Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Random Observation From A Trail Blazer Game

I had planned on my next blog being about the phenomenon that is The Final Countdown by Europe. I fail to understand how such a cheesetacular supposed metal song has such a long shelf life after all these year. Europe was a terrible hair metal band and the rest of the album is horrible, but when you hear the opening instrumental bars, I rarely see it fail to cause people to hum or sing along. But I digress, because while I'd like to give this full attention, I was pleasantly amused, irritated and entertained by tonight's Trail Blazer game versus the Golden State Warriors.

The Trail Blazers won the game 109 to 91, but that was one of many details of tonight's game, as girl and I decided to spontaneously attend the final home game for a while.

  • We made it into the arena at 6:05 after picking up our tickets at Will Call. It never ceases to amaze me that the line for the toilets near Will Call is longer than the actual ticket pick up line, but people get confused just the same as to what line goes where. I suppose the picture of a toilet next to the restroom door isn't clear enough.
  • We immediately headed to Subway for the best $9 sandwich in the place, not to be confused with the $9 sandwich from the 76 Deli which you can only qualify as a sandwich because it has bread and a piece of lettuce. The gal in front of us had a full glass of wine while waiting to order, and by the time she made it to the front, the wine was just about gone. Unfortunately, that was only about 5 minutes that had passed. I mean, I like my booze, but not that much.
  • I normally don't sit in the lower bowl for Trail Blazer games, so it's nice to change it up a bit. The view of the court is better, you get the noise makers which can be fun or annoying, and there's plenty of concessionaires about. What isn't very good is that the bathrooms are smaller, and for whatever reason, in terrible shape most of the time. I suppose it's hard keeping up with the cleanliness when 20,000 people show up for a game, but tonight I was horrified at the mess in there. girl said the ladies' restroom was in about the same shape.
  • Just before the tip off, a lady was going to her seat in section 117 with a large drink and nachos. She was welcomed to the section by an usher, who was then asked to escort her nachos to her seat with her. She had an open hand, but apparently, the cheese needed supervision. She and the nachos made it down to the seat, but then she proceeded to ask the usher to put them on the seat next to her. He politely pointed out that a person might actually be sitting here at some point, but complied with the request. She left the nachos alone for at least 5 minutes, and girl and I soon became fascinated with which person would displace the nachos. At tip off, the food still had one of the best seats in the house, although she ate a few chips. About 15 minutes into the game, it appeared a nacho disaster occurred because she scurried to clean up something with a drink tray, and I'm thinking what poor sap is going to have to sit next to this mess. Thankfully, the seat went unclaimed.
  • I like kids a lot, but there was a young lad that I was extremely disappointed in tonight, as he decided that Blaze, the team mascot, needed to be tortured for the night. During the first quarter as Blaze walked by his seat, the kid reached out and grabbed at his ear a few times. Blaze quickly exited without incident, but the real travesty was in the fourth quarter while Blaze was leading the crowd in cheers, the kid left his seat and proceeded to grab Blaze's tail and try to pull on it hard. Not once, not twice but three times. The kid's parents, in a show of complete awareness of their kid's action, encouraged the kid to torment the mascot. While I wasn't close enough to stop the action, I'm disappointed that any parent would find messing with a mascot that was only trying to do his job funny, and encourage their child to do more damage. The final straw was watching the same kid collect 20 or so noise makers for the road. I hope the parents get kept up all night.
  • I did have respect for Don Nelson as a coach, as his teams usually play hard and don't play dirty. But that was until Monta Ellis "accidentally" hit Steve Blake from behind, causing him to leave the game with a calf injury. They may claim incidental contact, but Blake was turned toward our basket toward the top of the key and Ellis could have safely went around Blake to get into the play or grab the rebound, but instead he went through Blake and close to his knee from behind. Way to show some class while your team is getting drilled by 20.
  • Although we won, played well for some stretches and won by 18, we never completely knocked Golden State out to the point where they conceded, even though they got no closer than 8 points to us all game. I know this team is a playoff contender and will make some noise in the postseason, but sometimes the youngness of the team worries me. When we have a chance to bury a team, we don't always take it to the next level. I'm sure that Nate will talk with the team about that later tonight.
  • Chalupah coupons are great, but I personally hate when it gets to 98 or so points and the chalupah chants start. I did love being able to chant "you only stand for t-shirts" during the free t-shirt launch, which they advertised free stuff at least 3 or 4 times before things went flying into the crowd. Apparently repetition is important in advertising.
Overall, we are 22 and 13, and I look forward to my next game on the 30th, when we are back from our long road trip with at least 5 of 7 wins. You heard it here first, folks. I believe this team is for real, and right now, nobody outside of true Trail Blazer fans really understand what's happening here. Let them keep underestimating us, and we'll just keep on winning.


Dave said...

Oh man, I have to disagree with you; Anything that tortures "Blaze" is a good thing, even if it's a sign of future juvenile delinquency.

But anyway, I was at the game too; what continues to amaze me is how every night it's someone else on the team who scores bunches of points when we can most use them, not to mention the hustle rebounds, steals, blocks. And then we know every 4th quarter Travis will come in and score 6-10 points to help seal the deal.

And this is the best passing Blazer team I've seen since the 90s.

steeplechase3k said...

I have to agree with Dave, harrasment of any mascot (other than Timber Jim) is not that big of a deal to me, it comes with the teritory.

This Blazers team IS for real. They are going open some eyes on this brutal road trip, and make the media pay more attention.

3rd youngest team in NBA HISTORY!

GK said...

Yes, best passing team and one that cares about each other big time. I read my post and realized that I downplayed the Blaze/kid interaction a bit. The tail pulling was an attempt by the kid to spin Blaze around by his tail not once, not twice but three times, sort of like throwing a hammer in track. I added a postscript to today's ramblings.