Hockey Blogging, Mistakes, and Suck-Ups

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Posted June 25, 2011

Here’s a rundown of the situation.

1) Bloggers Angie Lewis and former Capitals Outsider contributor Keara Dowd wrote an article for the Hockey Writers titled: “Fancy This: Jaromir Jagr to… Washington?

The headline on its own can be misconstrued as a rumor, but the article is clearly a list of pros and cons of Jagr coming back to D.C. which ultimately sides with the cons. Contemplating whether a team should pick up a certain free agent is common for sports bloggers to tackle.

2) Capitals owner Ted Leonsis, a man who we have great respect for, saw the headline, almost certainly didn’t read much beyond that, and dismissed the ‘author’ as ‘Fiction writer, not hockey writer.’ Keep in mind, there are two writers for this article with labels on who wrote which paragraph. How much attention could he have possibly been paying if he used ‘writer’ instead of ‘writers’?

Mr. Leonsis, to us, is the greatest owner in sports when it comes to supporting new media. However, like anyone, he is capable of making mistakes and having knee-jerk reactions to rumors and opinions surrounding his teams. Blogs, Facebook and Twitter allow people to more quickly react to things, which can be both a blessing and a curse. Michael Hoffman at The Examiner wrote a great article about Mr. Leonsis’s recent history with his critics, which includes this incident.

3) Soon after, SBNation blogger Danny Fersh wrote an article titled, “Ted Leonsis Smacks Down Writer Who Suggests Jaromir Jagr Should Return To Washington Capitals.

Obviously, neither Fersh, nor his editor who is listed as Mike Prada, looked at the article in question beyond the headline – the same mistake Mr. Leonsis made. Fersh goes on to congratulate Mr. Leonsis for his bluntness and calls him a ‘pretty awesome blogger.’

For what? For calling out a ‘writer’ for recklessly spreading a rumor that Jaromir Jagr will become a Washington Capital again? Newsflash: That never happened.

To top this off, Fersh then writes: “We here at SB Nation love it when other blogs make us look good by comparison.”

Touché, SBNation.