Timing is everything, and I’m never ignorant to the fact that I crafted a career in sportswriting at a moment of significant change in the media landscape. My tone, my approach to writing and my ability to turn copy around fast were tailored for that shift from traditional media to new media.
I had the benefit of working for sites that allowed their writers a chance to create, succeed and fail without the constant pressure to write for clicks. And I had the benefit of working under several talented editors who helped my hone my craft and told me when I was being a petulant jerk.
Alas, the work I did at The Connection isn’t available online any longer; I hope to scan some of those pieces down the line. But for now, I few of the stories I’m proud to have written over the last decade:
Unmasked & Anonymous: Answering Ethical Questions About a Blogger Named Eklund (Aug. 1, 2007; AOL FanHouse)
One of the first viral stories I reported, at a time when “Eklund” was a curious sensation. This led to some interesting times behind the scenes … but that’s another book.
The Art Of The Snot Rocket (March 13, 2008; Deadspin)
A fairly good representation of my work for Deadspin. To this day, the most challenging writing gig I’ve ever had in the sense that the commenters were funnier than I was.
The story behind Mudbugs vs. IceRays brawl (Jan. 8. 2009; Puck Daddy)
Still my favorite hockey fight call of all-time, and one of those stories I’m so happy to have helped bring into hockey legend. “THAT’LL TEACH YA TO RUN KEN CARROLL.”
Inside story of how shark with octopus hit the ice in San Jose (May 4, 2010, Puck Daddy)
My story on the intricate mechanics involved in tossing a shark from the stands to the ice during a Red Wings/Sharks game. A shark with an octopus in its mouth.
How Lightning fan outwitted petty HOA over playoff sign (May 6, 2011; Puck Daddy)
One of my favorite stories ever. I love picking up the phone on what might seem like the smallest story and getting gold out of it.
The Brendan Shanahan/Scott Stevens switch, 20 years later (July 25, 2011, Puck Daddy)
A look back at an event that changed the course of the NHL for about 10 years.
Fourth-Place Medal rides the whitewater canoe slalom in London (July 29, 2012; Fourth-Place Medal)
A little first-person action at the London Games.
Blaming coach Dan Bylsma for USA Hockey’s Olympic embarrassment (Feb. 22, 2014; Fourth Place Medal)
A little harsh after we lost out on a medal? Sure. But me and Bylsma have talked since then without him hitting me in the face with his fist.
Nicklas Backstrom misses gold medal game over use of banned substance (Feb. 23, 2014; Fourth Place Medal)
One of the biggest scoops of my career: Breaking the news that Nicklas Backstrom missed the gold medal game in Sochi for a doping violation.
Glen Sather’s meticulous, messy and marvelous making of NY Rangers (June 1, 2014, Puck Daddy)
A meticulous look back at how the Rangers’ Stanley Cup finalist was built.
What NHL players are told about rape, domestic violence (Aug. 28, 2015; Puck Daddy)
Revelatory look at the way the NHL educates its players about rape and domestic violence during the preseason.
Connor McDavid, the Edmonton Oilers’ complex Messiah (Oct. 16, 2015; Puck Daddy)
I attended McDavid’s first game in Edmonton, and got a great sense of what that moment meant for the Oilers fans who wore his name on their backs.
My first time reporting on the Hockey Hall of Fame induction, and a great chance to look back at these two titans.