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Sunday, April 22, 2007

Still around

The pro basketball playoffs have started, and watching them is a strange addiction. The Blazers are long since out of it, but having seen some of the playoff teams here in town as Blazer opponents during the year, I find it interesting to watch them go head-to-head with more serious competition in the championship tournament ordeal. (It runs about two months.)

I see several former Portland players on playoff teams this time around. Rasheed Wallace, one of the Rip City team's all-time head cases, holds court on the Detroit Pistons these days. Yesterday they beat the Orlando Magic in the first game of their series. "Ra" had a nice game, and he also taught the referees a thing or two with his brilliant commentary on their calls. Good for him.

Juan Dixon, who was part of last season's Blazer ugliness (largely through no fault of his own), has wound up on the Toronto Raptors, who lost their first game at home yesterday to the New Jersey Nets. The Nets, of course, hold a soft spot in my heart -- blood is thicker than water. Dixon played just 15 minutes, hitting two shots, including a three-pointer. He missed three others, and had a couple of turnovers.

On the Nets roster, believe it or not you still find Cliff Robinson, a throwback to the Blazers' Clyde Drexler heyday. Uncle Cliffy turned 40 years old his season, but he stills gets some playing time. For the season, he averaged 19 minutes a game in 50 games. He didn't get in the game yesterday, however. Today's trivia questions: (1) Which female Portland police officer did Cliffy punch outside a Northwest Portland nightclub in his early days here? (2) How did Cliffy get in trouble with paintball?

Remember Viktor Khryapa, the Russian forward who looked good as a rookie in Portland last year? He is riding the pines on the Chicago Bulls now, playing in fewer than half their games and only for a few minutes per game when he's put in there. His team looked quite strong as they beat the creaky old Miami Heat in Chicago yesterday. In that game, a talented Bulls swing man from Sudan, Luol Deng, tore the place up.

Bonzi Wells is still technically on the roster of the Houston Rockets, who scored a nice win at home over Utah in the last game of the night. But as we noted here last week, he quit the team recently and may very well have worn his last NBA uniform.

Speaking of ex-Blazer bad apples, did you hear the latest about Bassy Telfair? Locked up over his stupid gun again. You'd think he would have learned after his famous incident in Portland a year ago, but no. I knew this fellow was not quality people; we should be glad that he's some other city's problem now. Ex-Blazer Danny Ainge, running personnel for the abysmal Boston Celtics, bought that project. Thanks, Danny. Hey, do you need a power forward?

Four more playoff games are scheduled for today, and we'll report any other ex-Blazer sightings tonight. If I overlooked any former Blazers in yesterday's contests, I'm sure someone out there will let me know.

Comments (6)

(1) Which female Portland police officer did Cliffy punch outside a Northwest Portland nightclub in his early days here? (2) How did Cliffy get in trouble with paintball?

Rosie Sizer.

He was driving up Front Ave while smoking the Mary Jane. Qyntel without the dogs.

Bassy. Between the film, the shoe deal, and the #13 pick, his people did a tremendous sales job all around. I wonder why they could do all that but can't keep him out of trouble. I wonder if a year under Pitino would have changed anything for him.

Chris....with my pedant hat on , I seem to recall Uncle Cliffy was indeed arrested for smoking pot as you say, but didn't one of his posse (brother?) step in and graciously admit it was his pot not UC's which lead to the charges being dropped.

Regarding Telfair, I think it's only fair to Seb to say the Oregonian reported that Telfair and the boy with him didn't know anything about the gun that was found under a seat in Telfair's rig last week. (snigger)
I can imagine his g/f put it there while unloading shopping or cleaning, much like my wife might absentmindedly do.

Sports Illustrated (SI.com)are reporting this morning the Boston Celtics are going to kick Telfair off the team and his NBA career may well be at an end.

The best part of the Cliffy traffic stop was the fact that his passengers were pointing paintball guns at people as Cliffy drove by. Big joke, until they had real police revolvers pointed at their heads as they lay on the pavement on Front Street.

A few years back, Cliffy came out of nowhere to drop a 50 pt game on someone. It was surreal to the point where I checked to make sure there were no gas leaks in the house.

He's one of the top 20 all-time scorers, I believe.

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