"I met this girl, when I was ten years old
And what I loved most she had so much soul" - Common, I used to Love H.E.R.
The first two lines apply to what the Honest Man is about to discuss today. But before we go into that, let's talk about why we are here. Lebron James. Bron Bron. King James. The L train. The Savior. Rightfully so, he is the biggest NBA free agent this summer and my personal opinion, the biggest one since Shaquille O'Neal became one in 1996. Unrightfully so, there has been WAY too much coverage of tracking his free agent moves. Sports sites creating Lebron Trackers. Sports reporters swapping their unborn kids for the right to say where Lebron is going. It's like watching a fat kid at a buffet. Absolutely disgusting.
The latest news is Lebron is going to announce his decision in a primetime special via ESPN. I don't even need to look at the TV guide to know it will be a bunch of cats either guessing or interviewing Lebron up until the last 5 mins of the show, when Bron Bron says "I'm signing with (insert team)." Do I blame James for some of this stupidity? Partially. So who do you blame Honest Man? I blame the media. I've been mortified at how much time they are giving this. Of course, unlike the '96, the Internet is in full bloom so everyone's got an opinion. In some ways, I'm part of the whore group as I'm doing a blog on this but hey my voice has got to be heard.
If you looking for me to talk more about where is James playing next season, you need to stop reading. This is the Honest Man's rant on ESPN, the ultimate culprit in all this marketing bullshit. For those that can remember, think back to when ESPN was first getting started. They had 4 30 minute shows airing in the morning, lunch, early evening, and late evening. That was it. For sports reporters besides Rome's first (and failed) show, Up Close, and Sports Reporters on Sunday, that was it. This was in the late 80s and early 90s. Along the way ESPN had a transformation. Kinda like those nerdy looking chicks in those cheesy sitcoms that start off the episode looking homely, then transform into a Meagan Fox by show's end. ESPN became a Meagan Fox when Y2K started. And like Meagan Fox, they kinda let the success get to their head....
Today, ESPN shows 1 hr shows starting at 5am EST which repeat until noon. Add in a 6pm show and a 10pm show, that's 7 hrs of sports reporting. Daily. Also add in the sports reporting show block of Jim Rome, Around the Horn, Pardon the Interruption, from 4 to 6 daily, that's another 2 hrs. Oh don't forget ESPN 2 got upgraded and now has Mike and Mike, First Take, and Colin Cowherd's show. That's another 7 hours of sports reporting. Oops can't forget ESPN News. See where I'm going. These mofos are EVERYWHERE. And when you have that much programming, you have to have relevant news to discuss. The keyword is relevant and ESPN has appeared to lose understanding of that.
Forget the latest debacle. They have been doing What the Fuck stuff for a minute. For me that What the Fuck moment started when they decided to nationally televise high school football and basketball games. I mean it was hard enough to get these games locally and then BAM ESPN was all over the place. Then they took it a step further and used their ESPNU channel to dedicate a day to HIGH SCHOOL KIDS announcing what college they would attend to play football. So technically I shouldn't be like What the Fuck about the Lebron signing but yet I am.
Seriously, What the Fuck happened to you guys? I used to love getting home from school and watching legendary combos like Dan Patrick/Keith Olbermann and Stuart Scott/Rich Eisen do their shows (who can forget the latter doing "Vlade vlade we likes to party"). Now it's just a shell of its' former self. They have their moments but for the most part, a good number of the anchors and reporters are out to make a name for themselves so they are doing overreporting and a lot of stupid "zany" shit to attract a following.
This is the world we live in. Folks are out to do what they can for self and the almighty dollar. Everyone's got a source on what superstar athlete is doing. Now even the athlete's entourage members are treated important, even lil Sammy who just carries the bags from the car. B/c you know we gotta know what we gotta know. And that means not taking NO for answer, ya dig!
Don't blame the athletes folks, blame the system that has decided to market them for the sake of a dollar. The athletes already had an ego before the media pumped them up to legendary proportions. It's so outta control that the athletes themselves start believing the hype. And when the hype doesn't match the output, guess who's there to throw ashes on you. Yep, Mickey Mouse and his wonderful world of friends. CHUUUCH.....