Wannabe Sports Writer?
November 17, 2006 by Benjie Cruz
Bill Simmons posted some interesting comments on how mainstream sports media guys took him and his sports writing career un-seriously and unceremoniously in the late 90′s. They belittled him…
Nobody is reading him!
He doesn’t matter!
He is just a Blogger!
He writes for an internet column, who cares!
Fast forward to 2006, look who’s being widely read now? Yes, it’s the witty Bill Simmons of ESPN Page 2.
Him, not getting sport passes, not covering local teams, not having to lick sports personalities just to get the inside scoop forced him to think outside the box. And so, being an outsider, he writes from the fan’s perspective. This is the reason why he is one of ESPN’s most well-regarded Page2 columnists.
In fact, if you’d look over at live ESPN chats, he gets to receive the most numbers of questions compared to other ESPN guys, “Page1″ writers included. One time, he received more than 30,000 entries/questions in a chat marathon. Of course, he wasnâ€™t able to get back to all questions, mine included.
In time, I came to realize that you didn’t need a press pass to write an entertaining column about sports. So thank you, everyone who blackballed me. – Bill Simmons
Simmons argues, you can follow and cover sports beat just by watching post game press conferences, watching highlights and sound bites on ESPN. Yes, in the U.S., he can. But here in the Philippines where post game conferences aren’t aired live and the fact that PBA.ph is pretty much static, a PBA news blogger would still need to sound off to the main stream media guys like say, a Quinito Henson, an Al Mendoza, a Bill Velasco and other guys.
Also, a impromptu-writer needs to watch a lot live TV coverage too to get some more views. It’s just a blessing that ABC 5 covers the PBA just a little differently from previous PBA carriers. There’s something fresh about it that gives us more to blog about. Well the PBA-ABC successful partnership is a different matter altogether.
Simmons added, other sports blogs and message boards give him even fresher inputs. Add this all up, internet coverage (PBA.ph, sports section of Philstar.com, INQ7.net, Malaya.com.ph, ManilaStandard.com, etc), plus live TV, Message Boards and BlogsÂ and a lot basketball gut feel, is this enough to cover a league, let’s say the PBA?
Don’t get me wrong, I am no basketball writer nor I desire to be one full-time. I do other stuff, ya know. Me, being part-time contributor-developer of Hoops.Blink.Ph is roughly 10 to 15 % of my time. PLUS, I am not a competent writer. Years and years and true writing gift is needed to be one. I am just laying out the fact the one Bill Simmons did it? Why can’t someone else be like a Philippines’ Bill Simmons?
Bill Simmonsâ€™ ESPN Page2 site is here.