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Blazer has fans, foes

by: l.E. Baskow, Zach Randolph, shown playing earlier this season, certainly has had his ups and downs with the Blazers, and his latest escapade makes another minus, according to most readers.

A March 23 story (Witnesses: Randolph seen in Portland strip club while on leave to attend funeral) on our Web sites www.localnewsdaily.com and www.portlandtribune.com revived the debate about whether Trail Blazer Zach Randolph should stay or go - and whether the story should have been written. Here are a few of the comments:

Many factors may have been at play

Yeah, it might be despicable to some that Zach Randolph would stoop to going to strip clubs, but Portland has the most strip clubs per capita in the United States.

It's not just Randolph showing up there. Besides, our opinions of his morality or lack thereof don't matter. What matters is whether or not he lied to get out of the game that night, or if the team knew he wasn't going to be in Indiana until later in the week.

Who knows, he might have gone to the front office and asked to go to the funeral, they decided they didn't want him to be off his game on the court and said, 'Go take care of your family, see you when the funeral is over.' The 'story' didn't mention any of these factors.

Nate McMillan's 'surprise' might have been amusement that anyone would even call about something so irrelevant.

Next you'll be writing that Tonya Harding was the stripper, and Randolph better secure all the hubcaps in his neighborhood if he wants to stay safe ($102 might be a significant sum to Harding at this stage of her career).

Jeff Seiffert

Milwaukie

Pity teammates who have this 'leader'

How would you feel if you were one of Randolph's teammates? This isn't about Randolph, but his team.

This guy is the self-proclaimed 'leader' of the Blazers and he spends his night at the strip club and you're at work.

How would you feel if you were on his team?

Kirk Hochstatter

San Francisco, Calif.

Story never should have seen print

What a moron. And I'm not talking about Randolph, I'm talking about the so-called reporter who thought this was an actual story.

I say we follow Kerry Eggers around for a while to see what mistakes he makes. Eggers needs to get a real job or become a real reporter.

Matt Patterson

Beaverton

Blazer should get it together, elsewhere

Dang. I've long been in the 'keep Zach around for low-post scoring but make him a second or third option' camp.

Unfortunately, I think he'll probably be shipped if this report turns out to be valid. Portlanders can only take so much off the court, no matter what the guy brings on it.

I'll be sad to see Randolph go, but sadder still that the poor kid just can't seem to keep his nose clean - at least as clean as Blazer fans want our players to be.

The problem? Aside from the fact that he's a father and in a committed relationship, he was granted leave to grieve with his family. In Indiana.

I hope he can get his life together, whether it's with this team or another. He's a team captain. A representative of the Blazers.

Note to Randolph: Get out of the club, don't lie to your team, and do what you say you will do.

Cooper Whitman

Lake Oswego

To save team, excise the bad elements

I can see both sides of this bereavement/strip club leave, but no matter which way you slice it, it simply illustrates how flawed Randolph is as person and a potential leader, and how poor our future prospects are if we hitch our wagon to this star.

Furthermore, if the Blazers want to win back the respect of this city, you can't make special dispensations for idiots like Randolph and Darius Miles.

If you want to heal the team you've got to get rid of all of the cancer.

Hank Hosfield

Southwest Portland

Consider situation in light of other jobs

I know a lot of people who, if they called in sick, then turned around and got caught in a nudie bar when they were supposedly home sick or at a funeral, would at the very least be reprimanded by their boss; some would even get canned.

Deborah Hansen

Vancouver, Wash.