Portland Trail Blazers broadcasting legend Bill Schonely has officially retired. The Blazers tweeted the news this morning with an accompanying article chronicling Schonely’s accolades and accomplishments. Schonely served as the franchise’s inaugural play-by-play radio voice in 1970, a role he filled for the better part of 30 years, interspersed with seasons as a television broadcaster. He served as official ambassador for the franchise after leaving the microphone behind, a role he’s filled past his 92nd birthday.
Upon the announcement of Schonely’s retirement, the Blazers tweeted:
“RIP CITY, BABY!” Bill Schonely has announced his retirement after over 50 years with the Blazers organization.Thank you for everything you have given to our organization & the city of Portland. We love you, Schonz! Enjoy retirement [heart emoji]
Blazers President of Business Operations Dewayne Hankins offered these comments:
“Bill has been a fixture of the Trail Blazers organization since its inception and will continue to be forever engrained in this city... said Dewayne Hankins, President of Business
“We thank Bill immensely for his 50+ years of hard work and everything he has given to our organization, the city of Portland and the entire NBA community.”
Schonely has been honored by both the Oregon Sports Hall of Fame and the NBA’s Naismith Memorial Hall of Fame.
In 2020, Blazer’s Edge listed Schonely as one of the top ten greatest franchise members in Trail Blazers history. In 2015 we dubbed him the single most influential Trail Blazers figure of all time.