Featured Stories

Other Pamplin Media Group sites

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

86°F

Portland

Partly Cloudy

Humidity: 36%

Wind: 0 mph

  • 21 Sep 2014

    Mostly Clear 86°F 60°F

  • 22 Sep 2014

    Partly Cloudy 79°F 62°F


A Rose Bowl possibility, thoughts on David Stern, Billy Ray Bates wears out his welcome, Roosevelt High basketball teams eye international trip, and more

Bumping along the road toward another busy sports weekend ...

• If Oregon and Oregon State win their next three games going into the Civil War game and ...

If the Ducks beat the Beavers and make it to the BCS championship game ...

The Rose Bowl could choose OSU as a Pac-12 representative for the Jan. 1 classic.

Rose Bowl officials could also take the Pac-12 North champion, or they could opt to not take a Pac-12 team all.

Pac-12 officials believe the Rose Bowl will lean toward a conference team if it meets the requirements — nine victories and a BCS ranking in the top 14 — but it is not guaranteed.

If the Beavers should go 4-1 — losing to Oregon and beating Nicholls State in the regular-season finale — they would be 10-2 and in prime position for their first Rose Bowl berth since 1965.

by: JENNIFER POTTHEISER/GETTY IMAGES - DAVID STERN• I’ve heard some well-earned plaudits for NBA Commissioner David Stern, who will retire in February 2014 after 30 years on the job.

I agree with those who believe Stern is the greatest pro sports commissioner in history. He has overseen growth of popularity in his sport and financial rewards that didn’t seem possible when he came on board.

One thing that always bothers me, though, is thinking along the lines of what Kenny Smith offered this week on TNT.

“When he took over, (NBA basketball) was not a global game,” said Smith, using the term that Stern has proffered for more than a decade. “It was an American game. Now it is a global game.”

The only part of the “global” emphasis I agree with is the impact of the influx of international players who have helped make the NBA game great. The addition of such players as Dirk Nowitzki, Pau Gasol, Yao Ming, Tony Parker and Dikembo Mutombo has enriched the product for the fans to enjoy.

On the other hand, it has created more competition for the likes of players such as Smith, whose NBA career lasted from 1987-97 and who might have been out of a job sooner if there were as many from overseas playing then as there are today.

As for the rest of the NBA’s “global” branding, I couldn’t give a hoot if the league makes a fortune with TV rights in Beijing or merchandising in Barcelona or marketing offices in Istanbul. I care about the American game and how it benefits the folks in Portland and Salt Lake City and Los Angeles and Boston.

• Billy Ray Bates has spent the last year in the Philippines as guest of the country’s pro basketball association. But reports say he has worn out his welcome.

The one-time Trail Blazer sensation — who was a Philippines Basketball Association star after his short career in the NBA had ended — was inducted into the PBA Hall of Fame last October and was shortly thereafter hired as skills coach with ASEAN Basketball League Philippine Patriots.

Bates, 56, lost that job in February, though, and was recently arrested when police picked him up allegedly drunk early one morning after a rock-throwing incident at a car.

• The Roosevelt High boys and girls basketball teams are working at a frenetic pace in an effort to fundraise for their trip to Mayaguez, Puerto Rico, for the Puerto Rico Hoops International Tournament Dec. 20-22.

First-year boys coach Rico Nunez — who played collegiately at Massachusetts — landed the invitation for both Roosevelt teams in the 90-team international event. Nunez and girls coach Nike Greene estimate it will cost each player $1,500 to make the trip, which Green considers a “once-in-a-lifetime experience” for the North Portlanders.

“We want to cultivate an environment where the kids get an expansive world view and experience more than just our neighborhood,” Greene says. “Many of them have never been on an airplane or never been out of the state.

“This is more than our players having a hand out. They’re all busy trying to raise money and invest in their future.”

Greene says several local businesses have stepped up with support. Anyone who wants to offer assistance can contact her at Roosevelt High at 503-916-5260.

• Looking at opening nights around the NBA ...

Former Jefferson High guard Terrence Ross, a rookie with Toronto, saw only six minutes in the Raptors’ 90-88 loss to Indiana. Ross went scoreless, missing a pair of 3-point shots ... The other rookie out of Jeff, forward Terrence Jones, never got off the bench in Houston’s 105-96 win over Detroit. ... Ex-South Medford High standout Kyle Singler, who played professionally in Spain last season after his career at Duke, had a nice NBA debut for the Pistons. Singler made 4 of 5 shots — 2 of 2 from 3-point range — and collected 10 points with two rebounds in 16 minutes off the bench.

Roy Hibbert gave Indiana just about what the Blazers had in mind when they offered him a four-year, $58-million contract as a restricted free agent last summer. The 7-2 center had 14 points, nine rebounds and five blocked shots in 29 minutes of the Pacers’ win over Toronto. ... Ex-Blazer Travis Outlaw was a DNP-CD (did not play/coach’s decision) in Sacramento’s 93-87 loss to Chicago — and coach Keith Smart used 11 players. ... Another ex-Blazer, Patty Mills, played six minutes in San Antonio’s 99-95 win over New Orleans, scoring one point. ... Former Oregon State guard Jared Cunningham got his first NBA duty, going scoreless in Dallas’ 113-94 loss to Utah. Cunningham was 0 for 3 from the field in six minutes.