Steve Simmons Nails It On Burke Story


My first post live from an airplane!

Thanks to the Wright brothers, Alaska Airlines and Gogo inflight wifi I am writing this from 30,000 ft live on the internet.

Steve Simmons nailed the Burke story tonight, it’s a must read.

Here are the highlights:

“This much we know, even though it isn’t our business. Burke is apparently having marital problems. That doesn’t in any way make him unique. Half my neighbourhood is having marital issues of one kind or another. It also isn’t our business what’s happening in his home. It only becomes our business if it affects how he performs on the job.”

The delicate balance between a personal life of a public person. Truth is, in this case it is none of our business, Simmons is right.

“So what has happened here? The worst of the modern world of journalism and the blogosphere is at play here. A story gets whispered about and talked about so often that it becomes truth simply by being spread regularly — and in this case by people who should know better. From word of mouth it makes its way to Twitter or a blog or somewhere where the principles of journalism are not exhibited. The regular rules of attribution and sourcing don’t exist in non-traditional media outlets such as blogs.”

I told you we would here this…

“The number of those who have heard the stories and believe Burke will be pushed out is many. And when a relatively conservative TSN became the first mainstream media outlet to address the issue Tuesday night, it seemed the appropriate time to bring context to some of the misinformation that is out there.”

Bob Mckenzie addressed the issue tonight…..

“My initial inclination was to let this pass, but the more I’ve been asked about it by prominent hockey people, the more there seemed a need to bring some calm to rumours that have no validity.”


Ok- have to run we are landing….


Simmons column is here

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June 6, 2012 4:13 am

I can tell your somewhat isolated on that flying machine and all because “Steve Simmons nails it” is NOT the prevailing attitude! He’s taking major heat and SHOULD BE!

mike (in boston)
mike (in boston)
June 6, 2012 5:46 am

for a perspective that does not think Simmons “nailed it”, see PPP:

“Despite Steve Simmons’ admission that these rumours have swirled around the hockey world for two months, the dipshit still manages to blame it on bloggers. Let’s see when he can muster the courage to do the same to his Sun colleague Bruce “Malkin To The Kings” Garrioch or others of his ilk.

Regardless of the veracity of the story, the post is just about the perfect example that MSM can hold up when complaining about irresponsible bloggers. There is a suggestion of personal impropriety and it’s based on anonymous ‘sources’. Come to think of it, it reads like a lot of the character assassination pieces that the MSM comes out with when players are on their way out of almost any town.

itchy butt
itchy butt
June 6, 2012 6:51 am

I don’t see what Simmon’s “nailed” exactly. Where was all this concern for personal lives when Tiger’s wife was beating on his Escalade with a 5 iron?

If anything the bloggers are distanced from the boy’s club that surrounds most sports writers. Would you prefer we go back to the days of beat writers getting some nice little kick backs to look the other way when they see improprieties?

If anything does come of this story I am dying to see what is written here. I won’t be sad to see the last of the Burke love affair.

June 6, 2012 9:09 am

I’ve noted previously that Burke looks like he’s at death’s door. He’s 56 but looks more like 76.

He’s aged dramatically since coming to T.O. I assumed it was due to the whole episode of his son coming ‘out’ and his subsequent death and of course just being the Leafs GM but obviously there are other things at play. Either way, he’s done a lousy job with the Leafs and should be fired.

Another Steve
Another Steve
June 6, 2012 9:31 am

I hate reading stories about the personal lives of people (at least the ones that try to mask themselves as anything other than salacious and puerile, that is), so this brief missive here is the only idea I have of the Burke story. But it reminds me a lot of the sleazy gossip about Terry Francona’s marriage last fall.

The world is obviously changing with all of the new forms of media, but one thing that bugs me is that many of the practitioners of the new media seem all-too ready to defend even the most vile aspects that come along with it.

No parallels are perfect, and this is admittedly extreme, but I am thinking of the site “Best Gore” and the host’s recent defence of showing the Magnotta snuff film by calling it “educational.” [Of course, by that logic everything is educational.]

Blogging has become very widespread and, when things become so popular, you get a lot of repulsive shit. I just get rather uncomfortable when people talk about the new technologies as if they are virtues in themselves. The medium itself isn’t a virtue. Many bloggers do cross a line into discussions of personal lives, as do many people on comment boards (which are usually worse). And the notion of self-policing the internet reminds me of people who believe that hockey players should police themselves. No – that’s why we have referees (in hockey), and that’s why we have laws and police (in life).

The MSM can be absolutely wretched, but the new media is hardly this bastion of goodness and virtue.

Bob Canuck
Bob Canuck
June 6, 2012 2:16 pm

I incorrectly posted the comments below to the “Power of Internet Publication” piece. My comments are better placed here. Sorry for the duplication.


A few thoughts about this episode.

1. Bob McKenzie acted appropriately by limiting his comments to whether or not Brian Burke was going to be fired shortly. He did not mention other aspects of the rumour.

2. Steve Simmons’ needlessly and illogically noted that Brian Burke is allegedly having marital issues. If marital problems are “none of our business”, why mention it all?

3. The blogger in question has issued an apology to Brian Burke. If I were Brian Burke, I would consider the apology to be incomplete: the rumour spread by the blogger included aspects beyond the employment status of Brian Burke.

June 6, 2012 4:47 pm

“He’s aged dramatically since coming to T.O. I assumed it was due to the whole episode of his son coming ‘out’ and his subsequent death ”

Um. I think his subsequent death is enough. You don’t need to include the coming out.

I really hope you’re not suggesting Brendan Burke’s coming out would be anywhere in the same stratosphere of difficulty (if indeed there was any at all) as his death was for Burke.

mike (in boston)
mike (in boston)
June 7, 2012 7:21 am

glanced at the tweet box in the right hand side and see that TSM is endorsing (I assume that’s what a retweet means) both Cox and Simmons on the Burke story. Hard to see how both opinions can be correct here … perhaps a clarification is needed for those of us who believe in the law of non-contradiction.

Shoalts explains the Globe’s decision not to report on the rumours (Blame TSN!!):

mike (in boston)
mike (in boston)
June 7, 2012 11:53 am

found a couple of great blog posts bouncing around the tubes today. both are opinionated, but more importantly well-written and well-researched. highly recommended reading:

June 7, 2012 3:45 pm


So naive and politically correct of you, at the same time – quite an accomplishment.

You better believe his son telling him he liked dudes has had an effect on Burke. You may not be aware of this, but not everyone endorses this lifestyle.

Nan Young Lee
Nan Young Lee
June 7, 2012 4:09 pm


Burke seemed to be handling his son’s coming out with great decency. He attended Pride Parades, gave interviews supporting his son and accepted awards from gay organizations.–leafs-gm-brian-burke-greatly-honoured-by-award-from-gay-community

Daniel was not politically correct, just correct.

June 8, 2012 9:27 am

No Nan, he was wrong as are you. And yes “lifestyle”- have you not heard of the term?

Darryl M
Darryl M
June 15, 2012 11:18 am

ugh. Roger…do your nuckles bleed from all the dragging about on the ground. I’m sure you think sexuality is a choice for which I can only say If it’s a true choice I invite you to go against your usual choice and see how the other half lives. I will make a further assumtion and say that the mere thought of that would sicken you. So, before you go blathering that its a lifestyle choice I say walk a mile in their shoes.

Burke has lived through hell with the death of his son. No one who hasnt had that happen knows what he’s going through. The fact that Brian Burke is a blustery mans man does not mitigate the fact that he has nothing against homosexuality.

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