Blazer Fever hits Central Oregon

Team's recent success has High Desert fired up

C.O. gets fired up over Blazers

BEND, Ore. - Fans are pumped up! From jerseys flying off the racks to big watch parties at sports bars, everyone seems to be catching Blazer Fever.

"Good to see them get out of that first round for the first time in 14 years," said Russell Wilson, a Blazer fan. "It's been awhile."

"I'm hoping to see them in the Finals -- I think that would be exciting," said Ray Robles, another Blazers fan.

Excitement over the Portland Trail Blazers has hit Central Oregon with a bang. The team's slam dunk success has caused apparel to fly off the rack.

"Towards the end of the season is when it picked up speed," said Austin Bishop, sales associate at Pro Image Sports. "I mean, obviously once the playoffs started we started selling more stuff, and more people started coming in because they started playing really well."

The shining moment so far was when all-star point guard Damian Lillard hit the series-clinching shot against the Houston Rockets last Friday.

So where were you when it happened?

"Oh, I jumped!" Robles said. "I jumped, bro -- I had to jump out of my seat for that. I was like, 'What?'"

"We were all jumping around, hugging each other, high fives all around," Wilson said. "It was great, a good moment."

"We all started kind of running around the apartment screaming our heads off and stuff, because it was a pretty great shot," Bishop said.

The shot has made Lillard a fan favorite.

"After Lillard hit that shot, basically all our Lillard tees were gone," Bishop said. "We had to bring some in from other stores, but they were pretty much gone the next day."

This improbable run to the second round has fans on the edge of their seats, every night.

"Yeah, they're fun to watch," Wilson said. "No one thought they'd be this good this year, so they've proved a lot of people wrong so far."

If they can get by a tough San Antonio team -- and it was a tough first-game loss Tuesday night -- the Blazers Frenzy could grow even bigger.

"Go Blazers!" Robles said.

"Go blazers! Woo!" Wilson said.

Unfortunately, the Blazers weren't able to come up with the win Tuesday night, but keep hope alive: The last time they made the second round, they were able to win the series.

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