How Not To Media
Okay, for the sake of this piece, I will assume that we have all seen the Cam Newton post game interview following Carolina’s loss in Super Bowl 50. Instead of arriving to the podium in his usual polished form and donning those awful capri pants, he was clad in a hoodie pulled aggressively high over his head and slouched in a chair. He mean-mugged every reporter around him as he fired off mostly one-word answers and his body language pretty much said “go to hell” the entire time. He then abruptly stormed off like a child.
Apparently the New York Yankees showed the video of this to their players a few days ago as an example of how not to address the media. I find the entire idea of coaching a player to behave in a certain way when there is a camera and microphone in their face intriguing. I want genuine; not coached.
I understand that baseball is, even if only in my mind, much more gentlemanly as a sport and much more beholden to the idea of reverence for the game than the other major sports in America. I also understand why a team would want to be portrayed in a certain light and represented well when one of its players is giving sound bites to the often brutal local beat writers. What I don’t understand is why the teams and the media think that I, average sports fan, want counterfeit humility and forced graciousness from guys that are far more competitive and driven than any of us will ever fully realize.
If a player loses his right to be surly and pop-off after a tough loss then all we get are a laundry list of mindless sports cliches that typically cause me to reach for my remote. I want athletes to speak their mind. I want athletes to have an opinion. I want athletes to talk shit and stir the pot. Call out a team mate that was dogging it. Bash the General Manager. Storm out of an interview like a child.
Threaten Vontaze Burfict’s life on Twitter.
I have no problem with what Cam Newton did after the Super Bowl. Sure, it made him look like a bit of an ass but it didn’t cause me to think less of the Carolina Panthers as an organization. Cam represented Cam. Period.
Hey yo Yankees, crown jewel of the city with by far the most colorful use of the English language ever, ease up a bit and let your boys do what boys do best – pout and bitch and piss and moan… directly into the camera.