Greg Oden – one classy fella

On Wednesday, I’m sitting at Chili’s in Lake O for lunch of some honey dipped chicken wings…(don’t ask)…. when I looked up at the TV and saw our own Greg Oden being interviews by Jim Rome on ESPN. I was intrigued because Oden hasn’t been in the news lately since he isn’t playing. One would think Brandon Roy would be in the interview chair. The sound was off, so I had to read he subtitles between chewy bites of overcooked chicken. The interview was about Oden speaking out publicly in support of Barak Obama. That’s cool. I am surprised that this is a big news story, but in the world of sports, maybe the players don’t publicly get political and this is a first.

On Thursday, I got a little confused. I was listening to OPB and they ran a story about Laura Bush’s visit to Portland. Along with causing traffic delays, Mrs. Bush was in town to support youth programs as part of an initiative W. had kicked off in 2005. One of those programs is mentoring. At one event, our Greg Oden got up on stage to introduce Laura Bush…. HUH? Yep, the day after Greg is news about supporting Obama, he is hanging with Laura. Now that is one classy fella. Seriously. I personally would have had a difficult time if put in that position. It shows we picked a winner in more ways than just basketball when we drafted Greg Oden. Way to go Greg!

Side note – look who else has a blog and wants to keep Portland weird.

10 Comments so far

  1. Hula (unregistered) on February 29th, 2008 @ 8:28 am

    I’d say Greg is more "getting paid" than "classy."

    And I’m not sure how introducing Laura Bush is, in and of itself, "classy."

  2. Nolando (unregistered) on February 29th, 2008 @ 8:48 am

    Maybe he’s just not that bright? Dunno but he IS from texas…

  3. Daaaaave (unregistered) on February 29th, 2008 @ 9:19 am

    Actually, Oden is from Indiana.

  4. jonashpdx (unregistered) on February 29th, 2008 @ 9:35 am

    I gotta agree with dieselboi, I think this is pretty classy.

    From what I understand this was a nonpartisan thing having to do with homeless youth outreach or some such thing (as dieselboi notes), and while there’s a time and a place to tell laura that her husband’s a tool who shouldn’t be running an ice cream truck, much less the country, that probably wasn’t it. Now, if it was a $500-a-plate fundraising dinner, that’d be a different story.

    As for Oden, for an 18-year-old kid who could be sitting back and counting his millions while playing XBOX and rehabbing, I think it’s pretty cool that he’s out and about in the political realm, even if it’s just dipping his giant pinkie toe out there. And if he’s outspoken about his support for Obama, then he’s bright enough for me — how many other athletes (who will never have to worry about finding their next job or health care for the kids, etc) even bother to vote, much less vote for a democrat, much less actually TELL people about it. good on ya, Greg.

    **oh, and dieselboi– captions, my friend, not subtitles. a small distinction, i know, but since it’s my job and all…

  5. dieselboi (unregistered) on February 29th, 2008 @ 9:37 am

    Wow, some hate for the Oden.

    You can look at this cynically or not. I prefer not. To think Oden was being paid to endorse Obama seems ridiculous. Further, to then introduce Lara? Whatever. I’m trying not to see everything everywhere from a negative perspective.

    If you want cynicism, head on over to Jack Bog’s blog.

  6. Norm! (unregistered) on February 29th, 2008 @ 9:46 am

    The Laura Bush event was nonpartisan and about mentoring and helping youth. I thought Oden’s comment (via was awkward and little creepy:

    "Greg Oden: ‘I’m lucky, I have an amazing and strong mom, she beats me up all the time. And I also have great mentors. One of them is here today, his name is Mike Conley Senior. He is my agent and my friend and kind of a father figure’."

    His agent is his mentor and father figure? Eeeek. I’m not sure its called mentoring when someone takes a cut of your paycheck.

  7. Daaaaave (unregistered) on February 29th, 2008 @ 10:55 am

    Oden’s been friends since Conley Senior and Junior since he was in grade school.

  8. jim (unregistered) on February 29th, 2008 @ 11:14 am

    I like how people have to pick apart each thing he says and look for a negative or clandestine motive. He’s a bright and charming guy and hopefully he can shrug the cynicism off. Lighten up folks. Thanks for the post though, Diesel.

  9. Hula (unregistered) on February 29th, 2008 @ 11:42 am

    I’m not saying he’s a bad guy, just that you’re applying attributes to him, really, without basis. Portland likes to trot out its "celebrities" when certain people come to town and Oden is the draw right now. From the few times I’ve visited his blog I get the feeling he’s not particularly interested in any issues he could have articulated to Laura Bush. I think someone calls him and tells him to do something and he shows up and does it. Great. But don’t make it out like he’s doing a super great job. He’s not playing basketball, what else is he supposed to be doing? We’re supposed to be impressed he’s not sitting at home playing XBOX? Hey, I’m glad he’s a stand up guy, but who cares? (not trying to be snarky, just trying to understand)

  10. Johnpaint (unregistered) on February 29th, 2008 @ 8:39 pm

    Well, it will great to just him in a uniform. Next year will be even better I hope.

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