Trail Mix: Kevin Love says his “heart will always be in Portland,” LeBron has no beef with Dame

 (AP Photo/Paul Beaty)

(AP Photo/Paul Beaty)

We often don’t go to opposing teams shoot around’s unless it’s something important and the NBA’s new Beatles coming to town certainly constitutes importance. Here are some goodies from shootaround as well as some other links before tonight’s game.

  • Kevin Love addressed his feelings about returning to his hometown to face the Blazers tonight. “Listen Portland is always where my heart is going to be. My immediate family still lives here.  I love coming home. It’s a place that I always have loved playing. I was looking at it today, this is the Rose Garden to me that’s what I grew up with. It’s a fun place to come and play. The crowd, energy, the fans are always great. Tough but fun to play in front of but it’s fun to play in Portland.”
  • On the mixed reactions he gets from the crowd in Portland, Love said: “Mixed reactions all the same. There’s… that’s always going to happen. That’s just how it goes sometimes. It gives me a good smile and a lot of supporters and people that really love the Blazers and know what they do.”
  • On seeing his family, Love said: “It’s always bitter sweet. It’s great I get to seem them, it’s great I get to play in front of them in live action. But it’s never long enough. But the good thing is looking at our schedule, I’ll be able to see them around the holidays. I just wish I could come back here and have it like we used to but I got to work.”
  • Sean Meagher of has video of Love’s shootaround availability.
  • Love said that the amount of tickets he gets for friends and family is smaller now, saying he probably got a dozen. Additionally, Love solved a little bit of mystery regarding his jersey number, saying at shootaround that while he did not choose the number 0 because the back would say “No Love,” he realized it after the fact and admitted he thought it was pretty cool. Makes two of us.
  • Last week we dealt with the story of some old tweets from Damian Lillard directed at LeBron James from 2011. Lillard told reporters last week he reached out to James personally as soon as the tweets were released. In Tuesday’s shootaround, LeBron confirmed for us Lillard’s side of the story, even adding he wasn’t aware of the tweets until Lillard told him. “I didn’t even see the tweets. I don’t really get into social media like that. He came to me before it even got to me and we hashed it out right there so it’s no big deal.” And thus ends the biggest non-story of the Blazers season.
  • Wesley Matthews called out the Blazers starting 5 for their defense in the beginning of game’s in today’s Columbian
  • Our old friend Chris Haynes, formerly of CSNNW and currently with, spoke with Kyrie Irving and Damian Lillard about their friendship, rivalry and being leaders of “the new school.” 
Erik Gundersen

Erik Gundersen

Erik Gundersen is the Trail Blazers beat reporter for The Columbian. He's a graduate of the Allen School of Journalism and Communication at the University of Oregon in addition earning a degree in Spanish. He's covered the NBA for four seasons. You can also occasionally find his work on's NBA section for their TrueCities series. He also fist-bumped with Kanye West once. Follow @BlazerBanter on twitter for more Blazers and NBA news.

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