While doing the approval ratings, I was dismayed at how many times I’d put someone up for approval, and a wave of WHO???? would roll through the comments.

Maybe because I read, listen to and observed all their work almost each day, all the names I put up were very familiar to me, and I thought would be to most observers of the Boston sports scene.

This was part of the reason the approval ratings were discontinued, more and more it was becoming difficult to put up a name that I could be assured that most readers would be familiar with and thus be able to give a valid approve/disapprove. We went through around 75 media people, so that was certainly a good start.

Periodically, I’m going to spotlight some of the media types who didn’t make the approval ratings list. Hopefully this will increase their exposure to you a little bit so that you can be on the lookout for their work, or know a little something about them as you review something that they’ve done.


Today we’re going to spotlight longtime Quincy Patriot Ledger writer Mike Fine. If you don’t know who he is, you definitely should.

Fine’s time with the PL dates back to 1968 when he landed a co-op with Northeastern. He started with high schools, and then colleges before landing on the Boston Celtics beat in 1977. His first year was also the rookie year of Cedric Maxwell, and it was the last year for John Havlicek.

He was on the beat full time for 21 years, until the PL was sold, and the new owners switched to only home coverage of the team, which he has done for the last 10 years. All told, Fine has 31 years on the Celtics beat. 

In the offseasons Fine would serve as a columnist for the paper, and would also do quite a bit of Patriots coverage.

Since 1999 Fine has also covered the Red Sox for the paper.  Before the advent of WEEI, and shows such as Sports Final and Sports Xtra, Fine did a lot of radio and TV interviews, and did pregame reports on WRKO.

Since Gatehouse Media purchased the Patriot Ledger, the paper’s status has fallen immensely. Once boasting a sports staff of 18, the paper has now dropped all road coverage of the local teams, though Fine was in Detroit to cover the Eastern Conference Finals this season. He was not sent to Los Angeles to cover the NBA Finals, however.

If you’ve only been following the Boston sports scene for the last 15 years or so, you might have no idea who Mike Fine is, or how extensive his experience and background are.

Hopefully now you have a little better idea.


17 thoughts on “Who Are These Guys? – Mike Fine

  1. Nice job bringing folks like Fine to the forefront, Bruce. There are several writers in this market who toil in relative anonimity because they don’t show up on every media outlet.


  2. never afraid to confront bird back in the 80s. A great beat reporter and friend of board favorite, Mike Rotondi. A very large Approve!


  3. Thanks for the recommendation.

    The “who”s were getting a little old. You know what I did when I didn’t recognize the highlighted journalist? I didn’t vote and waited until there was someone I had an opinion on. Crazy concept.


  4. Captain Dunk,
    Exactly. Good way to put it. All the ‘who?’s were getting irritating. If they don’t know the person, people should just wait until a familiar writer/reporter/person is posted, then vote.


    1. well, let’s break this down….you log on to the BSMW site….you click on “comments”…..you see a few people posted, “WHO?”….and this got you all upset and “irritated”???…..good golly Miss Molly, I think someone needs some anger managment classes….let’s all take a deep breath


  5. I was hoping for guys like Mike Mutnansky, and Jon Rish to be spotlighted.

    Hopefully they’ll be spotlighted in this section.


  6. The Ledger has a number of good sportswriters who don’t get nearly the credit they deserve, on pro sports and preps. Fine is one of them — straight shooter, solid writer. Same goes for Eric McHugh, who does a great job on the Patritos beat.

    Too bad Gatehouse is handcuffing those writers with their cost-cutting ways.

    Approve of Fine. Disapprove of the Ledger’s owners.


  7. Fine is a solid veteran talent who knows his stuff. A classic writer from the old school who plays it straight and reports the facts. Love to see him add depth to the globes or heralds coverage. Should e scooped up by a bigger entity!


  8. Bird liked Fine because he heard he was too cheap to buy bags for his fallen leaves. He would just load up the back of his truck and “redistribute” them as he drove around.


  9. Mike Fine also was quoted frequently in Jack McCallum’s book on the ’91 Celtics, Unfinished Business. Maybe he hasn’t been a really visible local writer but he has been always been an astute, reliable reviewer of the C’s. Definite approve.


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