Bill Schonely joined the Portland Trail Blazers broadcasting staff way back in 1970 and he called the play-by-play for the team in 2,522 Blazers radio and television broadcasts from the very first preseason game in September 1970 all the way up until the team's appearance in the 1998 NBA Finals.
“The Schonz” was recognized for his great work in Sports broadcasting Thursday –He was awarded the 2012 Curt Gowdy Media Award by the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame.
Gowdy Media’s Press Release reads as follows:
The Gowdy Media Award is named in honor of legendary sports broadcaster and former Hall of Fame Board member and President, the late Curt Gowdy. The prestigious award is presented annually to members of the print and electronic media whose longtime efforts have made a significant contribution to the game of basketball.
A three-time winner of the Oregon Sportscaster of the Year award, Schonely was named Oregon Broadcaster of the Year in 1995. In 2002, Schonely was inducted into the Oregon Sports Hall of Fame. Prior to joining the Trail Blazers in 1970, Schonely called games for Major League Baseball's Seattle Pilots, National Hockey League's Oakland Seals, the Seattle Totems of the Western Hockey League and the University of Washington football team. In 2003, he was honored as Oregon's Sportscaster of the Year while calling games for the Portland Beavers.
NBA TV’s Rick Kamla had this to say about Schonely:
He's a living basketball legend in Oregon. As the founding broadcaster of the Portland Trail Blazers and the unofficial Mayor of Rip City, his 42 years of dedication to this franchise has made him one of the most recognizable and celebrated personalities in the history of the organization. His historic career includes calling well over 2,000 games, including the Trail Blazers' 1977 NBA championship. In addition, he's a member of the Oregon Sports Hall of Fame and one of the most engaged members of his community. Bingo - bango - bongo. Please join me in recognizing the 2012 Curt Gowdy Media Award, representing broadcast media, the Schonz, Bill Schonely.
Kerry Eggers joined Chad in the afternoon Thursday to talk about the incredible accomplishment. Here are his thoughts:
You can listen to the entire press conference here:
Congratulations Schonz. Rip City is luck to have such a great voice.