Tuesday, June 5, after work I ate a quick burger and fries at McDonald's downtown, then headed on over to the Oregon Historical Society for a prime-time event. An Evening with The Schonz: As any true Oregonian knows, on June 5, 1977, the Portland Trailblazers won their first and only NBA Championship. On the 35th anniversary of that championship, Blazer broadcasting legend Bill Schonely--aka "The Schonz"--will share his memories of that championship year, and of a remarkable broadcasting career that earned him a place in the Basketball Hall of Fame.
Before the evening began, I took this photo. There in the distance, you see Dale Schlueter, 6'10" center on the team 1970-1972, the first two years of the team's existence; Mrs. Harry Glickman, wife of one of the founders of the team; Bill Schonely, first play-by-play announcer for the team and still with the team 42 years later; Bobby Gross, a 6'6" starting small forward for the team during the championship season; and around to the back of Chris Dudley, a 6'11" center who was a Trail Blazer from 1993-1997.
During the evening we went "live" to the local NBC affiliate, KGW, for a couple of spots on their week-nightly show, Live at 7. Here the reporter Joe gets everyone involved--that's him with the sheet of paper in his hand. Left to right, KGW cameraman, Mr. Schonely, Bobby Gross, Joe, Mr. Harry Glickman.
Something made Mr. Schonely and Bobby Gross smile, on live television!
The Schonz, beloved by all Portlanders and Oregonians, whether or not they are fans of NBA basketball.
I took just a few photos because I wanted to concentrate on what was said, what Mr. Schonely shared with us. I think I grinned and/or smiled the entire time! What a treat!
And I got to talk to Mr. Schlueter again, for the third or fourth time starting last December, I've lost count. When I walked up to speak, he put his arm around my shoulder, drawing me in and following my, "Hi, Mr. Schlueter!" with "I saw you sitting over there!" Then we discussed the Trail Blazers' new general manager and our hopes for the upcoming season. Basketball heaven.