The giddy, young Blazers are playoff bound and spirits are so high in the Blazers’ locker room, they’re giving beat reporters nicknames.  From the Oregonian’s Jason Quick (above, right):

I ask (Martell) Webster about his shoes, which now carry the inscription “Crazy 8”. He says it’s because Kobe Bryant’s old Crazy 8 adidas shoes were his favorite.

“Oh no, look,” Webster says to Roy. “He’s writing it down …”

Is that not OK, I ask.

“No, it’s cool … Quicksand,” Webster says. “That’s my new name for you. Quicksand: Once you fall into it, you can’t get out.”

That is when several players start chiding me while letting me know I got someone on the team in “trouble” with something I wrote in an earlier Behind the Locker Room Door. It’s not a big deal by any means, and the player doesn’t want me to reveal his name, but it’s another lesson in fully weighing what I can and can’t write with these guys.

And it sparked a conversation between myself and five of the players about the media, during which some shared horror stories of writers crossing the line when it came to their personal lives.

In these situations, I try to help educate the players as much as I can about the media. In the past, I’ve discussed how writers don’t write the headlines. How deadlines or space limitations sometimes compromise the quality and/or thoroughness of a story.

And I’ve agreed with them when I think people in our profession are wrong. Like the ones who criticize and take shots and but never come to practice or into the locker room to face the music. The ones who take shots without bothering to ask them their viewpoint on the matter. The ones who write a story without getting both sides.

As usual, Quick makes some terrific points, but neglects to mention which Portland rookie — Greg Oden or Jerryd Bayless has been carrying his bags this season.