I singled out WEEI and the Boston Herald this morning for their sensationalistic and doomsday coverage of Tom Brady’s knee situation.
I should’ve also mentioned that I’m pleased with the even-handed way the Boston Globe has covered the matter. Yesterday, when WEEI was “reporting” every 20 minutes that the Patriots were upset with Brady for choosing a West coast doctor, the Globe never published that rumor on Boston.com. I applaud them for that.
Their coverage of the infection in Brady’s knee has been similarly even-keeled. The piece by Shira Springer this morning pointed out that “When doctors wash out a septic joint, a similar action often must be done two or three times to help clear out the infection.”
This is a change from most reports that just hysterically report that Brady needed multiple procedures to clear out the infection. Springer’s report points out that flushing the wound multiple times is a common practice when there is an infection. (Though I’m a little unclear about the comment about his return being delayed a couple months in the “best case” scenario.) The Reiss’ Pieces blog has only devoted one post to Brady’s knee condition in the last couple of days, and it was a post this morning pointing readers to comments by Dr James Andrew in the Los Angeles Times this morning which indicates that Brady is winning the infection battle.
Contrast that with this headline banner on WEEI.com:
I got an email from WEEI.com this morning pointing out that the screaming headline was an actual quote from the Doctor in the report.
“What will probably have to happen is that they will have to go in, remove everything–including the screws, everything—because everything has to be sterile and clean for (the repair) to take,” Kremchek said.
What does that mean in terms of timetable?
“Next year, I have to think, is seriously in doubt,” Kremchek said.
Now it becomes clearer why so many people are concerned.
“His career could be in jeopardy,” Kremchek said.
OK, so Dr Kremcheck did say Brady’s career could be in jeopardy.
In the Worst Case scenario.
If you read the Doctor’s comments in the report, his opinion is quite different from what others have said about the situation. More pessimistic, for sure.
WEEI.com chose to run with this approach to the story. The “worst case” angle, and play it up accordingly. That’s their perogative, and they likely will get a few more people to click over to the story by doing it that way.
Ron Borges in the Herald also chose to run with the worst case scenario, comparing Brady’s situation with a boxer who had surgery from the same Doctor that Brady did, and who never returned to the ring.
I’ll take the cautious, even-keeled reports in the Globe yesterday and today over the panic-mongering style shown in this incident by WEEI.com and the Herald any day.