Paul's "All In"
By Mike Rice Posted in: PaulAllen
I owe the Blazers a blog this month and was trying to figure
out what to write in on, when I read a column in Wednesday's Oregonian about
the short comings of Paul Allen and his attention to his basketball team, the
Portland Trail Blazers.
Paul Allen and the Trail Blazers have been a big part of my
life for the last 21 years.
My years coincide with Paul's ownership of the Blazers.
I go back to the Memorial Coliseum days when this city
needed someone to step up and fund a modern, up-to-date arena. That was done by
Paul Allen. He did not try to move the franchise to a different city as other
owners have done.
Think about it for a minute when you read a negative column
on Paul Allen. He has always put his love for the Blazers above everything
He has lost millions of dollars on this franchise, but a day
does not go by that he is not e-mailing and texting Team President Larry Miller
and General Manager Chad Buchanan on how they can improve this team.
He has never threatened to move this team if the city did
not kowtow to his every wish like what other cities have gone through.
Remember when you read a column like this on Paul; you are
getting the modern spin on how to sell newspaper. Good news, happy news, does
not sell. Bad news, news that can be put on Twitter, news that can destroy
Paul Allen, if he listened to some, would have sold the
Blazers long ago and would not have saved the Seahawks who were ready to leave
Seattle for the highest bidder.
The reason he did not listen was because of the words
passion and love of the game.
He has a great deal of passion for Seattle and Portland and
their sports teams.
The passion has not dimmed in the recent years.
He still wants the best for both teams and continues to show
it with his pocket book.
Going into this year, the Blazers had the 5th
highest payroll at $79 million.
You can say it was the highest payroll not to make the
playoffs if you're into the "negative spin" that talk shows and negative
writers live on.
You could do that, but shouldn't.
You also look at the Greg Oden and Brandon Roy situation and
see what might have been if both were healthy. The players were there,
everything was set up for a championship run, but it did not happen. Do we sit
back and blame the medical staff and blame the owner and sell papers, or do we
figure out a new plan is needed for the future of this team? Do we sit back and
blame--blame to sell papers, or do we clear cap room with trades and get draft
picks for the future? Do we not look to spend money on the future to improve?
Not a word has been mentioned about not bringing in top free agents or a top
coach to save money.
Sometimes we get caught into newspaper talk about your
Blazers because it's only the only major sports team in our area. You don't
hear the Blazers down playing the Timbers in Portland; only the media playing
one against the other.
Do your homework on looking at other cities and their teams
who have had ownership challenges and attendance issues for years!
I have traveled the NBA cities for a long time. I see how
the Blazer fan base is the best in the NBA.
I still get goose bumps when they introduce the Blazers at
the Rose Garden.
This does not happen in a lot of NBA cities.
I am always proud that I represent the Blazers. I am also
really looking forward to this summer and the moves the Blazers will make.
I know they will make moves because they have an owner that
wants to win a championship for this city.
He does not need to read about how he should act to keep his
It is alive and he is not looking to sell newspapers by
As you can see, I get a little riled up when I read and hear
how the Blazers can't get free agents to come to this city.
We mainly have a shot at a lot of trades and free agents
because we have the planning and resources to make that happen.
We have an owner who asks a million questions on the best
way to win in the NBA. If you have the right answers to these questions, things
Every year at the trade deadline, draft day, and the first
day of free agency, one of the most exciting places to be is in Portland. The
reason for that is Paul Allen who buys extra draft picks, adding free agents to
fill the roster and making trades. He has never needed a push from outside
trying to get emotional to satisfy their own agenda to make the Blazers a
I love the quotes from Oregonlive.com on the subject:
"He is a passionate man who loves to experience life…We are
lucky to have him."
"To say these (newspaper)
pieces are tired is an understatement." - bmac
"Mr. Allen is a multi-tasker, so he
is not neglecting the Blazers. The fans here can be fickle. Only .0333% of the
teams each year become NBA champ." - Ziggy
new-owner could solve the problem. If we forget what Paul
Allen has done for the city we put our team at risk." -- Anonymous.
"The man has lost millions upon millions in an attempt to
put a quality team on the floor. I have not agree'd
with some of the moves that he has made lately. However, he has been a pretty
committed owner during his time as an owner. You watch, next draft, he will
again spend money to try and move up." -- oceanfrnt34th
"He tried to buy a championship once and we hated it. And of
course Canzano led the charge against that team."
"The Oregonian is in the business of selling newspaper."
After reading some of these quotes, it does show me the real
And with that I can point to 3,500 grants for $450 million
over the past 20 years, and a plan to donate most of his wealth to charity
during the rest of his life.
That is the Trail Blazers owner Paul Allen.
No one loves the Blazers and the NBA more than him and I
hope he gets his dream of winning a championship for Portland.