Whenever the 2022 Major League Baseball season begins, one of the more familiar, reliable columnists covering the sport won’t be a part of it for the first time in the past 25-plus years.
Ken Davidoff retired from the New York Post last week (his last day was Feb. 28) after covering the New York Yankees as a beat writer for the Bergen Record and Newsday, before moving up to national baseball writer at the latter publication. He eventually moved to the Post, where he was the national MLB columnist for 10 years.
He shared the news of his retirement from the Post on Facebook, accompanied by a photo of him as a student at the Michigan Daily, the University of Michigan’s student newspaper.
“For the first time since 93, I have no job, only this time I’m a lot less anxious about it,” wrote Davidoff. “After nearly 29 years as a sportswriter, the last 25-plus covering baseball, I have decided to shut down this chapter of my life and try something different. What exactly that will be, I’m not sure, although I’m already exploring a few ideas.”
“I couldn’t have realized my childhood dream without the support of family, friends, colleagues and baseball people,” Davidoff added. “Some of you cheered me on while work kept me away and extremely busy; some of you made the job fun while hanging out in ballparks, hotel lobbies and even Congressional hearings; and some of you helped me with information and insight. Thanks to all of you. See you soon.”
Unfortunately, after more than 25 years covering baseball, Davidoff’s last reporting was on the lockout not ending since team owners and players could not reach an agreement. As a result, the 2022 MLB season will be delayed for at least a week (comprising each team’s first two series on the schedule) and likely much longer.
In his farewell column for the Post (though not his final report, due to negotiations between MLB team owners and the players union extending to March 1), Davidoff thanked 10 people who made covering baseball memorable, including Derek Jeter, George Steinbrenner, Brian Cashman, Alex Rodriguez, Yoenis Cespedes, David Ortiz, and Carlos Beltran. (The column is behind the NY Post paywall.)
“Good god, did he give us stuff to write about every which way,” Davidoff wrote of A-Rod. “Just off the top of my head: the slap play and other postseason struggles (and triumphs)… two American League Most Valuable Player awards… a flurry of personal relationships … not one but two illegal performance-enhancing drug scandals, the latter resulting in him suing MLB and the Players Association! … Simply the best. If not for him, I wouldn’t have made it this long, though I would’ve slept more.”
Ian Casselberry is a sports media columnist for BSM. He has previously written and edited for Awful Announcing, The Comeback, Sports Illustrated, Yahoo Sports, MLive, Bleacher Report, and SB Nation. You can find him on Twitter @iancass or reach him by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Bomani Jones: Chris Canty Made Me Rethink How I Look At This Job
“You’ve heard me say this before. I have a particular respect for former athletes that get in and treat this job with care like in the same way they would the other job.”
The Right Time with Bomani Jones has been one of ESPN’s most successful podcasts recently. Part of the appeal is that the conversations can go anywhere. Jones and his guests talk plenty about sports, but they will venture into pop culture, current events, and more. When it is “Foxworth Friday”, there is a good chance that the show will give some insight on other ESPN personalities.
On the most recent edition of The Right Time, Bomani Jones and Domonique Foxworth discussed how hard it can be to come up with a unique view on a topic every single time you are asked to talk about it. When Foxworth said that ESPN Radio’s Chris Canty makes it a little easier for him to be entertaining in those moments, Jones added to the praise.
He discussed a conversation he and Canty had at a Halloween party hosted by FOX’s Nick Wright.
“You’ve heard me say this before. I have a particular respect for former athletes that get in and treat this job with care like in the same way they would the other job,” Jones said. “Chris was like ‘Hey man’. You know, he’s got a Super Bowl ring, but he’s like ‘I didn’t get a gold jacket. I wasn’t great at that. But this? I have a chance to be great at something else.’”
Bomani Jones was impressed by that attitude. He admitted that it was eye-opening.
“That really made me look back at how I do my job and was like ‘Yo, I need to be looking at this in a very similar way.’”
Foxworth agreed. He said that it isn’t hard to believe that Chris Canty wants to be great on TV and radio. It is easy to see when he is making an effort to get better.
“He works at it and he doesn’t rely on just one move,” Foxworth said. “Using the basketball analogy, he’s adding new stuff to his game.”
Chris Canty clearly has fans in Bristol. ESPN keeps finding ways to use him across multiple platforms. In addition to his daily ESPN Radio show with Chris Carlin, he also makes regular appearances on Get Up with Mike Greenberg.
Dave Portnoy Drops Appeal Of Lawsuit Against Business Insider
“In dropping the suit, both Portnoy and Insider have agreed to pay their own legal fees according to Awful Announcing.”
Dave Portnoy is done with his legal fight against Insider. He filed an appeal after a judge dismissed his initial defamation suit in November. That appeal has been dropped.
Nich Carlson, the Global Editor-in-Chief of Insider, took to Twitter Friday to announce that the legal standoff had come to an end. He also notes that Insider is not surprised by the decision. The company stands by the reporting in the initial story, in which multiple women alleged that sexual encounters with Portnoy turned “violent and humiliating”. It was one of two stories the site published featuring these kinds of accusations against Portnoy.
Both sides will move on. In dropping the suit, both Portnoy and Insider have agreed to pay their own legal fees according to Awful Announcing.
In November, a Massachusetts judge ruled that Portnoy would have to prove that Insider acted with “actual malice” in publishing the stories. That was going to be a high bar considering that Dave Portnoy is a public figure.
Neither he nor his legal team have publicly commented about the status of the lawsuit.
Nick Wright: Majority of Media Got Tom Brady Retirement Story Wrong
“I don’t think people understand that these are not easy decisions.”
The news of the retirement of Tom Brady wasn’t the most shocking development, but FS1 host Nick Wright believes the way some of media coverage around Brady evolved wasn’t handled correctly.
During his What’s Wright? with Nick Wright podcast, Wright argued that those who have been given tremendous talents are put in different situations than those who weren’t, stopping just short of saying Brady had a duty to continue to perform his craft. He later added that those joking about Brady’s marriage failing for an extra season in the league weren’t viewing the entire picture, and that the divorce wasn’t something worth joking about.
“I see a lot of stuff people are saying about Brady, and I think it’s bullshit,” Wright said. “‘Oh, you sacrificed your marriage to 8-9’. And I don’t think people understand that these are not easy decisions. These are not easy things, and people know we know we are at times putting yourself first, in a selfish way that you’re not supposed to as a parent.”
The First Things First host then said the situation is similar to one he experienced as a child, but grew to realize there were bigger things than simply being a parent.
“It’s what I learned from my own dad. My own dad — who I have massive admiration for — absolutely put me and my sister — at times — on the backburner to negotatioting the best bargain possible for the Kansas City Firefighters. His legacy — he’s a great dad, who I adore — (but) his life’s legacy is not the things he did for me and my sister, his real legacy is the things he did for those firefighters and their families. You have those push and pull things and you make decisions and you deal with the fallout of it. It’s really sad that he and Gisele didn’t make it.”