Tensions are running high in Rip City.
After another tough loss to the Golden State Warriors Saturday night left the Blazers on the verge of getting swept out of the Western Conference Finals, fans were in no mood for ribbing—particularly from the hometown media.
Following Game 3, The Oregonian published a roundup of reaction on social media, as it's done throughout the playoffs. This one, however, came front-loaded with mocking memes and harsh criticism—including a comment from FOX Sports host and professional troll Skip Bayless referring to CJ McCollum and Damian Lillard as the "Trash Brothers."
The local response was a bit…heated, let's say, with everyone from comedian Ian Karmel to injured Blazers center Jusuf Nurkic chiming in to voice their displeasure. The Oregonian followed up with a tweet explaining that the story "is a round-up of what people on the internet are saying about the Blazers" and "no one here is calling anyone trash."
The tweet was promptly ratioed.
Up to this point, the response mostly seemed like the ventings of a frustrated fanbase. Now, it may have cost The Oregonian some revenue.
On Twitter last night, Blazers President Chris McGowan called the piece "ridiculous" and said the team will not "spend another dime" with The Oregonian as long as he is in charge.
McGowan was named CEO of Vulcan Sports & Entertainment, the group that owns both the Blazers and Seattle Seahawks, shortly before the death of Paul Allen last year.
Requests for comment from the Blazers and Vulcan were not immediately returned, but Oregonian editor Therese Bottomly issued the following statement to WW:
“In a roundup of memes and social reaction after Game 3, The Oregonian/OregonLive included several positive and negative takes by others, and the tweet landed with a thud. While it may have missed the mark with some, our job is not to cheerlead; it’s to report what is out there.”
Game 4 of the Western Conference Finals tips off at 6 pm tonight at Moda Center.