If you had any smidgen of doubt that ESPN is involved in a high-level effort to smear the New England Patriots, this should clear things up for you.
Mike Reiss, as a solid and principled a reporter as there is, had his worked censored by ESPN yesterday (sorry, they say they applied a “tighter edit”) because Reiss dared to inject a bit of common sense and sanity into the ridiculous NFL-sanctioned hitjob that the network published Tuesday morning.
This is how Reiss’ article originally appeared:
And after ESPN’s censor, I mean “edit” this is how it appeared:
Original points four and seven were completely removed from the article.
Mike Reiss has a conscience, does his job incredibly well, and is truly objective in his reporting, (the notion that he is the “fifth Kraft son” is beyond moronic) and has already been subjected to having his work diluted by the addition of anything Patriots-related, no matter how silly, from the ESPN information stream to his blog.
The network already tried to attach Reiss’ byline to a blurb that painted Tom Brady’s statement last week as an apology to the NFL for deflategate.
— Barstool Sports (@barstoolsports) September 8, 2015
With all of this going on, it makes me wonder whether we’ll be seeing Reiss move on at some point in the not-to-distant future (pure speculation by me) and take his considerable audience with him.
Which would be a shame. ESPN would’ve driven off the man who essentially created the art of blogging the NFL beat, and who brought methods and post styles that have been imitated all across ESPN, not just in the NFL beat, but on others as well.
What’s worse is that ESPN is openly showing that it will not tolerate any criticism from within itself (there is no more ombudsman at the network) and is willing to do the bidding of the NFL.
Chris Mortensen’s tweet never received a “tighter edit.” Nor did that Tuesday Outside The Lines report, despite plenty of areas where it could’ve been.
I’ve heard rumblings this summer that Tedy Bruschi has been furious at ESPN, and his noticeable absence from the airwaves during the Federal Court case was no coincidence. Either he refused to come on the air and spout the company lines, or they didn’t want to put him on because they knew he’d be critical of the league. Even when Bruschi returned last week, Bob Ley kept openly questioning Bruschi’s ability to be objective when talking about Tom Brady and the Patriots.
Yes, ESPN was worried about objectivity.
On a similar vein, I even wonder about the future of Adam Schefter on ESPN, after Roger Goodell, Troy Vincent and the NFL have repeatedly lied about Schefter’s continued and unwavering reports that the NFL is behind the suspensions of John Jastremski and Jim McNally.
Earlier this year, Schefter called into an Outside the Lines show and blew up an on-air story by Kelly Naqi who was attempting to report the storyline that the Patriots tried to introduce an illegal kicking ball in the game. Schefter broke in to report that an NFL employee had actually stolen a football from the game with the intention of selling it and replaced it with another football which was the one that was attempted to be put into the game. Funny how that story has completely gone away, huh?