Gerry Callahan is fearless.
Only he has the integrity to call out NASCAR and shine a light on the fact that its biggest event of the year was fixed.
This morning he insisted that there was an arrangement in place to ensure that Danica Patrick finished in the top 10. He said that other racers were instructed not to bump her car and that the neon green paint of the car assisted other drivers in letting her have the position. He stated that it’s really all about the car, and Danica was provided with a car that guaranteed a top-10 finish, and was surrounded by a gifted team which really was responsible for the showing. Danica, he said, isn’t a very good driver, and that this was simply a reward by NASCAR for all that she has done for the sport.
When asked by Kirk Minihane if he was joking, Callahan repeated his points.
OK then. WEEI, once again on the cutting edge. Clearly they’re about to turn this ratings thing around.
How long can the three-man morning last? Things are going to come to a head soon there. It’s inevitable. Maybe that was the plan all along.
Last week I railed on the combine, questioning why outlets send their whole crews out there. I guess I was speaking from the reader/viewer perspective, as the experience is largely useless from that standpoint. For the media, it’s an important networking event. They meet executives, agents, other media people, form relationships, groom sources. It lays a foundation for future material. The player stuff is largely an afterthought.
All that said, the best column from the combine that I’ve read was a Friday feature from Tom E Curran:
It is a fascinating look at the grilling Ryan Mallett received at the combine two years, and is especially interesting in light of the session from Manti Te’o from this year’s combine.
Media types like Mike Florio and Jason Cole come off as complete asses in the story. They kill Mallett for talking to the media about the drug rumors around him, as Mallett said he would only talk about that subject with the teams that he met with. A perfectly reasonable stance. Why in the world would he talk to the media about it? Yet, Cole and Florio (and others) come off as entitled, whiny, self-appointed guardians of the gate. Some interesting stuff from Mallett’s agent and also from Gil Brandt, who suggests that agents routinely start smear campaigns at these events to hurt players who might be in competition with their own clients for draft position.
Dan Shaughnessy’s last seven columns:
- It’s hard to get excited about these Red Sox
- How much like J.D. is Stephen Drew?
- Ben Cherington merits blame too
- Red Sox put all the blame on Bobby Valentine
- No chance Jacoby Ellsbury is staying with Red Sox
- Downsized expectations for Red Sox’ Mike Napoli
- Carl Crawford, Adrian Gonzalez still complaining about Boston
Anyone sense a pattern here?
I understand low expectations for this team. But these are the stories that “represent the interests of the fan?” (as Dan claims that the media does.)
Hard not to be impressed with the job Brian Scalabrine does on the game broadcasts. He’s good. His insight into the makeup of the team, and his ability to interpret the moves of Doc Rivers is outstanding. It’s even on little things. He mentioned on Friday and last night about Rivers playing newcomers Terrence Williams and Jordan Crawford at the same time. Initially you might think it would be tough to have two guys who just joined the team on the floor at the same time. Scalabrine pointed out that in the past, when new guys would join the team, Rivers and the coaching staff would show them just a few plays at a time in the walk-through or practice, so that in the game, they would know the same plays. They would both be at the same level. Small things, but an interesting insight into the workings of the club.
I also enjoyed Cedric Maxwell’s calm, patient smackdown of Michael Felger in this CSNNE video. Felger starts out demanding to know what happened to Danny Ainge’s “sack” and goes downhill from there.
Predictably, Dennis and Callahan also hated Lee Jenkins’ feature on Rajon Rondo in Sports Illustrated, mostly because it was positive. They hated that it made him look like a great point guard and didn’t portray him as a selfish assist-seeking punk, and that it didn’t run down all the flaws in his game, like that he cannot shoot at all.