On Friday, Dan Steinberg posted about Ted Leonsis’ proclivity for blogging about the Caps’ injury woes. He told the story through Leonsis’ words and debunked it with data showing the Caps’ health to be league-average.
On Saturday, Leonsis posted about Steinberg’s post, tearing the Washington Post sports department a new asshole:
Even though court stenographer Dan Steinberg disagrees, losing key players is tough on a team and its offense. I, too, am shocked at how many shutouts we have experienced this season. The Washington Post lost George Solomon, Tony Kornheiser and Michael Wilbon to retirement and free agency and the sports department hasn’t been the same since – not as many points on the board – but they have lost about the same amount of people as most newspapers these days. Rim shot.
Kornheiser and Wilbon haven’t put “points on the board” for the Post since the Caps moved away from Landover. Using Leonsis’ pretzel logic, you could rejigger his statement to read:
The Washington [Capitals] lost [Olaf Kolzig, Peter Bondra and Adam Oates] to retirement and free agency and the [team] hasn’t been the same since – not as many [wins in the playoffs] – but they have lost about the same amount of people as most [franchises] these days. Rim shot.
That isn’t to say I prefer the Caps of yore to today’s. Quite the opposite, actually. I also prefer today’s Post sports vs. yesteryear’s. It may not feature glory hog columnists like the PTI two, but it does have a stable of reporters who not only write stories for print but also blog on the website and tweet real-time updates. That stable includes Steinberg, the so-called court stenographer who is a top online sportswriting talent.
I like Leonsis. His high level of transparency is to be encouraged, as is his forward-thinking approach to ownership as a whole, from the ice/hardwood to the web, community and beyond. I also applaud his willingness to mix it up with fans and the media alike.
Along those lines, this isn’t the first time Leonsis has taken a shot at the Post, though it probably is the most personal one. If one were so inclined, one could string together a narrative of Leonsis’ Post-bashing that would look similar to what Steinberg did with Leonsis’ injury moans.
But why bother? Everyone knows print media is a dying industry and pro sports is not. Pointing that out — over and over again — isn’t transparency, it’s petulance.
Disclosures: I’m friends with Steinberg, and we co-hosted the Blog Show together on Comcast SportsNet. I also have great respect for Leonsis as an Internet Hall of Famer, and he was my boss’ boss’ boss’ boss’ boss at AOL.