In[a] 1958, Gene Spathas told his girlfriend, Claudia, that if she married him, he’d “put her name up in lights.” She said yes, and he followed through on his promise, opening the now-iconic Claudia’s Sports Pub & Grill. But her name made it onto more than just a tavern sign. It ended up festooned across the jerseys of the Claudia’s basketball team, which, thanks to a cast of scrappy players and a fiery coach, dominated Portland’s AAU basketball scene from 1963 to 1985. The Trail Blazers had yet to exist, so the tavern-sponsored Claudia’s was the source of pride and entertainment for Portland’s basketball-loving populace. The team may have since hung up its jerseys, but Claudia’s Pub continues to win the hearts of locals with the same communal spirit that originally made it an essential part of Portland’s rich sports scene.