DKM Hockey Podcast

Thursday, June 7, 2012

In the immortal words of Nancy Kerrigan: WHY....

I got my first job in high school by virture of a neighbor who lived two houses down.  He was a retired journalist who owned a local Play it Again Sports franchise.  I was the only hockey player within 20 miles of his store, and hockey was starting to get popular in the area.  I was always stopping in to look for hockey equipment and next door was the “video game exchange.”  One day he sent a letter to the house asking me if I was interested in a job.  I accepted, and my first check two weeks later was for $28.  My mom still has a picture of it.

He was a good first boss to have.  I learned good things, I learned bad things, and I learned that italians listen to country music.  What I would come to learn was that my neighbor and boss was at one time the SID (Sports Information Director) at Marquette University and following that, a sports writer for the Milwaukee Sentinel.  He was a writer first - an English major with a masters in journalism.  He was never more than a participant in youth athletics, but was able to capture and articulate a unique, if not wry, perspective on sports.  He would tell some funny stories about the teams and sports he would cover, but he also gave some great insight into journalism itself.

However, he was always looking for a story, even if one wasn't there. He would try to turn, “Joe Montana bought a big mac” into “Joe Montana prospects at the chance to create a McDonalds empire.” He had little understanding of the professional or competitive athlete, and he often rubbed people the wrong way.  He was a gifted writer that didn't quite get athletes.  I honestly think he would have been a great political writer on the DC beat.
Today. Twitter is a buzz with John Davidson interviewing for an “Executive Position” with the Columbus Blue Jackets on May 29th.  He met with majority owner and team president to interview for something.  The pieces I’ve read paid no attention to what he interviewed for or why he interviewed for it.  Because really, ‘what’ and ‘why’ are as important today as teaching lawyers constitutional law. Oh, wait, no major law school requires constitutional law.  Anyways, any idiot with the internet and a camera phone can cover the ‘who’ and ‘where.’  If you have a friend somewhere in middle management you can sometimes find a link to the ‘how.’

But ‘who’ and ‘when’ is what grabs your attention while ‘what’ and ‘why’ are left in the wake of sports talk and blogging. Until I get what and why, any news is just fodder for junkies and bloggers (I realize I just made fun of myself).  Nothing gets #CBJ people excited like speculating what John Davidson will do with Rick Nash.  Of course, if we don’t know ‘what’ Davidson interviewed for or why people would assume he’d do anything with Nash?  Bloggers speculate what “bounty” the Jackets will get in return for one of the league’s highest cap hits belonging to the league’s perennial mid-30’s placed scorer.  We expect San Jose to sign free agents in the same manner the Blue Jackets operate their amateur draft – ignorantly.  There are suitors for Nash, certainly other teams looking to dump their ‘stuck in the mud’ contracts.  I feel it a little irresponsible to speculate what John Davidson would do with Rick Nash until we learn what he interviewed for and why.  Be then again, I don’t need to sell advertising space to feed the family.

I just read where John Davidson, long time broadcaster, would be the most important hire in Blue Jackets history. Why?

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