into exceptional renderings of athletic excellence.
I can't really say whether or not Brandon Roy is a true superstar. I've got my grave doubts, but the book's not yet fully written on him. Or Wesley Matthews, for that matter... Does this young star on the rise have a truly exceptional internal fire? We can't say yet. However, if it takes a true superstar or two to win an NBA Championship, I think that Wayne Gretzky points us towards some of the things for which we should all be looking: overriding passion for the sport, unceasing drive for perfection, unwillingness to fail...
P.S. An aside for those of you who don't watch hockey or never saw Gretzky in his prime... When the physical assets of the 4 time World Champion began to wane — Gretzky scored over 50 goals per year in 9 of 10 seasons from 1979-80 to 1988-89 before entering a decade of declining scoring prowess — The Great One reinvented himself as the indisputable best passer in the game. Gretzky remained an extraordinarily valuable asset to the teams of which he was a part, even after the quick burst which lead to his murderously effective breaks on the goal had left him and his lightning-fast reflexes had dulled.
If Brandon Roy has indeed lost the quick first step due to his knees giving out, there remains for him the possibility of perfecting other aspects of his game. See, for example: Jason Kidd learning to shoot the three ball at an advanced age. If Roy is a true superstar, he'll probably get there.
On the other hand, take the case of Bobby Orr — believed by most experts to be the greatest Defenseman in the history of the NHL. Orr had to retire at age 27 due to chronic knee issues.
Brandon Roy is 26.
* * *
Taking a Long Look at Trail Blazers TV
Regular viewers of the Blazer game telecasts on Comcast Sports Net have no doubt observed that instead of pushing an insipid Blazer Dancer blog, Paul Allen's marketing machine is now pushing a venture called "Trail Blazers TV." Launched on November 9, 2010, Trail Blazers TV (which I will henceforth call "TBTV" because I am lazy) has been said to be a revolutionary new development, the first of its kind by an NBA franchise, featuring streaming live programming and archived videos. We seem to be talking about an internet-based television network dedicated to the Portland Trail Blazers here, folks.
The Blazers have a "Director of Interactive," did you know that? His name is Dan Harbison and this is what he had to say in a statement made at the launch of TBTV: "This is a great step for us in furthering our digital influence. This network allows us to break away from the traditional one-on-one mold of a user and a computer and allows fans to interact while watching video content together."
After having given them about a month to work out the inevitable kinks coming with any new project, I've decided to hop on over and take a look at things for the first time, recounting my experiences here.
So how do you find this thing? I typed "http://www.trailblazers.tv" into my browser and it redirected fine — a nice start. The first demerit came quickly, however, with an auto-playing video of Adam Bjaranson giving the daily update whether one wants to hear it or not. Just because one CAN make a video play automatically upon the opening of a page does not mean that one SHOULD make a video play automatically. As usual, things were VERY VERY LOUD until I found the pause button to bring Tony Luftman's big brother's wordy discourse to a merciful halt. Annoying.
Bjaranson's 90 second video commentary of short newsy notes could have been presented in written form in with about 15 seconds worth of reading. Gol-darn though, written words just aren't as compelling as the same info presented by a goofus in a track suit and a Blazer cap... /s
The "LIGHTS ON - LIGHTS OFF" button which suppresses the background hoopty-hoopty while the video plays is a nice touch. The default to LIGHTS OFF is a correct call, methinks, but if you want something colorful on the screen other than a dimly-lit anchorman, knock yourself out.
The page detailing the current viewing habits of registered "members" — "Bill Smith is watching JUST CASEY along with 4 others" — is creepy and Big Brotherish, which I'm sure adds to its appeal for Microsoft Man Paul Allen.
I popped in in "Chalk Talk" — a pregame regular feature hosted by Casey Holdahl — today featuring a guest appearance by our hero, Mike Rice. There was much discussion of the Andre Miller suspension. Ricey thinks that Nate was secretly quite happy about the welt-inducing message sent by Andre Miller in laying out Blake Griffin. "The only way he could have hit him harder is if he used a hammer." Very entertaining, great content. Good to see Casey working hard and Ricey spreading the seeds of knowledge and/or the fertilizer that helps make the little seeds grow.
On Channing Frye: "Whatever they're paying him is not enough — he's perfect for Steve Nash." HAW HAW!!! Rice is a funny, funny man.
Technical complaint: the video window is not free-floating, it pops up in the middle of the screen and there it sits unless you close it. It would be nice to be able to slide a small video window over to a far corner of the screen so that one could go about one's day pretending to work or actually working with the video fully visible and the rest of the screen useable, eh?
The "Live Chat" running next to the video allows viewers to ask questions of the TBTV personalities in real time, which is fascinating. To my surprise, Casey answered a flippant question about his C sweatshirt that I floated just to test the feature. Then in reply to Casey's remark that Pryz shouldn't start even if back to full strength, I submitted a legitimate query, which rapidly made air:
[Comment From timbo]
Casey & Rice: If you don't start Joel, does that mean you play him with a running second unit with less scoring punch than the starters? Doesn't it make better sense to put him out there with the methodical Brandon Roy and Andre Miller?
Rice went "Minute Rice" on that one, taking 65 seconds and using 1200 words not to answer it. Very entertaining, indeed.
Quote of the Day: Rice to Casey: "I'm Andre Miller of the broadcasters — I'll smack you!" Ha ha!
Testing out the archives feature, I first tried to see what was up for "Trail Blazers Courtside." There was only one episode returned in the search, the Nov. 29 episode. This disconcertingly started with several minutes of raw, unedited feed before the show began. Having the two hour show on demand is valuable, although a full archive of telecasts would be helpful.
After learning elsewhere that the Dec. 6 "Courtside" was in the archives I subsequently found the misplaced file by backing out and searching with a different method. The search engine needs work, in other words. As for the show itself, it merits mentioning that the commercial breaks — featuring minutes of dead air — need to be edited out in the worst way. That's as easy as snip-snip. Hell, run an ad or two — it's better than 2 minutes of silence.
I then checked out the current installment of Adam Bjaranson's daily program, "Up and Adam." Blazer Prez Larry Miller made an appearance on Bjaranson's show. Production values aren't great, the sound a little bit weak in particular, but the content of the program was excellent. Advertising was minimal, with a short ad for hamburgers up front.
My initial reaction to Adam's show was jolting: "Oh, crap, now I've gotta rewrite all my Tony Luftman jokes!" Bjaranson is a capable interviewer who is in his own element as a talk show host; Luftman would have difficulty holding his own making small talk at a fraternity party mixer... Don't confuse the two, no matter how great the superficial resemblance during 15 second teasers for the Trail Blazer halftime show. Regular viewing of the "Up and Adam" program by Blazer fans is strongly encouraged.
It's a lot of good stuff, it's free, what's not to like? I had no expectation of quality, but found a great deal of effort to provide compelling content. Can they keep up the pace? I have no idea — but it's a great start on a great concept. All Blazers, all the time, and worthy of your investigation. I'm giving 'em an A+, and I'm an old grouchy dude...
* * *
Young rebuilding team
Big leads choked away to vets
That was years ago
Here's the staging area for skewed takes on the straight world voiced by Uncle Mike...
MB and Rice disagree on whether a flattened Wesley Matthews on the break was a foul...
MB (incredulously): "Are you saying that wasn't a foul? When the defender steps out and makes you fall?
Rice (correctly): "Well he didn't reach out and trip him, he stepped on him."
MB: "That's the craziest thing I've ever heard — and that's saying something!"
Mike Rice is not a Hedo fan...
MB: "Hedo Turkoglu, still hearing boos in Portland — not as much as opening night..."
Rice: "I cheer him for not coming..."
Rice has his favorite refs. Others not... Patty is called for a controversial block...
"The next time Benny Adams blows his whistle for the Blazers it will be the first time in about the last six games."
Rice is most scornful that Channing Frye objects over a clear foul...
Rice: "Look at that — he's being a bully!"
MB: "The first time in Channing's life that he's ever been called a bully!"
Suns 99 at Blazers 106.
December 7, 2010.
Blazers' record is now 10-11, the Suns are 11-10.
1. An open trey by Wesley to open, always good to start with a lead. Point Guard? We don't need no stinking Point Guard! Nic Batum gets the start in lieu of the suspended Andre Miller. We'll see how that works... Whistle, whistle, whistle, whistle — David Stern seems to have taken the refs off salary and put them on commission. The teams opened the game playing evenly, two squads of semi-competent jumpshooters. At the 7:30 mark Nic picked up his second foul and in came Patty Mills. Squeezably Soft Charmin Frye hit a couple open treys — his one marketable skill — a clear indicator that LMA wasn't getting back on D. There's an old Phil Jackson adage that "games aren't won or lost in the first quarter" and this one wasn't either. Roy was The Guy for Portland, with 9 points in the period, the same number Nash had for the Suns. At the break it was PDX 29, PHX 23, with the Suns' shooting percentage barely dipping under the 50% mark at the end.
2. The 2nd Quarter opened with Patty Mills and Rudy playing inspired basketball and Pryzzy mucking for rebounds like a stud. Jason Richardson picked up a third foul after only 7 minutes and had to go bye bye, which was enormously welcome news, since that dude can shoot. At 6:16 Nash checked back in and the game resumed, Portland holding a 9 point lead. Armon got a little burn and played some most impressive defense. He dished a sweet drive-and-drop pass to LMA and made a Bayless foul on the perimeter. There is absolutely still hope for the guy. Roy was flat in the quarter, but the Blazers managed to extend the lead to 12 points briefly. Once again, not one single Blazer fan on the globe was impressed by that. Seen before, maaaaaaan...
The Blazers went into their patented one-and-done long jumper mode. Ugh. Phoenix scored the ball low. In a competition between long shots and short shots, the latter will win every time, and you can quote me on that. Patty Mills fouled Charmin with 6.5 showing and the lead shrank some more, Nate calling a time out in between Frye's makes to set up a final play. That is, if two perimeter passes to a 20-foot LMA clanker can be called a "play." At the half it was PDX 51, PHX 47, with Phoenix on a 10-2 run...
Halftime Entertainment: The Clash "The English Civil War" (live, circa 1979)
3. Phoenix ran up 6 quick points to take the lead, with Portland's shooting drought at the end of the 2nd Quarter extending into the 3rd. For as much as Mike Barrett bitches about Portland fan negativism, he is absolutely one of the most Accentuate the Negative voices in the NBA, speaking as a League Pass guy who has heard them all. Hopefully he'll be able to spend Thursday's TNT game listening to a couple other people to see how they do it... Actually, listening to two weeks of Ralph and Smith call Clipper games would be beneficial for him. "Well, we're tied at 56, Blazers led by 12." No duh, done's done... Forget and move along, my friend...
Phoenix got their first fast break bucket at 5:40 of the 3rd Q, which is indicative of something. Portland looked flat but the teams played evenly, with Nic missing one open trey and jarrettjacking out of bounds on another possession... Pryzzy was in for the last 3 minutes and the Blazers went zone. Blazers missed jumpers and Phoenix didn't. PHX 75, PDX 69, with Phoenix outscoring Portland 28-18 in their Traditional Quarter of FAIL.
4. Final frame. Ho, hum, we've seen this before, eh? Portland came back well with a 10-1 run in the first part of the quarter, tying things up with 9:15 on the clock. Time out, Phoenix! MB predictably doesn't spend any time braying to viewers about just how far the Blazers were down just a few minutes ago. Basketball is a game of runs — a 12 point lead is 4 made treys. Stuff happens. The Clips went from +17 to -4 in about 6 minutes of the 4th Quarter last night, but Ralph didn't crap his pants...
Is Turkoglu one of the five worst contracts in the NBA? That sounds like a good article for me to write, eh? Note to self: write that one...
After spending a few quality minutes with Heidicat and pondering without typing, I have this to offer — Portland and Phoenix are about even teams, quality-wise. I don't think either one are Western Conference playoff teams in a just world. Who wins this one? Not sure that it matters. They say that the opposite of love isn't hate, it's apathy, and I'm feeling a lot of that. I'd rather be watching the Lakers right now but I'm still here. You're welcome.
Frye fouled out, amusingly, using the loose hand on Batum's face while driving for a jam. He was incredulous. Rice, approprately: "He still lives in Portland — we love him." Yes, we do. We're just happy he plays out his career elsewhere. When you're done, my man, come home so the kids can have 20 fun years listening to you as a broadcaster... You're gonna be money.
Nate went smallball at the end, as he likes to do. LMA came up with a nice rebound, but Brandon rendered it moot with a lame move in the lane. Nash missed, rebound Roy. Nic hit a trey at 1:35 and PDX was up 7 on a 9-0 run. Rudy fouled out at 1:15. Bad call by Benny Adams, maybe Ricey is on to something...
At 1 minute, Blazer ball up 6, Roy doing his thing but could not finish with the right hand. No matter, Phoenix failed on the offensive end. Bad situational pass for an LMA oop, bailed out by a foul call and it was an 8 point Portland lead at 42.9. Alvin Gentry called time out.
Phoenix trey and a quick foul of Roy. 98-93 with 38.6 showing. Brandon was money, hitting two for DAGGER.
Phoenix scored to narrow the lead to 5 and the Blazers called time. "This will take a long time," says Rice. Screw you, I wanna watch the Lakers... This one is over.
Shannon Brown hits twice from the FT line, stretching the Laker lead to 6 over the Whizz with just over 10 minutes remaining in the 4th. Okay, for you I'll switch back..
LMA hits two from the line, Nash given a freebie layup, LMA back to the line at 25.6... He drains two, running the Blazers' team total up to an thunderous 30-for-31 from the charity stripe, or some such. Then it was a fast 2 for Phoenix and a foul of Sweet Wesley, who potted two more for his 24 on the night. Hasta la vista, Suns.
Final Score: PORTLAND TRAIL BLAZERS 106, PHOENIX SUNS 99.
Ominous note: Phoenix shot 50.7% from the field on the night. Portland has a way of doing that, eh? Still — a nice win.
Wesley Matthews — game high for Portland with 24 points. Roy and LMA each with 20. That signing keeps looking better and better and better...
Let's take at this thang graphically, shall we?
Ya gotta click THIS-HERE LINK to see the swell graphs, that's the way these things work... Ready? Set??? GO!!!
Now here are a few observations about the Popcorn Machine material from me to you:
A. After a typical 3rd Quarter of failure, the Blazers dominated the 4th, putting up runs of 10-1 and 11-1 in the same period for the come from behind victory.
B. The big 16-2 Suns run at the end of the 2nd Quarter and the start of the 3rd was on the Blazers' starters almost exclusively.
C. Blazers' start Wesley Matthews had 11 points in the pressure-packed 4th Quarter and LMA had 10. Nic Batum chipped in 8. Brandon Roy had just 5. Has the torch been passed? And just how brilliant was that signing?
D. Rudy Fernandez was +12 in 22 and a half minutes of action. I have to think there was a relationship. I don't ever recall him fouling out before — he was definitely energized tonight.
E. You wanna know how badly Armon Johnson is in Nate's doghouse? He played less than 6 minutes on a night when Andre Miller was gone and the relatively untested Patty Mills was the only legit PG on the roster who was available. It wasn't like Armon played badly either — he had 3 assists in the limited time, which is a crazy rate per 36 minutes.
LINK for the NBA.com box score...
Finally, let's gather round for another installment of THE GREATEST THING IN THE WORLD, eh?
"No Worries, Mate..."
The Basketball Jones is a NBA blog and video/audio podcast, written and recorded five times a week by J.E. Skeets, Tas Melas, Jason Doyle and Matt Osten. Assume that there will be a couple Not Suitable For Work words used in any given episode.
Trail Blazers TV Article Credit: Suzanne Stevens, "Blazers Launch Trail Blazers TV," Portland Business Journal, Nov. 9, 2010.
Photo Credits: Wayne Gretzky: Found graphics from the early 1980s. Casey Holdahl: Nicked from Facebook. All images heavily tweaked in Photoshop by Tim Davenport.