Weekend Open Thread


by mike in boston


I’m on vacation this week. If I were doing my regular column I would have to write about Cathal Kelly and Steve Simmons embarrassing themselves as journalists.






I get it – professional work is really hard work. But the answer is not being a lazy troll on Twitter.  As much as your bosses might seem happy about all the buzz you’re generating, you’re losing credibility as journalists. Once you’re just another loudmouth on Twitter, what are you? Right now, you’re both punchlines.


People are noticing, by the way. Some of them even have journalistic credibility.



for an excellent breakdown of everything that makes Simmons among the worst people in Toronto media, read this.


see you all next week,

mike (in boston)

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June 28, 2014 7:11 am

I like when they call each other out.

Steve in Waterloo
Steve in Waterloo
June 28, 2014 9:03 am

I like the non politically correctness of twitter (due to limited characters), I like frankness of twitter, but I don’t like that context can’t always be applied when making simple one sentence statements.

Kelly can take up the cause, but should not paint with such a wide brush.

The fact that I don’t like much of “Rosie’s” opportunistic journalism is no different than my dislike of Cox’s sarcasm, or Strachan’s bias.

It is criticism, which I will gladly share to man or women.

June 28, 2014 2:44 pm

I looked for this Tweet and I guess it was deleted:

@bruce_arthur @mlse Don’t see any media guys chiding the other media guys doing what @mlse supposedly is…

Is that an incomplete Tweet? Read it several times, have no clue what it means or refers to.

I blocked Bruce Arthur because he’s a timeline swamper.

June 28, 2014 4:38 pm

I don’t know what Kelly is on about there, but aside from Rosie (who is not my favorite columnist either), those other two right-wing, plagiaristic (in Wente’s case) attack-dogs deserve any bit of criticism they get. It has nothing to do with them being women – it’s about their poisonous, elitist, smug, neo-con opinions. It’s pretty despicable on Kelly’s part to play the gender card in this circumstance. According to him, if you don’t agree with Blatchford, Wente, or Rosie, you must be a misogynist. Please, that is so weak.

June 28, 2014 5:54 pm

Toronto media types like to beat their collective chest about how diverse and competitive the market is … but when it gets right down to it, they cover each other’s butts as much as they do in the most miniscule and insignificant of media markets. It’s the biggest Old Boys Club going, particularly on the hockey beat.

Claire A Fye
Claire A Fye
June 28, 2014 6:47 pm

Maybe I’m wrong but I read the Kelly tweet a little differently. I thought he was referring to those who don’t like the fact that women like Rosie, Christie and Wente hold their columnist positions are being misogynists. He didn’t say you had to like what they wrote at all. Curt wrote about their content and that’s fair. But I don’t think his remarks would have been different if they were men. It’s a fine line maybe, but I think that’s what Kelly was saying. I would argue that, especially when it comes to Rosie, he’s right. A lot of criticism aimed at her has an underlying gender bias. The other two, not so much.

June 28, 2014 7:15 pm

Good points. I just don’t understand why, if Kelly is trying make a point about female discrimination in journalism, he would select, as examples, columnists who are so open to criticism based on what they write and, in Wente’s case, lack of journalistic integrity (she’s a known plagiarist). It really weakens his argument in my opinion.

June 28, 2014 7:32 pm

Cathal Kelly is essentially doing what he accuses others of doing: Painting with a wide brush. Criticisms of writers like Margaret Wente or Christie Blatchford or Rosie DiManno are wide and ranging … not singular. Yet, Kelly wants to wrap it all up with a nice little bow.

As a sports media consumer, my personal angst with Rosie DiManno is precisely the same issue I have with John Doyle. Both only show up on the sports beat when the story is sexy, the trip is desirable and/or they can pal around with their cronies. Otherwise, they are nowhere to be found. And if you think I’m the only one who has this issue with them, privately ask their colleagues … and you’ll get an earful. Man or woman, both are widely considered phonies.

Sam in Scarb
Sam in Scarb
June 29, 2014 12:18 pm

Said it before and will say it again Simmons used to be a “Must read” now all on his own without nobody to blame but himself he is a “Must I read ?”

Pat Tabler is just horrible as a Blue Jays annalist on tv.
To think,Robbers let Hayhurst,Morris and Ashby walk because they were to cheap.I guess you know what you are getting when you shop at the dollar store.

Another Steve
Another Steve
June 29, 2014 1:27 pm

Didn’t Ashby and Morris leave because they wanted to go back to their home cities?

Not sure that it was a matter of money in their respective cases…

June 29, 2014 1:39 pm

Yeah Ashby left because he got offered PxP on TV where he actually lives in the offseason. Hard to turn that down. Don’t see that as being cheap. Morris also went back to Minnesota where he lives as well.

June 29, 2014 2:23 pm

Whatever the reason, it was tough to see Ashby go. He was honest.

Back to one of Sam’s point: Tabler is awful … and, after so many years now, is not getting any better.

June 29, 2014 4:14 pm

You simply cannot call Pat Tabler an analyst. He’s a cheerleader. “Let’s get a hit here, right now…”

Buck is awful in his own right too, but I think he’s got the excuse of taking a lot of foul tips to the head. Still, he has become the Blue Jays’ Hawk Harrelson.

Nan Young Lee
Nan Young Lee
June 29, 2014 4:30 pm

Why the Ghana players were right to demand that plane full of cash. Or why some on 590 and 1050 and other outlets should stop blaming the African players for not improving or winning more over the years.

From the following link:


It’s 45 pages so I’ll quote some highlights:

“An important thing to realize is that in Africa most relations are characterized as
those between a patron and a client. This so-called system of patronage is visible in
all levels of football. A wealthy and powerful man (sometimes a woman) takes a
position within the FA or a club and then assumes total control. He (or she) uses the
FA or club to rally supporters, mostly for prestigious or political purposes. One
consequence is that many employees in football organizations are hired as a
‘favour’, not because they have the relevant skills and experience for the job.”

“……the bonuses that should go to national team players are usually never
paid. Corruption is also bad because the money is not spend on developing the
game in Africa.
A lot of money is being pumped into African football by companies whose core
businesses are mining, agriculture, oil and gas, beverages and otherwise, but also
by international sports companies such as Adidas and Puma and by television
networks on the continent. There is also money coming in from other types of
sponsorships and FIFA development projects. Much of the funds are earmarked for
grassroots development but one only has to see the poor football facilities in Africa
to notice that the money may be spent elsewhere.”

“The stadium in Bamenda (Cameroon) is nothing but a wall around a gravel pitch.
Goats walk freely inside the premises. At least six football teams practice here on a
daily basis. Making a tackle is a ticket straight to the hospital. A club owner recently
spent a lot of money for the refurbishment of the pitch and the stadium. The one
who received the money ran away and was later arrested. The stadium actually
belongs to the football authorities in the capital Yaoundé. But supporters in
Bamenda claim that they refuse to send money.”

When I googled the (Sub-Saharan)African countries in this World Cup and “gdp per capita” the following stats emerge(from World Bank, 2012):

Ghana gdp per capita – $1,604.91 and a life expectancy of 60.95 years.
Camareoon – $1,166.91 and 54.59 years.
Cote D’Ivoire – $1,243.99 and 50.40 years.
Nigeria – $1,555.36 and 52.11 years.

For comparison:

Dominican Republic – $5,745.78 and 73.23 years
Colombia – $7,747.84 and 73.78 years
Costa Rica – $9,386.30 and 79.70
Brazil – $11,339.52 and 73.62 years
Portugal – $20,188.03 and 80.37 years
Netherlands -$45,989.68 and 81.10 years
Canada – $51,206.16 and 81.24 years

Probably if we had a gdp per capita around $1500 and life expectancy of 52 years we wouldn’t be winning gold in the Olympics or World Juniors, no matter how many summits were comvened. Or where would our basketball program be if we didn’t have the US prep schools and NCAA to send our promising youth to.

Another Steve
Another Steve
June 29, 2014 5:41 pm

I think the 590 and 1050 host you mention is none other than Les Whinen.

Well, I’d say that Les Whinen ought to do more thinking and less whining!

(In other words, the argument sounds a bit strawman-ish to me…)

June 30, 2014 8:59 am

@ GreyCountyMike.

Have to defend John Doyle, here. He is a first-rate writer who is quite knowledgeable on international soccer and who, I believe, has written a couple of well received books on the subject. Yes, I can understand how the optics make it appear that he is only showing up at the major events, but I believe he is far more qualified to offer his thoughts on The World Cup than Rosie is on anything sports related.

June 30, 2014 11:03 am

If I could subscribe to these comments without posting I would.

June 30, 2014 11:12 am

@ Drumanchor

Fair enough … and I will gladly take your word that Doyle is worthy.

On the whole, though, the fact the G&M has to pull anyone from another section to cover the World Cup speaks volumes to the current lack of resources in the sports department.

Clair A Fye
Clair A Fye
June 30, 2014 1:22 pm

@Drumanchor @GreyCountyMike If book writing is the criteria, Rosie’s written books on the Blue Jays and a biography of Pat Burns. She started her career as a sportswriter. It’s okay not t to like what she writes, or what she writes about, but do a little homework. She’s done this before.

June 30, 2014 4:06 pm

@ Clair A Fye

That’s exactly the point – she has done this many times before.

She shows up when she deems fit. Otherwise, crickets.

But don’t take my word for it.

Ask some of the folks – women and men – who cover the beats day in and day out. Admittedly not all, but some find her annoying and opportunistic … and, yes, a bit phony.

Erie Fishtug
Erie Fishtug
June 30, 2014 6:16 pm

Didn’t Hayhurst Ashby and Morris walk because of (among other things) Jerry Haworth? For the Jays to let those guys go because of money seems farfetched even tho’ hometown choices are involved – Rogers obviously get Wilner for free because nobody would pay that jerk – In my opinion Wilner’s pay is he gets to shower with the team-

June 30, 2014 7:10 pm

This isn’t a media comment per se but I need to vent. After the rapturous experience of seeing Dave Matthews 3 times last week I did the good husband thing and went to Michael Buble at the ACC last night. That fucking Bon Jovi banner is 100000000000000000000000000000x more embarassing than 47 years without a Stanley Cup.

June 30, 2014 7:52 pm

TSN currently showing ESPN feed of Rays/Yankees. 4 Sportsnet channels showing YES network feed of same game.

Mike S
Mike S
June 30, 2014 9:24 pm

Hey Andrew………..I was going to say the exact same thing……….don’t know if I’ve ever seen TSN and Sportsnet show the same game before

June 30, 2014 11:43 pm

@Andrew LOL. That Tim Leiweke…He knows people, don’t he?

Mike S
Mike S
July 2, 2014 10:47 am

Blair said on 590 today that Baseball Central will once again move to the noon hour for the summer starting tomorrow

Another Steve
Another Steve
July 2, 2014 3:31 pm

I’m wondering whether the drive-home shows will find a way to talk about tennis today, now that we have two players in the semi-finals of Wimbledon, or whether they’ll be filled with more July hockey talk.

Mike S
Mike S
July 2, 2014 4:06 pm

Naylor will be talking about tennis with Jon Wertheim at 4:30 on 1050

Another Steve
Another Steve
July 2, 2014 4:13 pm

Thanks! Wertheim is one of the best out there.

July 3, 2014 9:00 am

Bob apparently had Tebbutt on in the 4 :00 hour.

(Another) Andrew
(Another) Andrew
July 3, 2014 5:11 pm

Wertheim is one of the best out there.

Wertheim’s June 23 SI.com column predicted the following in the men’s singles:

Semifinals: Grigor Dimitrov vs. Novak Djokovic; Roger Federer vs. Milos Raonic

Sam in Scarb
Sam in Scarb
July 4, 2014 2:51 am

@ Mike (in boston) “the city makes a difference.”

The city could be Pis Whole Pass,North Dakota with no running water or indoor plumbing and if someone gave me 48 million reasons I would freekin’ love to live there,and be Mayor if needed.

Would love your thoughts, please comment.x