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Simmons on Boston beat writers ...

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by SheaSeals, Apr 13, 2007.

  1. sixthstjoe

    sixthstjoe New Member

    Simmons has plenty of talent, without question. But those 4,000-columns are adolescent diarhhea.
    He has no self-editing function.
    And he acts as if he's the first guy to come along and be edgy about the sports world and make pop-culture references.
    It's been done before and done better, in less space.
    You want funny and cutting? I'll take Scott Ostler, back in the day. I'll take Tony Kornheiser, back in the day. I'll take Norman Chad, today and tomorrow.
  2. If you believe history began in 1984, he's your man.
  3. RokSki

    RokSki New Member

    Well-said, unsurprisingly. :)
  4. dooley_womack1

    dooley_womack1 Well-Known Member

    The guy needs a better grip of the facts. These weren't grammar errors. These were errors indicating zilcho grasp of his subject. And ESPN likely has to accept whatever he gives them, per the juice he has for bringing whatever cachet he has to the WWL. And somehow, I think there have been zero e-mails saying "dammit, you short-changed us 1,000 words this week."
  5. RokSki

    RokSki New Member

    Dooley - very nicely done.

    I can't really see anyone feeling slighted on Bill's word count. :)
  6. Alma

    Alma Well-Known Member

    I'm going to try to play fair with you here...do you honestly think the "new columnist" is a guy who sits at home and watches events on TV, interviews no one (ever) and does relentless rip jobs without ever having to face his targets in person?

    My only request is this: Try looking at America from the perspective of a objective, adult human being, rather than some blog geek who comments on every national news story because they suck the teat of TV.

    See, 99% of columnists actually have cater to a local audience. They actually get a press pass, attend events, and speak to people. And then they have to write about events that local people care about. Such is the life.

    Ripping someone, as Simmons does Doc Rivers and all these beat writers, is not nearly so easy when you actually have to face the people you rip. Let's see him sit down with Rivers for an interview. Then let's see what he writes. As it stands, he's a coward.
  7. Michael_ Gee

    Michael_ Gee Well-Known Member

    Know who loves Bill? The owners of the Boston Celtics, that's who. Says a lot about the straight downhill progression of the franchise since they bought it.
  8. 93Devil

    93Devil Well-Known Member

    "See, 99% of columnists actually have cater to a local audience. They actually get a press pass, attend events, and speak to people. And then they have to write about events that local people care about. Such is the life."

    True. I am not saying what he is doing is right or wrong. I am just trying to look at it from another point of view.

    You mentioned getting a press pass and facing these people every day. Twenty years ago this was needed. You just could not get anything from local sports coverage. George Michael's Sports Machine was about all you had pre-Sportscenter. You barely even got that many pro games. I remember never seeing Golden State or the Clippers play when I was young. They were just not CBS's offering in the afternoon. AL baseball? Never unless it was the Game of the Week.

    Now, we have a staggering number of games to choose from. You can watch every game of a certain team if you wish. You do not need to live in the city or have a press pass to feel like you can see the maturation of a point guard or a starting pitcher fade. Before, you had to live in the city, and you had to be home when the game was played. Now with Tivo and sports packages you can watch every game with your own instant reply.

    So with all of this access, is a press pass needed? I know the answer is yes, but I'm guessing you had to think a moment before answering.

    You mentioned facing the person you write about. Does this stop you from writing something negative about them? Yes it does. Does he wield the sword a little to freely and get it a little too bloody sometimes? Yes he does. I would say these are the two extremes and the best possible answer lies between these extremes.

    Just looking at things with an open mind.
  9. playthrough

    playthrough Moderator Staff Member

    I didn't have to think a moment. You're equating the wrong things here, 93Devil, that the evolution of every-game-on-TV means print media irrelevancy. Yes, it probably means you're not opening the fishwrap in the morning needing to find out who won last night. But watching the games doesn't automatically replace the value of a solid written analysis which includes actual reporting, which involves actual talking to people. If you don't need that analysis anymore since you can watch all the games, and the TV guys' thoughts plus the 10-second post-game soundbites are enough for you, fine. You're a 21st-century sports fan. Not saying that with any sarcasm at all. But you can't say that how you process sports now makes the way it's been done for decades prior just irrelevant. I still say a press pass is pure gold in the hands of those who understand how to use it, and I always learn something from the best reporters out there even though I think I also can process a game fairly well just by watching.
  10. Nice post, Playthrough.

    It interests me to see how much reaction any thread here about Simmons gets. As I've written in other threads, I've given him a chance and don't care for him much. He writes waaaaaaaaaay too long -- arrogantly long -- and the payoff is not worth reading it. He's boring, to me.

    But that's beside the point. To me, he's another Mike and the Mad Dog -- uber-fans who turned into media creatures themselves and lost the aspect that made them appealing in the first place. Simmons found a niche that hadn't been filled, and he drew a big audience. Good for him.

    But now he's somewhat of a player, and I don't think he can get away with simply pontificating anymore. I think he's lazy. Lupica gets drilled here for writing columns from the couch, and some of the criticism is deserved. To compare the two, though, is ridiculous.

    Lupica has a long body of work (if not literally a long body ;) ) and is the sports columnist for a top-flight publication. What has Simmons done to warrant top-flight status? He hasn't grown at all. He wants to reap the benefit of something he hasn't earned.

    I'm sure he'll read this and say, "Oh, another person jealous of my success." I'm too old for that. I just wish he'd get the point that the sands on his hourglass are running out quickly, and he's not the mastermind he thinks.
  11. 93Devil

    93Devil Well-Known Member

    Very interesting posts.

    I think his real draw is somehow he has captured the feeling that this is a guy who is sitting on the couch with you yelling at the tv just as much as the average sports fan. He has cornered that market very well.

    He also has very good taste in music and TV. That cannot be underestimated. As a 30-something myself. I find that many of his recommendations in tv and music I agree with. Not all, but most.
  12. dooley_womack1

    dooley_womack1 Well-Known Member

    Yeah, Olivier is weeping in heaven that he didn't live long enough to beat out Pat Morita for the Miyagi role.
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