Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Where's the integrity in sports journalism?

Hey Peeps and anyone else checking in. A special "Hey" goes out to Hazel Mae if she is checking in.

Integrity - noun
1) firm adherence to a code of especially moral or artistic values - incorruptibility
2) an unimpaired condition - soundness
3) the quality or state of being complete or undivided - completeness

Source: Merriam-Webster’s online dictionary.

Integrity is a buzzword in the world of sports - with the sports media often putting themselves in the position of judge and jury. They are quick to report/sensationalize any act or event that calls into question someone’s integrity, the integrity of their achievement, or the integrity of the game as a whole. We should all be very thankful that these bastions of truth and righteousness are there for us each and every day when we open up the sports pages of our local papers or visit our favourite websites - ready to tell us all about who has crossed the line.

Funny thing though - they aren’t nearly as quick to jump on one of their own for a transgression that calls into question the integrity of their profession.

"It was my intention only to report accurately on what transpired during the pregame warmup," he said. "Based on Mr. Avery's clear statement that he made no such remarks, my information and therefore my reporting does not appear to have been accurate. I truly regret reporting that Mr. Avery made any such comments. I apologize to Mr. Avery for having done so. And I hereby retract my comments about what transpired during the pregame warmup on Nov. 10, 2007."

With that 46-second radio address - Howard Berger of the Fan 590 issued an apology to New York Rangers pest Sean Avery after reporting that Avery had instigated a pre-game confrontation with Toronto forwards Jason Blake and Darcy Tucker by making a “cancer-related” remark to Blake. Berger was adamant that Avery had said something and was on sports-radio stations across the country, and his own -the FAN 590, talking non-stop about the incident. It was a welcome three days for members of Leaf Nation that didn’t have to listen to the arrogant donkey spew his venom, under the auspices of “objective journalism”, towards the Maple Leafs. Sean Avery threatens a lawsuit against the FAN-590 and Berger - and Howard immediately offers up and apology/retraction.

Our question is - where is the media on this? Why aren’t they all over Berger for what amounts to a lie? Certainly he has no integrity for making a bold statement the day after a game only to retract it a few weeks later. Why isn’t he being publicly grilled? (will it come later this week?) Why aren’t his colleagues demanding that he be fired immediately…like they do with coaches, managers or other executives? Could it be that they have all done the same thing at least once in their careers without being called on it?

Things that make you go hmmmmm.

We split last night - thanks to the Rangers no-show at MSG the total for the week stands at - $65. Tonight’s suggestions:

Detroit over Montreal - two teams going in opposite directions. The Habs won’t be able to rely on phantom penalty calls tonight, not against a fast and disciplined Wings team - they are going to have to earn it. All this to say they go down like a plate of hot wings at half time of the Super Bowl. Lay $100 on the Wings - $140.

St. Louis over Calgary - the Flames have been very beatable at home this year and the Blues have been one the pleasant surprises in the league this year. Upset special tonight at the Saddledome. Lay $100 on the Blues + $110.

We’d suggest taking the Maple Leafs and Lightning (over the Tards) but you’d just say we were going with our heart. But both will win tonight.

That’s it for today gang - thanks for taking the time to check in.

Hazel, we hope things are groovy in your world.

We’re Out!


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