“You aren’t here to by my buddy, hang in my entourage or take pictures with me. Your job is to be a professional and report what you see regardless if I like it or not. I might not like it, but I’ll respect you and respect is more important than being a groupie posing as a journalist.”
Bernard Hopkins to me in 2009.
Unfortunately, many reporters didn’t get the memo. They want to be the athletes’ buddy, they want to be in the entourage and they want to be the life.
This isn’t just new reporters, it is old reporters as well. They have their male crushes and don’t even try to hide their affection for them.
Take Jets beat writer Manish Mehta, who is seemingly is obsessed with protecting the image of Mark Sanchez. Sanchez had a couple of bad plays in practice and some fans booed. It isn’t the end of the world, they didn’t threaten to harm his family or throw out a racial slur. They booed, it shouldn’t even be a story, but Mehta decide to call those fans the following things in a column.
“Classless,” “self-loathing,” “crude”, “obnoxious” and a few more things.
What sealed Mehta groupie behavior is he ran to Mark Sanchez to get his approval for having his back and here is what Sanchez said.
“Hey, you’re preaching to the choir.”
Mission accomplished, now Mehta can sit by the phone and hope Sanchez invites him to his next house party. It’s one thing to casually give your opinion that you don’t think fans should boo at practice, but it is a totally another thing to get on your high horse and call someone classless, because you want to kiss up to Mark Sanchez and the Jets.
Beat writers get upset when you call them homers, but maybe if they didn’t act like a basketball wife, we wouldn’t. Do your job, stop trying to be Mase to Sanchez’s Puffy and show some class yourself, because the only obnoxious person I see is you.