I do not want to give the impression NYIFC is some kind of place where we look only for the negative in our media coverage wherever it comes from on a given day.
I know the regular readers understand this and from the e-mail responses most others do also.
What is done here (beyond the countless other things) is to put the professional media coverage under the spotlight (sometimes Mr Botta) and ask fair but tough questions as to whether our team is getting a fair shake from not only the folks assigned to cover them but other media outlets.
My preference is always to praise the work but these days what comes out of the media is border line over the top and negative to the extreme which I would even accept if that standard was the same with all the teams being covered.
Clearly it's not. I wish the standards were the same for every team as it should be.
I don't like to use the Rangers as an example but they are the other hockey team covered in Newsday, if the Devils were covered there we would be talking about New Jersey and differences in coverage.
Earlier this season I read the same Newspaper staff that made a huge issue over DiPietro sitting on the bench against Buffalo and even doubted his ability to play turn a blind eye to Stephen Valiquette left in net to allow ten goals while Henrik Lundqvist took the game day skate and sat on the bench.
If this were Rick DiPietro there is no way that would not pass without a big issue being made about it.
Where was the emergency goalie, a circus was made out of Mike Dunham getting ready a few weeks ago?
Earlier last week Joey MacDonald was on the bench when earlier if this were DiPietro
it would have been asked why is he not starting several times a day?
It begs the question why is the reporting and the questions not the same for all the teams/players being covered?
Saturday-Sunday I looked at some the same Newsday staff that ran Sean Avery out of town just months ago, air his dirty laundry do a one hundred eighty degree turn and now talk about how much team Cablevision needs him?
Neil Best is out there doing articles selling the stage at Msg for the Knicks and he is supposed to be the media person?
Come on down Barbara Barker the price is wrong but that does not stop her from telling us Saturday the Knicks are more fun to watch than they have been in years.
Funny but the Islanders and all the one goal losses with the kids seemed to be fun also, it's just not packaged that way by Newsday.
Mark Herrmann who questions every Islander celebration for a homegrown dynasty and the motivation goes over the top with the praise for a player on his Rangers getting his jersey retired and tells Islander fans it's not our business?
For those scoring at home the NHL insider blog Mark Herrmann was given nine of the last ten entries are Ranger centric with Islander content two small paragraphs based on Thrashers loss to the Devils, Atlants should finish 30th in an entry called goodbye Tavares here.
This was after about one entry in the first month.
Mike Casey (who does most of the other entries) tells of how Graves signed his jersey when he was a kid. Anthony Rieber brags that Newsday did not go overboard with Graves coverage and took a shot at Al Arbour playing Nystrom his 900th game or Arbour night itself and then asks how is Newsday doing?
We have a beatwriter in Greg Logan who is not even honest enough with his readers to list that he covered the Rangers for Newsday in his profile. He can write and does some quality features at times but most but more often than not shows no passion and would rather be somewhere else doing only what's required.
To be fair Mr Logan went back and made sure he did more on Doug Weight and Mark Streit earlier after he questioned himself but other players should be hyped up a lot more, we should see a lot more chats from him and blog entries.
Was his latest entry Sunday on making sure quotes that don't make the print edition will be repeated in a blog filler to substitute for fresh updates? Seems that second print article is now a blog entry as filler.
Greg Logan above all should understand his paper is the only one that covers all the New York Islander games, he should be trying to do even more but he cannot even keep up with Steve Zipay which is old news here but has to be written again when the coverage disparity is this dramatic.
Worst of all you see the difference in how the Newsday staff treats the Garden's teams vs the others. The Mets, Jets, Giants and Yankees take some big beatings in this paper with a lot of shockjock coverage. Cablevision owned Newsday goes very easy on the Knicks who have been the benchmark of a laughingstock for close to a decade and the Rangers who have not been much better since 1997.
Those teams will not be getting A-Rod coverage.
The Knicks lost to three teams with the fans of the opposing star player getting more cheers than the Garden's team. The Rangers have scored a whopping seven more goals than the Islanders (Isles have higher gpg avg) this season who have games in hand and about three hundred more man games lost to injury.
You would never know this reading Newsday which John Jeasonne today writing the 336 games lost is according to team calculations.
Arthur Staple is another former Ranger beatwriter who does a lot of hockey articles now speculation on what he calls both " local " teams?
That does not seem to be the case in NYC papers.
The editor of Newsday walked off the job a few weeks ago (during a Presidential Inaugural) over supposed problems with something written about the Knicks. No doubt the pressure is on some of these people to sell the Garden's teams in the sports department which they had been doing long before the paper changed hands last summer.
But does that mean the New York Islanders have to take a hit as part of this package? I have written several times many criticisms are fair about our team, but others are not.
The National and Canadian media read this and are influenced by it.
Mark Herrmann and staff tracked down Bob Nystrom and Scott Rechler, how come the same staff did not get comment from Cablevision who were on the Bernard Madoff list?
This is hardly confined to Newsday, the Post and Daily News have been brutal with bland coverage that is limited which reads more like captain obvious material with rarely any insight. Dan Martin gave us something from Rick DiPietro earlier that was his only true solid work this season.
For a man with Peter Botte's long-time background covering the Islanders he has done little with his limited space at the Daily News and been a disappointment when he has covered games. He should be leading the charge to give us something different.
The prospect work in the Daily News has been by far the best hockey coverage for all three teams.
Only the Times editor knows when or if the next Islander article is, we don't have Islander-Ranger coverage for two Msg games but we have the latest from the KHL?
They cannot even get the feeder right at the Times for the Islanders, I put it on the sidebar here and three week AP articles would surface.
The singular exception as usual is if you are reading the Ct Post and Michael Fornabaio's exceptional coverage in Bridgeport. First class work as usual from someone who has been on the beat since day one of the franchise but it seems his space is being cut more and more which he makes up for in his blog.
I would love to tell my readers to enjoy the articles and that these writers are doing a good job for us. I know there are many out there that will believe anything they read in a Newspaper that influences team perception.
I cannot do that in good conscience.
One other point.
Just because someone is a hockey writer one day does not make them a hockey expert.
Mark Herrmann/Jay Greenberg move from sport to sport and despite hockey being part of the sports they covers at times does not make them Bob McKenzie or what the full time year round hockey writers do.
Former Islander beatwriter John Valenti did the weather report New Years Eve, it does not make him a weather expert.
Mr Greenberg pops in for hockey on rare occasion now despite his long-time background in St Louis and Philadelphia before starting off covering hockey here, the Daily News eliminated the position when Sherry Ross rejoined the Devils.
At this time my advice is to read the local NHL reporters and their work but look past their viewpoint or opinion and put your focus on the quotes from the players and management.
That's where the value is and what matters.
Unfortunately that seems the best we can hope for at this time.
I wish it were not so.