VOL. 131 | NO. 36 | Friday, February 19, 2016
Last Word: The Trade, Hardaway-Todd Grudge Match and Tomato Aspic
By Bill Dries
Jeff Green leaves the Grizzlies for the Clippers and Lance Stephenson leaves the Clippers for the Grizzlies.
That was the trade at the NBA’s Thursday afternoon deadline that caused much of Thursday’s deadline buzz as well as lots of social media reaction.
Some of the reaction was tempered by the other part, a protected lottery pick for the Grizz as well.
The Beale Street Tourism Development Authority has settled into a steady meeting place at the Memphis Grizzlies front office Downtown after starting last year in various venues on Beale Street itself.
That included The Band Box bar with the word “Liquor” in big neon letters over the table where the board met and the side room at Silky O’Sullivan’s.
Then there was the meeting room of the Beale Street Merchants Association overlooking a patio cover band that drown out most of one of the monthly meetings.
The Grizzlies office Thursday was an otherwise busy place with the NBA trade deadline still in full reaction mode by the time the Beale group opened its 4:30 p.m. meeting.
A flat-screen television just outside the meeting room door flashed constant reviews of the trade action up to the earlier trade deadline including word of the Jeff Green trade.
The Green-Stephenson trade was the highlight of the coverage since ESPN broke the story.
Grizzlies president of business operations Jason Wexler is also chairman of the Beale authority and broke away from the trade deadline aftermath to lead a brief meeting of the authority that came in at less than a half hour.
With the light agenda, Jeff Sanford, a consultant to the group, found the temptation too much to resist and asked for an update on the trade deadline just passed.
“No comment,” Wexler swiftly and even replied, which prompted several other questions – all batted away by Wexler.
In Nashville at the end of the legislative week Thursday, two members of the Shelby County delegation had to be physically separated on the House floor during the debate over a bill that would make it more difficult for local governments to remove monuments like the statue of Nathan Bedford Forrest in what is now named Health Sciences Park.
Here is the Associated Press story on the legislation.
The Nashville Scene story recounts the events between Democratic state Rep. G.A. Hardaway and Republican state Rep. Curry Todd.
It includes a link to video from Nashville's Channel 2 that begins as a backdrop to remarks State Rep. Joe Towns is attempting to make.
Some different voter turnout numbers between the Shelby County Election Commission and the Tennessee Secretary of State’s office in the countywide early voter turnout totals so far.
The difference is 35 votes, votes in the Republican presidential primary apparently.
Nevertheless, both sets of totals show early voting through Wednesday was more than 7,600 citizens.
The Clinton presidential campaign opened its local headquarters Thursday evening just down Poplar Avenue from the local Sanders campaign headquarters which is also on Poplar Avenue and the Clinton supporters got some advice from Memphis Cong. Steve Cohen.
A closer look, as promised here Wednesday evening, at Vice President Joe Biden’s visit to the Memphis area this week that focuses on Biden’s light political touch and his focus on the theme of rebuilding the middle class.
Politico offers a view of Biden’s remarks across all three of the stops, including Memphis, that Michael Grunwald sees as what a Biden campaign for president could look like.
The next campaign event you go to, take a look at the press section in the back. Not much to look at and not a whole lot of activity that is apparent. Some in this business even question why you need so many news outlets covering the same set of remarks over and over again on a campaign tour of several stops a day for months at a time.
We all see the same thing at a basic level. But we view it through different contexts based on other reporting we’ve done away from the campaign trail. The result is different perspectives that offer a broader view.
To the point of a Biden campaign, Cohen was on hand during Biden’s visit to introduce him.
And the next day at the opening of the local Clinton campaign, Cohen praised Hillary Clinton’s ability to lead, adding “There is no one other than possible the Vice President who is more prepared to become president.”
On the minority business front, new data from EDGE on contracts with minority businesses from firms who have received tax breaks from EDGE.
Our story includes some early reviews of the EDGE numbers and another indication that at the end of March there will likely be several competing or at least differing proposals on the table to change minority business goals currently in place.
Don Wade on two final scores from this week’s Tigers basketball game at the Forum -- the win on the court for the Tigers and the attendance numbers after the pregame push by the university to fill the seats.
It is an interesting moment in a city where there has been a revival of Memphis boosterism of all types across the board. There has also been much discussion more recently about the nature of that boosterism and its intersection with the premium on reality that is an essential element of what it means to be of Memphis.
Dan Conaway’s Memphasis column is on a Memphis institution, the Calvary Waffle Shop and the mysteries of tomato aspic.
The Waffle Shop is up and running for another Lenten season in a Downtown where church bells still ring. And voices raised in sacred song and deep contemplation of a civilization’s timeless pursuits fill the high ceilings of sanctuaries becoming ever more ancient by the days of our modern lives. And ever more vital.