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Bust-a-Bucket: The Trailblazers’ All-Portlandian Team

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Portland loves its Trailblazers — sometimes too much, if you believe Bill Simmons. Until Major League Soccer came along in 2009, NBA basketball was the only pro-game in town, and despite the vociferous dedication of the Timbers Army, it’s going to take many more years of attrition for the team to unseat the Blazers as Rose City’s favorite hard-luck underdogs. “Don’t Stop Believin'” is a cliche sports anthem, but it truly applies to Blazer fans: Through all the injuries, disappointing draft picks, Game 7 meltdowns, injuries, questionable general manager firings and even more injuries, the Rip City faithful have never stopped believing that every season will be the one in which the team seizes the spirit of 1977 — the year the franchise won its only championship — and brings home another title (well, except for during the Jailblazers Era, perhaps).

Although Portland considers everyone who’s ever donned a red, white and black jersey an adopted son (with the possible exception of Bonzi Wells), there are certain players who, for one reason or another, seem to scream “Portland” more than others. With the Blazers currently riding high on a 2-0 start to the new NBA season, we asked comedian, “Portlandia” guest star (you might remember him as “Guy Who Dies in Bathtub”) and Blazers fanatic Ian Karmel to draft a starting five of the most Portlandian Trailblazers of all-time. Would this team win a championship? That’s debatable. But if it did, there’s no doubt its victory celebration would include Voodoo Doughnuts and gallons upon gallons of Pabst Blue Ribbon.

Point Guard: Sebastian Telfair
Years with the Blazers: 2004-2006
Height: 6′
Weight: 165
Career Points Per Game: 7.8
What makes him Portlandian: Until he moved to Portland, he’d only lived in Brooklyn. He was part of a documentary that won some awards at Tribeca. That’s some real Portlandian business, but it’s that time he took a handgun on a plane — I’m assuming as a tribute to Portland-based plane hijacker DB Cooper — that really seals his spot at point guard. DB Cooper, mad vintage.

Shooting Guard: Brandon Roy
Years with the Blazers: 2006-2011
Height: 6’6″
Weight:
229
Career Points Per Game: 19
What makes him Portlandian: Where young people go to retire.

Small Forward: Jerome Kersey
Years with the Blazers: 1984-1995
Height: 6’7″
Weight: 215
Career Points Per Game: 10.3
What makes him Portlandian: Jerome Kersey is a quiet, decent, hardworking man from Skipwith, Virginia. After his basketball career, he worked in the mortgage industry and as an auto wholesaler. Yes, it took him 26 years to graduate from college, but it seems there isn’t really anything that Portlandian about Jerome Kersey. It’s not like he ever cut an EP while wearing a snap-back hat and a two-tone windbreaker. OH-MUH-GAWSH.

Power Forward: Channing Frye
Years with the Blazers:
2007-2009
Height: 6’11”
Weight: 248
Career Points Per Game: 9.5
What makes him Portlandian: Though his time with the team may have been short, Frye is arguably the most Portlandian of Blazers. He has a Tumblr. He uses it to post about trivia nights, coffee and Portugal. The Man. If you press the button on his Reebok Pumps he turns into a food cart. There’s a decent chance this guy will tear off his warm-ups to enter a game one day, and his legs will be covered in flyers for a Dan Deacon concert at the Doug Fir.

(UPDATE: Channing Frye responds to the honor of being included on the All-Portlandian Team: “It took me five years, but my enthusiasm and persistence for the tastiest food carts, the coldest beers (locally brewed, of course) and for anything ‘Portlandish’ has finally paid off. Thanks to all my friends who made my jeans a little tighter, my flannels a little less mainstream, and to all the people that have seen me day-in and day-out at Club Sport in Tualatin. I did it all for this one moment.”)

Center: Bill Walton
Years with the Blazers: 1974-1978
Height: 6’11”
Weight: 210
Career Points Per Game: 13.3
What makes him Portlandian: Dopey white guy from California moves to Portland, rides bike to work, wears a basketball jersey from the ’70s and a sweaty headband all the time: Bill Walton, or the guy who gets all passive-aggressive about your decision to use a debit card at his coffee shop? Both, y’all. Both.

Coach: Dr. Jack Ramsay
Years with the Blazers: 1976-1985
Overall Win-Loss Record: 864-783
What makes him Portlandian: Exhibit A. Exhibit B: see Exhibit A.

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Bro and Tell

BFFs And Night Court For Sports

Bromance and Comeuppance On Two New Comedy Crib Series

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“Silicon Valley meets Girls meets black male educators with lots of unrealized potential.”

That’s how Carl Foreman Jr. and Anthony Gaskins categorize their new series Frank and Lamar which joins Joe Schiappa’s Sport Court in the latest wave of new series available now on IFC’s Comedy Crib. To better acquaint you with the newbies, we went right to the creators for their candid POVs. And they did not disappoint. Here are snippets of their interviews:

Frank and Lamar

via GIPHY

IFC: How would you describe Frank and Lamar to a fancy network executive you met in an elevator?
Carl: Best bros from college live and work together teaching at a fancy Manhattan private school, valiantly trying to transition into a more mature phase of personal and professional life while clinging to their boyish ways.

IFC: And to a friend of a friend you met in a bar?
Carl: The same way, slightly less coherent.

Anthony: I’d probably speak about it with much louder volume, due to the bar which would probably be playing the new Kendrick Lamar album. I might also include additional jokes about Carl, or unrelated political tangents.

Carl: He really delights in randomly slandering me for no reason. I get him back though. Our rapport on the page, screen, and in real life, comes out of a lot of that back and forth.

IFC: In what way is Frank and Lamar a poignant series for this moment in time?
Carl: It tells a story I feel most people aren’t familiar with, having young black males teach in a very affluent white world, while never making it expressly about that either. Then in tackling their personal lives, we see these three-dimensional guys navigate a pivotal moment in time from a perspective I feel mainstream audiences tend not to see portrayed.

Anthony: I feel like Frank and Lamar continues to push the envelope within the genre by presenting interesting and non stereotypical content about people of color. The fact that this show brought together so many talented creative people, from the cast and crew to the producers, who believe in the project, makes the work that much more intentional and truthful. I also think it’s pretty incredible that we got to employ many of our friends!

Sport Court

Sport Court gavel

IFC: How would you describe Sport Court to a fancy network executive you met in an elevator?
Joe: SPORT COURT follows Judge David Linda, a circuit court judge assigned to handle an ad hoc courtroom put together to prosecute rowdy fan behavior in the basement of the Hartford Ultradome. Think an updated Night Court.

IFC: How would you describe Sport Court to drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?
Joe: Remember when you put those firecrackers down that guy’s pants at the baseball game? It’s about a judge who works in a court in the stadium that puts you in jail right then and there. I know, you actually did spend the night in jail, but imagine you went to court right that second and didn’t have to get your brother to take off work from GameStop to take you to your hearing.

IFC: Is there a method to your madness when coming up with sports fan faux pas?
Joe: I just think of the worst things that would ruin a sporting event for everyone. Peeing in the slushy machine in open view of a crowd seemed like a good one.

IFC: Honestly now, how many of the fan transgressions are things you’ve done or thought about doing?
Joe: I’ve thought about ripping out a whole row of chairs at a theater or stadium, so I would have my own private space. I like to think of that really whenever I have to sit crammed next to lots of people. Imagine the leg room!

Check out the full seasons of Frank and Lamar and Sport Court now on IFC’s Comedy Crib.

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Millennial Wisdom

Charles Speaks For Us All

Get to know Charles, the social media whiz of Brockmire.

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He may be an unlikely radio producer Brockmire, but Charles is #1 when it comes to delivering quips that tie a nice little bow on the absurdity of any given situation.

Charles also perfectly captures the jaded outlook of Millennials. Or at least Millennials as mythologized by marketers and news idiots. You know who you are.

Played superbly by Tyrel Jackson Williams, Charles’s quippy nuggets target just about any subject matter, from entry-level jobs in social media (“I plan on getting some experience here, then moving to New York to finally start my life.”) to the ramifications of fictional celebrity hookups (“Drake and Taylor Swift are dating! Albums y’all!”). But where he really nails the whole Millennial POV thing is when he comments on America’s second favorite past-time after type II diabetes: baseball.

Here are a few pearls.

On Baseball’s Lasting Cultural Relevance

“Baseball’s one of those old-timey things you don’t need anymore. Like cursive. Or email.”

On The Dramatic Value Of Double-Headers

“The only thing dumber than playing two boring-ass baseball games in one day is putting a two-hour delay between the boring-ass games.”

On Sartorial Tradition

“Is dressing badly just a thing for baseball, because that would explain his jacket.”

On Baseball, In A Nutshell

“Baseball is a f-cked up sport, and I want you to know it.”


Learn more about Charles in the behind-the-scenes video below.

And if you were born before the late ’80s and want to know what the kids think about Baseball, watch Brockmire Wednesdays at 10P on IFC.

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Crown Jules

Amanda Peet FTW on Brockmire

Amanda Peet brings it on Brockmire Wednesday at 10P on IFC.

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GIFS via Giphy

On Brockmire, Jules is the unexpected yin to Jim Brockmire’s yang. Which is saying a lot, because Brockmire’s yang is way out there. Played by Amanda Peet, Jules is hard-drinking, truth-spewing, baseball-loving…everything Brockmire is, and perhaps what he never expected to encounter in another human.

“We’re the same level of functional alcoholic.”


But Jules takes that commonality and transforms it into something special: a new beginning. A new beginning for failing minor league baseball team “The Frackers”, who suddenly about-face into a winning streak; and a new beginning for Brockmire, whose life gets a jumpstart when Jules lures him back to baseball. As for herself, her unexpected connection with Brockmire gives her own life a surprising and much needed goose.

“You’re a Goddamn Disaster and you’re starting To look good to me.”

This palpable dynamic adds depth and complexity to the narrative and pushes the series far beyond expected comedy. See for yourself in this behind-the-scenes video (and brace yourself for a unforgettable description of Brockmire’s genitals)…

Want more about Amanda Peet? She’s all over the place, and has even penned a recent self-reflective piece in the New York Times.

And of course you can watch the Jim-Jules relationship hysterically unfold in new episodes of Brockmire, every Wednesday at 10PM on IFC.

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