Talkin' Ball - Taking your questions!

Talkin' Ball - Taking your questions!

We're on LIVE now with the Talkin' Ball crew over on Comcast SportsNet. Got questions? NBA? Ducks? Beavers? NFL? Post them in the comments!

The wait is over: Blazers open the regular season vs. Jazz

The wait is over: Blazers open the regular season vs. Jazz

Utah Jazz vs. Portland Trail Blazers

The Portland Trail Blazers will tip-off its 2016-17 NBA campaign when the Blazers host the Utah Jazz on Tuesday, October 25th.  The Trail Blazers took both preseason games vs. the Jazz.  Portland beat Utah on October 3rd, 98-89.  The Blazers then beat the Jazz in Utah, 88-84 last Wednesday night.

During the first week of the preseason, Jazz starting small forward Gordon Hayward fractured his left ring finger.  Hayward is not expected to return to the Jazz lineup until three weeks into the regular season.   Last season, Hayward averaged 19.7 points and five rebounds per contest.  The Jazz will of course need the 26-year-old back at full strength to live up to the national media expectations of competing for the winner of the NW division title.

Utah has also been without power forward Derrick Favors (left knee).  Favors is listed as questionable for Tuesday night’s game against the Blazers.

We will set the stage for the Blazers and Jazz game on Rip City Live on CSN at 6:oopm.  And if you can’t get to a TV, you can catch The Scoop Pregame Show streaming live at 6:00pm on



Quick Links:

Trail Blazers put preseason to bed, proclaim they are ready for games to count

Blazers exercise player options on Noah Vonleh and Shabazz Napier

Blazers put NBA-record win streak on the line opening night

Video:  Team’s are going to attack the Blazers backcourt

Video: Stotts: I think everybody is ready

Video: Lillard: Team is comfortable with each other, more confident


Game Details:

Where: Moda Center, Portland OR

Television: KGW, 7:00pm

Live streaming: The Scoop Pregame Show streams at 6:00pm at The Scoop Postgame Show will stream immediately after the game at

CSN Programming:  Rip City Live (6:00pm), Talkin' Ball  (Immediately after the Blazers postgame show)

Radio: Rip City Radio 620

Beavers turn attention to WSU


Beavers turn attention to WSU

The Beavers went into Husky Stadium, fought hard, and ultimately fell to one of the best team's in the nation last weekend; a 41-17 loss at the hands of the Washington Huskies. Now the Beavers turn their attention to the Washington State Cougars, fresh off a 37-32 win over the Arizona State Sun Devils. Can the Beavers pull the upset? We will find out on Sunday. Until then, hear what Coach Andersen had to say in his weekly press conference as he gets his team prepared for kickoff. #GoBeavs 

Blazers put NBA-record win streak on the line opening night

Blazers put NBA-record win streak on the line opening night

Portland Trail Blazers (0-0) vs. Utah Jazz (0-0)

Tuesday, Moda Center, 7 p.m.

Television: Rip City Live (5:30) CSN; Utah vs. Portland (7 p.m.), KGW; Talkin' Ball (9:30), CSN.

There are traditions, and then there are traditions. The Trail Blazers have established a meaningful tradition that has been in the making since the turn of this century and it's an NBA record.

Portland has won a league-record 15 consecutive home openers and that's the task facing the visiting Utah Jazz Tuesday night in Moda Center. Utah lost to the Trail Blazers twice during the exhibition season. But those games were meaningless and, quite obviously, for these two teams on the rise that are often predicted to be fighting over the same playoff berths this season, this game is not.

Utah and Portland are loaded with young players expected to develop into cohesive units. The Jazz has made its reputation on defense, built around shotblocking center Rudy Gobert. Portland is a high-scoring unit that is offensively efficient and looking to improve at the defensive end.

I would expect these teams to be fighting for the fourth or fifth playoff spots in the Western Conference. And I certainly believe Portland, if healthy, is capable of churning out 50 wins this season. The Trail Blazer leader, Damian Lillard, says his team is ready for the season.

"Seven preseason games and a lot of workouts, I think we're prepared to go," Lillard said Monday after practice. "We played them twice in the preseason and over the years, we know that they're going to defend. they have great length, they play hard -- they're a competitive team capable of coming in here and beating us. We've got to be sharp. We've got to put our best foot forward.

"It's always great to open up the season at home. You know you're going to get that excitement from the crowd. Our guys will be pumped to play in front of crowd and have that homecourt advantage. But just because we're the home team doesn't mean it's going to be a fun, easy game. We have to go out there and attack the game and be ready to play."

Terry Stotts believes his team is prepared.

"I think everybody is ready," he said. "October was good, the preseason games were good and I think everybody's ready to go."

"I think they're going to have a very good season," Stotts said, when asked about the Jazz. "Just the addition of some veteran guys like George Hill and Boris Diaw and Joe Johnson -- guys who have played at a high level on 50-win teams. One of the problems the Jazz had last year was closing out some games. I think that experience will help them along with just that internal growth that they'll have. Obviously without (Gordon) Hayward it will be a little bit of a challenge for them."

Hayward is out a few more weeks with a broken finger on his left hand and forward Derrick Favors is nursing a sore knee that kept him out of the latter part of the preseason schedule. The Trail Blazers will be without center Festus Ezeli, who did not participate in the exhibition season because of a medical procedure on a knee.

As of Monday afternoon there were still a limited number of tickets available for the game.

Former Beavers star Gary Payton II waived by Houston Rockets

USA Today

Former Beavers star Gary Payton II waived by Houston Rockets

Time has run out for Gary Payton II in Houston after the former Oregon State star guard was waived by the Rockets, the team announced Monday. 

Payton averaged just 1.8 points and .67 assists in six preseason games for the Rockets, playing roughly 11 minutes per game. Houston had five point guards on the roster, had he remained with the team, finding the court would have been a challenge for the first year guard. 

Now Payton has to wait to see if a team chooses to claim him off waivers. Per NBA rules, if no team claims him in 48 hours, he will become a free agent. 

Payton went undrafted in 2016 after guiding the Beavers to the NCAA tournament for the first time since 1990. In his brief two-years in Corvallis he averaged 14.7 points, 4.1 assists, and 2.8 steals per game.

An intriguing prospect with potential to be a defensive stopper, Payton could be a good pickup for any team looking for a project. 

At the very least, Payton should land in the D-League. 


Herbert could lift Helfrich as the coach did the young QB at Cal

Herbert could lift Helfrich as the coach did the young QB at Cal

BERKELEY, Calif. – Oregon quarterback Justin Herbert dropped to one knee near Oregon's sideline after his final pass resulted in an interception that gave California a 52-49 win in double overtime Friday night at Memorial Stadium.

The play, which resulted in Cal's team storming the field, left the Ducks dejected after they had fought back from a three-touchdown deficit.  

UO coach Mark Helfrich was the first to rush to Herbert. The coach lifted up his freshman quarterback and offered support. Soon, several players swarmed in to console Herbert, who had thrown six touchdown passes on the evening.  

Helfrich was there for his quarterback in his first moment of crushing defeat where he had made the critical mistake to cost Oregon a victory. In the bigger picture, however, Herbert could ultimately lift Helfrich from the ashes of what is rapidly becoming the worst season for Oregon (2-5, 0-4 Pac-12) since at least 2004 (5-6) and maybe as far back as 1991 (3-8).

Many are calling for Helfrich's head despite the fact that he guided the 2014 Oregon team to a Pac-12 title, a Rose Bowl victory and a berth in the national championship game. Troubles at quarterback and a pitiful defense in the two seasons since have cast a shadow over Helfrich's ability to oversee recruiting and develop talent. 

Herbert's rise is step one toward erasing that perception, ridiculous on its surface given that Helfrich recruited and helped develop Heisman Trophy winner, Marcus Mariota. Herbert is Oregon's next Mariota.

The kid is legit, and then some.

One of the greatest compliments paid toward Herbert since his arrival this fall from Sheldon High School is that he always appears to be an unflappable perfectionist, much like Mariota was. Then factor in Herbert's 6-foot-6 athletic frame, nimble feet, uncanny pocket savvy, quick release, rocket arm and keen accuracy, and you have the makings of a potential superstar. 

Oregon has traditionally only been great when it had at least a very good quarterback running the show. Joey Harrington, Kellen Clemens, Darron Thomas and Mariota all led the Ducks to double-digit win seasons, and all into national contention, as did Dennis Dixon in 2007 before a knee injury ended his season with Oregon ranked No. 2 in the nation. 

Herbert is next in the line of great UO quarterbacks, and the prediction here is that barring injury he will be a Heisman finalist in 2018 and a first-round NFL draft pick in 2019 or 2020. 

Herbert's composure and strong mental makeup have been on display in his two starts, although Herbert's youth might have ultimately led to the final decision by the coaches that ended Friday's game in defeat.

More on that later. First, back to Herbert's moxie. 

During a 70-21 loss to No. 5 Washington on Oct. 8, Herbert never appeared to be rattled. He threw an interception on the first play of the game, contributed to the team falling behind 21-0 and could never pull the Ducks back into the game, but he didn't fold. He kept pressing. Kept playing. Kept going, and he eventually threw two eye-popping touchdown passes. 

On Friday night, Herbert struggled early and the Ducks fell behind 21-0 in the second quarter and trailed 34-14 in the second half. Once again, Herbert didn't crumble. Instead, he become red hot and his six-yard touchdown pass to Charles Nelson gave UO a 35-34 lead in the fourth quarter. 

Through it all, Herbert displayed ridiculous talent. The type or talent that thrusts a player past a seasoned veteran like Dakota Prukop and a redshirt freshman like Travis Jonsen, rated coming out of high school as the No. 3 dual-threat quarterback in the nation by 

Herbert, a former three-star recruit, completed 22-of-40 passes for 258 yards against Cal. He threw touchdown passes on the run, he threw them over the middle, he gunned them on post patterns, and in the case of Nelson, he displayed a level of confidence typically unseen by a freshman.

On the play, Herbert looked left for Carrington who ran a rather interesting slant pattern that fooled nobody, then without hesitation turned his attention to the other side of the field to locate Nelson, also running a slant, and fired a bullet low where only the receiver could get it between two defenders. 

The ball zipped right past Cal linebacker Jordan Kunaszyk, helpless to defend the hard-thrown ball (foreshadow alert). 

With the Ducks trailing 42-35, Oregon went to Nelson again, this time on a post pattern from the right side run underneath a deeper route. Nelson caught the pass and ran the rest of the way for a 42-yard touchdown that tied the game at 42 each. 

Once again, Kunaszyk was out of position after biting on a play action and not dropping far enough to his left to get in the way or the pass (more foreshadowing).

In overtime, Oregon went to the exact same play, this time with redshirt sophomore wide receiver Jalen Brown running the post underneath a deeper route. The result was a 20-yard touchdown pass that gave Oregon a short-lived 49-42 lead in the first overtime. 

Once again, Cal's Kunaszyk got caught out of position. 

Cal tied the game on its next possession then settled for a field goal in the second overtime to make the score 52-49, setting up Herbert for a potential game-winning score. 

Once again, Oregon went back to the same play that had resulted in touchdown passes to Nelson and Brown.

This time, Brown ran the post underneath a seam route from tight end Pharaoh Brown. But unlike on the two touchdown passes, Kunaszyk didn't bite as hard on play action, he read Herbert's eyes and then got in front of the pass intended for Brown who ran a post. 

Herbert said linemen blocked his vision and he never saw Kunaszyk, who briefly bobbled the pass before securing the ball and running for a few yards before going down. 

“It worked the past couple of times and looked very similar on that play," Herbert said. "I just didn’t see the linebacker and he got under it and made a good play.”

Said Brown: "I was surprised that the linebacker jumped it. I thought I was going to get the ball no matter what."

Helfrich on Sunday night said of Herbert on the interception: "I think he kind of predetermined that he was going to go to that side. There was another route that was in the progression and the first guy was open. That's one of those things where you're kind of hoping for what's gonna happen rather than attacking and reacting to what you see."

A freshman mistake made by a talented kid who played nothing like a freshman.  

Following the interception, Herbert briefly ran after Kunaszyk then stopped after the linebacker gave up. That's when a dejected Herbert went down to one knee and Helfrich ran to him.

The fact Oregon went to the same play over and over could be because of Herbert's youth and limited knowledge of the playbook. At some point, one must consider that the defense is going to figure out a play. In this case, Kunaszyk certainly did. Herbert, however, didn't recognize him the way the linebacker recognized the play. 

“I’d do the exact same thing at the end and trust him to make the play," Helfrich said Friday night. 

Players have the same confidence in Herbert and that's why they rallied to him after the defeat. 

"We wanted to show him that we've got his back," Brown said. "He has a great heart and a great passion for this game.  

“I still trust him with everything in me,” redshirt sophomore running back Tony Brooks-James said.

As they should. Herbert is the savior. He might not be able to save this season, but he is what Oregon needs moving forward, and his presence as a budding talent should buy Helfrich and the coaching staff time to rebuild this thing despite the swirling insanity among those actually considering jettisoning this coaching staff after one bad season just two years removed from a national title run. 

The man to lead Herbert to great heights, as he did Mariota, is Helfrich. He and his staff deserve the chance to rebuild the defense, which will return 10 starters next season, and see Herbert's development through, as well as the development of a young offensive line. If given that chance, the Ducks will rise again. 

“It’s a step in the right direction but definitely not the way we wanted it to end,” Herbert said.

No, but nights like Friday will only make Herbert stronger and better, and the Ducks will one day benefit from the lumps they are taking this season. 

Blazers exercise player options on Noah Vonleh and Shabazz Napier

USA Today

Blazers exercise player options on Noah Vonleh and Shabazz Napier

The Portland Trail Blazers have exercised the fourth-year contract options on forward Noah Vonleh and guard Shabazz Napier, it was announced today by president of basketball operations Neil Olshey.

Vonleh, 21, posted averages of 3.6 points (42.1% FG, 74.5% FT), 3.9 rebounds, 0.4 assists and 15.1 minutes in 78 games (56 starts) last season with the Trail Blazers after being acquired from the Charlotte Hornets on June 24, 2015. Vonleh was the ninth overall pick in the first round of the 2014 NBA Draft.

Acquired on July 7 from the Orlando Magic in exchange for cash considerations, Napier, 24, has averaged 4.4 points (36.1% FG, 34.7% 3-PT, 76.2% FT), 1.6 rebounds, 2.1 assists and 15.2 minutes over two seasons with the Miami Heat and Orlando. Napier was originally selected as the 24th overall pick in the first round of the 2014 NBA Draft.




In their final match of the 2016 regular season, the Portland Timbers fell 4-1 to Vancouver Whitecaps FC before 24,083 fans at BC Place on Sunday afternoon. Midfielder Diego Valeri tallied a goal midway through the second half for the Timbers, recording a career-high 14th MLS goal in 2016.

After conceding a pair of goals in the first half, and two additional finishes in a two-minute stretch early in the second half, the Timbers found the back of the net from the penalty spot in the 72nd minute when Valeri converted, sending goalkeeper David Ousted the opposite direction. The Timbers earned the penalty kick when midfielder Jack Barmby was brought down after combining with Adi inside the area.

The finish, Valeri’s 14th goal in 2016, signified an MLS career-high for the midfielder, and the eighth-most in MLS this season, as the Timbers become just the 10th team in league history to have multiple players score 14 or more goals in the same season with forward Fanendo Adi scoring 16 times in league play. On the defensive end, goalkeeper Jake Gleeson recorded three saves in the match against Whitecaps FC, extending his season tally to 112 saves in 28 games played, a save total that ranked as the third-most saves in MLS this season.

With the result, the Timbers conclude their 2016 season with a 12-14-8 record (44pts).

With both teams taking an aggressive approach to start the match, Vancouver (10-15-9, 39pts) managed to open the scoring in the 13th minute of play when defender Fraser Aird’s cross found its way to midfielder Giles Barnes, who quickly struck a powerful shot into the top right corner from just inside the 18-yard box. Four minutes later, the Timbers responded in the attacking third when Valeri’s through ball released midfielder Lucas Melano away from goal, with the midfielder firing a shot that forced a strong save from Ousted, producing a corner for Portland.

In the 19th minute, Portland created its strongest chance of the half when midfielder Darren Mattocks powered his way into the box, playing a quick cross to the near post to Adi. Using his body to hold up the ball inside the six-yard box, Adi turned and fired a strike that rattled off the post, with the ball rebounding to Melano, who had his follow-up attempt saved by Ousted from four yards away.

With less than 15 minutes remaining in the first half, Whitecaps FC doubled their lead when Barnes won the ball just outside the area, driving into the box before curling a shot into the bottom right corner to record his second goal of the game.

Approaching halftime, the Timbers created another chance on goal in the 37th minute when Valeri’s floated cross into the box landed to midfielder Jack Jewsbury, who had his first-time effort blocked by the Whitecaps FC defense, while Barmby’s chance in the 50th minute forced a strong save by Ousted. One minute later, Valeri and Barmby combined on a short corner, with Valeri driving into the box from the endline before playing a dangerous pass across the face of the goal, forcing a difficult clearance from the Whitecaps FC defense.

Three minutes later, Whitecaps FC tallied a pair of goals in a two-minute stretch to extend its lead, with midfielder Pedro Morales scoring a powerful strike in the 54th minute, before Nicolas Mezquida managed to convert on the counter attack in the 55th minute.

Sunday’s match marked the final MLS contest for Jewsbury and Ned Grabavoy, who both recently announced their decision to retire following the 2016 campaign. Jewsbury and Grabavoy rank as just two of 39 players in league history to play 300 or more MLS games, with Jewsbury ranked ninth (352) and Grabavoy ranked 39th (301).  


  • Diego Valeri scored his 14th goal of the season for the Timbers, which is a career high for the midfielder. Valeri concludes the season tied for the eighth-most goals scored in MLS this season. 
  • With the finish, Portland is the 10th team in MLS history to have multiple players score 14 or more goals in the same season with forward Fanendo Adi (16) and Valeri (14) accomplishing the feat.
  • With four chances created in the match, Valeri finished 2016 with 89 chances created, the second-highest total in MLS behind only New York Red Bulls midfielder Sacha Kljestan. 
  • Jake Gleeson finished the season with 112 saves, which is tied for third-most in 2016.
  • Jack Jewsbury played in his 157th regular-season match for Portland, ranking as the fourth-most matches played in Timbers history across all eras of the club (since 1975). Jewsbury, who is retiring, finishes his MLS career with 352 regular-season games played, which is ninth-most in MLS history.
  • Gbenga Arokoyo made his debut for the Timbers, entering the game as a second-half substitute. 

Beavers learn the hard way why Washington is class of the Pac-12

Beavers learn the hard way why Washington is class of the Pac-12

SEATTLE - The Beavers came to Seattle as huge underdogs against No.5 Washington and after a beat down at the hands of the Huskies, learned the hard way why UW is not only the best team in the Pacific Northwest, but the class of the Pac-12.

The Huskies, led by sophomore quarterback Jake Browning, tore through the Oregon State defense with ease. To Oregon State’s credit, they did have plenty of good plays, and good defensive drives in fact, but it was the mistakes that hurt them.

As Bright Ugwoegbu said post game, "When facing a team like this you have to be more diciplined. We can't makes any mistakes." Good teams like Washington will take advantage when their opponents trip up, and that's just what the Huskies did.

Of Browning’s three touchdown passes on the night, two of them came on busted coverage. Browning once finding Aaron Fuller wide open in the corner of the end zone, and once finding Dante Pettis free up the middle for a long touchdown pass. The busted plays resulted in both receivers catching the ball with no defenders within 10-yards of them. 

When OSU made a mistake, Washington would land a haymaker. However, on the plays they didn’t have a mental lapse, OSU showed they have the talent to stand strong.

This is the same Washington team that just hung 70 on the Oregon Ducks, mind you, but managed to score jsut 10 second half points. Sure, the backups played a most of the fourth quarter, but still OSU showed they have fight.

They may have fought hard, but in the end the talent gap was just too much for the Beavers to overcome. The fact that a large chunk of their depth, including star running back Ryan Nall, missed the game with injuries didn’t help the matter. Despite the loss, there is plenty the Beavers can take away from this game. The defense showed at times that it can stop a talented offense, while the offense, especially in the second half, showed it can put a drive together and score points.

But at the end of the day, it was just another classic Beavers performance. I feel like a broken record, because I have written this before, but the Beavers team we saw in the second half would have blown out the Beavers team we saw in the first. Win of lose, the only thing Oregon State needs to focus on these final five games is how to play a football game for a full 60 minutes. They did once this season, and looked what happened. They beat Cal in overtime.

Let’s hope they can find whatever worked that weekend and apply it the rest of the way. Otherwise, these results will continue to feel like Déjà vu all over again.

Final score: Oregon State 17 – Washington 41

Next Up: The Beavers return home next weekend for a matchup with the Washington State Cougars. Kickoff is set for 7:45 PM on Saturday, October 29.




Marcus McMaryion – 12 for 26, 148 yards, no touchdowns and two interceptions. 


Tim Cook: 18 attempts, 108 yards and a touchdown

Victor Bolden: two attempts, 75 yards and a touchdown


Victor Bolden: five catches, 58 yards

Timmy Hernandez: two catches, 33 yards

Jordan Villamin: two catches, 41 yards



Jake Browning – 14 for 28, 219 yards and three touchdowns


Myles Gaskin - 18 carries, 128 yards and a touchdown

Jake Browning – five carries, 22 yards and a touchdown


John Ross – four catches, 115 yards

Dante Pettis – four catches, 112 yards and two touchdowns


Beavers fail to put points on scoreboard in first half against UW

USA Today

Beavers fail to put points on scoreboard in first half against UW

 The Beavers came into Seattle as huge underdogs against No.5 Washington. They may need a miracle in the second half if they have any hope of pulling an upset.

The Huskies, led by Jake Browning, have torn through the OSU defense.

The UW offense failed to score on just one of its first five possessions, finding the end zone four times; twice through the air and twice on the ground.

For the injury riddled OSU offense, it has been tough to move the ball at all.  Without star running back Ryan Nall (ankle), and starting third string quarterback Marcus McMaryion, the offense has been none existent.

The Washington defense has been all over the field, and has made it hard for Oregon State to get past the line of scrimmage, let alone score.  The Beavers had just five first downs, to Washington’s 16, while being outgained 89-318.

The Beavers need a lot to change in the second have, but that will be easier said than done. This Huskies team is every bit as good as it has been hyped up to be.

Halftime score: Oregon State 0 – Washington 31




Marcus McMaryion – 8 for 14, 56 yards and an interception


Tim Cook: 7 attempts, 33 yards


Timmy Hernandez: 2 catches, 33 yards

Paul Lucas: 2 catches, 15 yards



Jake Browning – 10 for 21, 216 yards and two touchdowns


Myles Gaskin - 10 carries, 73 yards and a touchdown

Jake Browning – 5 carries for 21 yards and a touchdown


John Ross – 4 catches, 115 yards

Dante Pettis – 2 catches, 54 yards and a touchdown