As I have been gently reminded by 'concerned' parties (Andrew "I love the fans" Folkner), the blog has been bereft of activity as of late. But have no fear, I've spent the last month watching NBA and NCAA basketball, preparing myself to dole out nuggets of knowledge to best prepare you for the undercard (March Madness) and the main event (NBA Playoffs) coming up. But, before we get into that, let's spend some time on some things that have grinded my gears over the last month:
Reporters Jumping the Gun: I get why it happens. In this 24 hour news cycle that has evolved, everyone wants to be the first to break a story. I get that. The ESPN news ticker even ascribes information based on who gets the story emailed in first. There are three specific examples that have caught my eye over the past month, a best case, bad case, and worst case.
Best case: The Cleveland Plains Dealer broke word that Joe Smith would be signing with the Cavaliers before negotiations were finished. While anyone who follows the Association could see that coming, the newspaper broke this report while the final paper work was being ironed out, and Smith's people were seriously considering a competing offer from the Lakers (which might tell you what they think about Bynum's chances to return this year, but that's a whole nother thing). Sure, the Cavs ended up signing Joe Smith, and the paper didn't have egg on it's face, but there are other ways for this to play.
Bad case: The Atlanta Journal Constitution (beacon of news that it is) reported earlier this year that Ken Griffey Jr. would be joining the Braves, and attempt to be an everyday outfielder for the squad. Less than 24 hours later, word came from Seattle people that Griffey was coming home. Did the paper cause Griffey to back out? Was this an overzealous writer (and editor(s)) trying to 'scoop' a big signing? What really gets me is that there was no accountability, no call for any one to explain this mess up, and I know what you're thinking: it's just one time with a player signing, what's the big deal?
Worst case: During the coverage of the tragedy off the Florida coast, where three men lost their lives, hundreds of news outlets were covering the search and rescue efforts. After nearly 40 hours, a man was found clinging to an overturned craft. Minutes later, a soon-to-be debunked report had the workers also finding another man nearby. Is this the same as being wrong on a signing? Hell no. But, it is symptomatic of the same problem, and the result was the same: no one being held to a journalistic standard. Bullshit.
The David Beckham Situation: Actually, the less said here, the better.
The NBA's Burgeoning Financial Woes: It's already been said by someone with a larger audience than me (Bill Simmons). Though, I was out to lunch with someone like 4 days before this column ran , and I made the same points. Thus proving that I am some sort of sports genius. Or that I have my eyes open. Whatever.
Spring Training/The World Baseball Classic: Wow, the Dutch beat the Dominican Republic in an event where I couldn't name the prize if you paid me. Is it bad that during the Venezuela (I think)/USA game Saturday night, I was sitting with my friends Dallas and Justin, and we had a 25 minute debate as to where these games were actually taking place? Our final verdict was a tie between The Twilight Zone, the 'Lost' island, and The Land of the Lost. Is it also bad that our subsequent hour long debate as to which is the best television series of the three was infinitely more entertaining than the game itself?
Tiger Woods' Comeback, ARod's Karma, Jay Cutler vs. The Broncos, T.O. Trapped in Buffalo: Oh, no wait. I love all of these. Seriously, if any one of those four were a reality show, nothing could stop me from watching. Nothing.
Ok, there it is. I'm done bitching. For now. Now, back to your regularly scheduled blog that will be posted in a more timely manner for all to see and enjoy.