Blazers-Warriors Game 5: Warriors Close It Out, by Chuck Strom

The Golden State Warriors ended their playoff series last night with a 125-121 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers. Though the Blazers won only one of the five games, the widespread consensus is that they gave the Warriors all they could handle. Game 5 was no different than most of the other games, with . . . → Read More: Blazers-Warriors Game 5: Warriors Close It Out, by Chuck Strom

Blazers-Warriors Game 4: He’s Baaaaaack! By Chuck Strom

The news that Stephen Curry would play in last night’s Game 4 between the Portland Trail Blazers and the Golden State Warriors seemed a significant but not earth-shaking development, and when I checked the first-half score and saw the Blazers up by ten, I figured the game was over and that Curry would need . . . → Read More: Blazers-Warriors Game 4: He’s Baaaaaack! By Chuck Strom

Blazers Torch the Warriors in Game 3, by Chuck Strom

In Game 3 of the NBA West Semifinals last night between the Portland Trail Blazers and the Golden State Warriors, the Blazers did to the Warriors what the Warriors have done to the NBA for two years. Every time the Warriors made a run at the Blazers in the second half, even closing the . . . → Read More: Blazers Torch the Warriors in Game 3, by Chuck Strom

The Smithsonian Has Nothing on This Place, by Chuck Strom

The Evergreen Aviation and Space Museum in McMinnville, OR, is about an hour off the beaten interstate track, but it’s well worth the trip. It is the home not only of Howard Hughes’s Spruce Goose, but also a remarkable collection of vintage airplanes and spacecraft, including V2 and Gemini Titan rockets. The Spruce Goose, . . . → Read More: The Smithsonian Has Nothing on This Place, by Chuck Strom

The Tallest View West Of The Mississippi, by Chuck Strom

The Columbia Sky Observatory in Seattle, WA offers the tallest view available to the public west of the Mississippi. It can be a little frustrating to negotiate the surrounding one-way streets to get there, but the panorama is well worth the effort and the $14 fee. The Columbia Observatory may not be as well-known . . . → Read More: The Tallest View West Of The Mississippi, by Chuck Strom

Blazers vs. Warriors, Game 2, by Chuck Strom

For the first three quarters of Game 2 of the NBA Western Semi-Finals, the Portland Trail Blazers did everything they could to defy conventional wisdom. They crashed the boards, made big shots and on defense forced the Golden State Warriors to work for their points, and at the beginning of the fourth quarter the . . . → Read More: Blazers vs. Warriors, Game 2, by Chuck Strom

Game 1 to the Warriors, by Chuck Strom

One should never judge a series by its first game, but with their 118-106 victory, the Dubs took care of business with a 20-point lead in the first quarter, never allowing the score to get close after that. Lillard and McCollum shot a combined 30% from the floor—they and the Blazers may have been . . . → Read More: Game 1 to the Warriors, by Chuck Strom

Portland Trail Blazers vs. Golden State Warriors: Round 2 of the NBA Playoffs, by Chuck Strom

When I saw the Portland Trail Blazers beat the Los Angeles Clippers back in November, I wrote at the time that the Blazers looked better than expected, while the Clippers seemed to have more than their share of issues. I would have never predicted, though, that the Blazers would not only make the NBA . . . → Read More: Portland Trail Blazers vs. Golden State Warriors: Round 2 of the NBA Playoffs, by Chuck Strom

April Baseball in San Francisco, by Chuck Strom

I once heard a fan at AT&T Park say that he liked pitching duels when watching baseball on television, but when he was at the park, he wanted to see runs scored. I understood his perspective; hits and baserunners are a lot more interesting from the upper deck than a continual succession of pitches . . . → Read More: April Baseball in San Francisco, by Chuck Strom

R.I.P. Garry Emmanuel Shandling, by Chuck Strom

Just saw that Garry Shandling passed away suddenly. I liked him. He made meta funny and accessible at once.

http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2016/03/24/471773637/actor-and-comedian-garry-shandling-dies-at-66

His appearance on Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee wasn’t that long ago:

http://comediansincarsgettingcoffee.com/garry-shandling-its-great-that-garry-shandling-is-still-alive

Note the title of the segment.

Replayed the episode. A lot of discussion of death, almost eerily so. At one . . . → Read More: R.I.P. Garry Emmanuel Shandling, by Chuck Strom

2016 Giants Fan Fest: The Future is Now, by Chuck Strom

Fan Fest

One person much on people’s minds at last Saturday’s San Francisco Giants Fan Fest wasn’t even in the house. For the first time since 2008, the Giants are beginning their season without one of the most iconic players in their history: Tim Lincecum. Questions on his status came up in several of . . . → Read More: 2016 Giants Fan Fest: The Future is Now, by Chuck Strom

Scenes From Super Bowl City: the NFL Descends Upon San Francisco, by Chuck Strom

Photo op

When the NFL comes to town for the Super Bowl, it is not just a visit: it is an occupation. In addition to the game itself, the NFL has taken possession of the Moscone Convention Center for the week for its NFL Experience, a theme park and autograph show that one can . . . → Read More: Scenes From Super Bowl City: the NFL Descends Upon San Francisco, by Chuck Strom

Blazers Dominated LeBron: What Was Up With That? by Chuck Strom

This article is an interesting update on the Blazers/Cavs game last December, suggesting that the LeBron and company may have scaled down their level of play on purpose, possibly to persuade ownership to ship Coach Blatt out the door.

http://www.blazersedge.com/2016/1/22/10818480/david-blatt-cleveland-cavalaiers-lebron-james-portland-trail-blazers

No one will likely confess to the deed, but it would not be the . . . → Read More: Blazers Dominated LeBron: What Was Up With That? by Chuck Strom

Remembering Sinatra: Pete Hamill and Jonathan Schwartz, by Chuck Strom

This is a recent conversation between two unquestioned experts on Sinatra, Pete Hamill, author of Why Sinatra Matters, and Jonathan Schwartz, the writer and radio host who coined the phrase “Chairman of the Board” in regard to Frank. A pleasant remembrance.

http://92yondemand.org/pete-hamill-with-jonathan-schwartz

– Chuck Strom

Stephen Curry’s First 100 3-Pointers, by Chuck Strom

If anyone hasn’t heard by now about the fantastically good year Stephen Curry has had so far, this video will satisfy all curiosity.

The sequence is very instructive, if only to show how many shots Curry makes in traffic, sometimes while being knocked to the floor. If there was ever a reason . . . → Read More: Stephen Curry’s First 100 3-Pointers, by Chuck Strom

Frank’s 100th Birthday – Let the Celebration Begin! by Chuck Strom

In September 1998, shortly after Frank Sinatra’s passing, the jazz critic Francis Davis described Sinatra’s career in The Atlantic as a two-decade procession of taking songs off the market, meaning that once Frank had recorded them, his interpretations were immediately accepted as definitive and thereby discouraged other singers from recording them afterward. I thought . . . → Read More: Frank’s 100th Birthday – Let the Celebration Begin! by Chuck Strom

It’s November – Time Again for Rip City, by Chuck Strom

The Blazers celebrate a hard-earned victory.

In our NFL-focused society, it can be easy to forget that the NBA season actually starts in November. For those who haven’t paid attention, there already have been some interesting developments, including a fired coach (Kevin McHale of the Houston Rockets) and a Golden State Warriors team that . . . → Read More: It’s November – Time Again for Rip City, by Chuck Strom

Grantland, RIP, by Chuck Strom

Doomed website Grantland.com was named for late sportswriter Grantland Rice who used elegant prose to elevate athletes to the level of demigods.

When ESPN shut down Grantland on October 30, I was surprised at its abruptness, but not that it happened; after Bill Simmons’s acrimonious departure from ESPN, it was realistically only a matter . . . → Read More: Grantland, RIP, by Chuck Strom

KC Royals Win 2015 World Series, by Chuck Strom

Matt Harvey

During last night’s World Series Game 5 broadcast, there was some criticism of Mets manager Terry Collins’s decision to leave Matt Harvey in the game to pitch not only to the first batter of the ninth inning but the next one as well. Second guessing is part of the fun of baseball, . . . → Read More: KC Royals Win 2015 World Series, by Chuck Strom

In Praise of Non-Ripped Baseball Players, by Chuck Strom

One of the charms of major league baseball is that on rare occasions, people can not only play but thrive in the league despite a non-athletic body if they have the right skills. We were reminded of this when Bartolo Colon came in to pitch for the Mets last night in the 12th inning . . . → Read More: In Praise of Non-Ripped Baseball Players, by Chuck Strom