Chron’s Jonathan Feigen talks Houston Rockets and Golden State Warriors; a tribute to Prince; Michael Quinn Sullivan of Empower Texans

Welcome to this, the 40th episode of The Weekly Brew podcast. We welcome in Jonathan Feigen, Houston Chronicle Rockets beat writer since 1998, Michael Quinn Sullivan of Empower Texans and pay tribute to Prince.

Feigen turns in one of the saltier, more energetic performances we’ve had from a guest on the show, breaking down just what exactly is ailing these Rockets, amassing only 41 wins one season removed from their Western Conference Finals run. Feigen analyzes the roster, including who will be around next season, who will not, and whether the Rockets have a shot at any big-name free agents. Also, with Tom Thibodeau with the Timberwolves and Scott Brooks with the Wizards, the Rockets’ search for a coach is heating up, and Jeff Van Gundy is the name everyone is batting around.

Next, conservative apparatchik Michael Quinn Sullivan, of Empower Texans and Texans for Fiscal Responsibility, joins us to discuss what on earth is going on in the Republican party, why Donald Trump has been able to so easily seduce right-wing voters with his xenophobic, racist and misogynist rhetoric and what, exactly, it means to be a conservative, and what it maybe ought to mean.

This episode is dedicated to the memory of “Too Many Hits” Prince, who sadly passed away this week, and who will be remembered for his unparalleled catalogue of hits and his innumerable charitable contributions.

We here at The Weekly Brew want your help. It has been weeks since a listener has left us a review on iTunes. We crave them. In fact, if you leave a review on iTunes, Kevin will read it word for word (within reason – it’s a family-friendly show, per Austin’s insistence) on the air to thousands of people. You can be (sort of) famous, just for going to iTunes, subscribing to the podcast, and clicking Ratings and Reviews to leave us a nice, little 5-star review with a blurb.

As always, thanks for listening, and remember: no matter who you are, where you go or what you do, always brew responsibly.

Oscar predictions; NBA trade deadline; Power hour with YouTube star Ali Spagnola

In an exciting week for The Weekly Brew, we welcome in Vince Ellis of the Detroit Free Press and Preachin Pistons podcast, Hollywood-insider Dave Morales of BackstageOL.com and Fox 26 and YouTube star Ali Spagnola.

First, we dive into the NBA Trade Deadline action with Ellis, who breaks down the recent trade between the Pistons and Rockets which sent fan-favorite Donatas Motiejunas and streak-shooter Marcus Thornton to Detroit and brought back a first-round draft pick for Houston. Ellis, as a guy who watches Andre Drummond day in and day out, has some understandably strong feelings about the “Hack-a” strategy that Houston fans have come to know and hate.

Morales, fresh off nailing every one of his Grammy predictions, brings his hot hand to the podcast, sharing his predictions for the major Oscar categories. If you’re a degenerate gambler (and we know some of you are), bet the farm on his picks, and thank us later. He discusses the growth of Leonardo DiCaprio, an old party buddy, and breaks down his recent chat with Morgan Freeman in advance of London Has Fallen.

Finally, we welcome in YouTube sensation Ali Spagnola – comedienne, musician (musicienne?) and quasi-polymath. She discusses her battles in trademark law, her One-Gal Band projects and is just generally charming and clever all-through.

As always, we appreciate you listening – and this week, we especially appreciate iTunes subscriber Ghouliesrox who left us a terrific 5-star review. You could very easily be our favorite listener next week – just go to iTunes, click Subscribe and then click Ratings and Reviews and leave us a nice, little 5-star review with a blurb, and you’ll get a shout out on next week’s show.

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