By Cesar Valdes
It’s become a skill in sports media: throw it on the wall and see if it sticks.
That’s the route that many of the top network’s ‘premiere analysts’ or ‘experts’ take when discussing topics and news in the world of sports.
National talking heads like Stephen A. Smith, Skip Bayless (both of whom were once columnist and reporters for newspapers), and many other lesser known loudmouths have all sold their journalistic soul to the Fake News Devil.
What they do on their own national platform is not educate their audience, like many local beat writers do. Actually what they really do is feed their audience spoonfuls of lies and fantasies.
So just how are Bayless and Smith able to be so informed on over 100 professional sport teams?
Well, they just aren’t.
There is no way a single human being can cover that many professional sport teams. Heck, it’s difficult as it is covering just one professional team.
Yet they talk about the athletes, front offices, and fan bases as if they’ve spent their entire professional career covering them. What’s even uglier is that the general public believes half the things that spew out of their mouths, rather than pay attention to a less dramatic report by a beat writer who spends nearly every single day of a teams’ regular season with that team.
Why? Because it’s fun!
I mean, why wouldn’t we want to hear the same “Dallas Cowboys will/could land this free agent” claim year after (I swear I’ve been hearing that for the past seven years).
The baseless claims that national pundits put out undermine the hard, unrewarding work that many local beat writers produce.
Beat writers are the ones who know how to connect the dots, they understand what the organization they’re covering may do because they talk to the players, coaches, general managers, and other sources with extensive knowledge every single day.
Some people choose not to listen to these beat writers because they don’t always agree with their fantasy dream of what is to come or they simply love the soap opera that comes with their antics.
Ultimately, if you want to be a knowledgeable fan of a team then follow a beat writer covering that team.