Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Blogs by beat writers

The past few months or so, I've noticed a pretty big shift in my blog surfing habits, and the trend's been toward stopping in with quite a few relatively "new" sites run by hockey reporters.

Some of the coverage during July 1 was outstanding.

The best of these blogs are already heavily read in their markets and the blogosphere. I've been stopping by these six regularly the past few weeks:
  1. Inside the Kings by Rich Hammond at the L.A. Daily News
  2. Capitals Insider by Tarik El-Bashir at the Washington Post
  3. Russo's Rants by Michael Russo at the Star Tribune
  4. Lightning Strikes by Damian Cristodero at St. Petersburg Times
  5. Puck-rakers by three writers at the Columbus Dispatch
  6. ThrashersBlog by Mike Knobler at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution
What follows is a list of beat writers' blogs, something that at this point is by no means a comprehensive look given there's only one blog (or less) for each team. The majority of these I came up with off of the top of my head.

I'm not interested in compiling all "media" blogs here — only those of full-time hockey reporters who have extensive access to their respective teams and post regularly. If there are blogs out there you enjoy that I've missed, let me know.

Anaheim: Ducks blog
Atlanta: ThrashersBlog
Boston: Bruins Blog
Buffalo: Sabres Edge
Calgary: Flames Insider
Carolina: Lord Stanley's Blog
Chicago: Icing
Colorado: All Things Avs
Columbus: Puck-rakers
Dallas: Stars Blog | Five for Fighting
Detroit: Red Wings Corner
Florida: On Frozen Pond | Panthers Blog | Inside the Panthers
Los Angeles: Inside the Kings
Minnesota: Russo's Rants
Montreal: Habs Inside/Out
Nashville: John Glennon
New Jersey: Fire & Ice
N.Y. Islanders: On the Islanders Beat
N.Y. Rangers: The Blueshirts Blog | Rangers Report | Blue Notes
Ottawa: Off The Posts
Phoenix: Ice Chips
Pittsburgh: Chipped Ice
San Jose: Working the Corners
St. Louis: Morning Skate
Tampa Bay: Lightning Strikes | Bolts Report
Washington: Capitals Insider | In The Room

There are some gaps there, some of them in hockey's largest markets, which is puzzling. My guess is that the type of blogs I named at the top are going to catch on and be the norm, given their popularity.

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At 10:51 a.m., July 08, 2008, Blogger James said...

James, I click on the Rangers link and WTF!!!! It sends me to some NY Icelanders homepage .... very disturbing.

At 11:04 a.m., July 08, 2008, Blogger Jay Leask said...

Another great Dallas blog is Five for Fighting out of the Fort Worth Star Tellegram. The homepage lists Tracy Myers as the only author but there are at least 3 and I have really enjoyed reading their blogs since they came out this season.

At 11:21 a.m., July 08, 2008, Blogger Matt Szymczak said...

James, Blueshirt Bulletin is pretty good for the Rangers. http://ordinaryleastsquare.typepad.com

At 11:40 a.m., July 08, 2008, Blogger danae said...

I attempted a similar feat last year. It's pretty comprehensive but not complete. I try to keep it up to date. Looks like you have a few I don't and vice versa. Compare notes here.

At 11:44 a.m., July 08, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Howard Berger has Nothing But Leafs at http://blog.rogersbroadcasting.com/nothingbutleafs/

At 11:57 a.m., July 08, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

For the Ottawa Senators, Dean Brown has a great blog about the NHL (http://deanbrownblog.blogspot.com/), but the best blog by far is the BoC (http://battleofcalifornia.blogspot.com/).

At 12:08 p.m., July 08, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jason Botchford blogs for the Canucks at the Vancouver Province:

The Vancouver Sun has their whole hockey crew blogging here:

At 12:09 p.m., July 08, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hmm, that last link for the Vancouver Sun got cut off somehow:

At 12:12 p.m., July 08, 2008, Blogger Doogie2K said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

At 12:13 p.m., July 08, 2008, Blogger Doogie2K said...

Dan Barnes of the Edmonton Journal writes All Four Cheeks, plus there's the aforementioned Vancouver stable, and I think James Gordon's Hockey Capital also counts (I don't know the Ottawa beat writers that well).

At 12:27 p.m., July 08, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Here's Rich Chere's Devils beat blog for the Newark Star-Ledger: http://www.nj.com/devils/index.ssf/devilsbeatreportersblog/

At 12:36 p.m., July 08, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review's Pens beat reporter (Rob Rossi) has his own blog: Chipped Ice

At 12:59 p.m., July 08, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Edmonton = Cult of Hockey (Chris Staples) http://communities.canada.com/edmontonjournal/blogs/hockey/default.aspx and Robin Brownlee writes for oilersnation.com

At 1:22 p.m., July 08, 2008, Blogger Josh said...

The Journal is weird. Barnes updates All Four Cheeks once a month, where David Staples does it twice a day, and he's not even their hockey reporter. Still, he's the best thing the Journal has going for the Oilers.

At 1:51 p.m., July 08, 2008, Blogger James Mirtle said...

Appreciate all the links -

A few things, though:
(a) I'm looking for writers, not broadcasters
(b) The list is likely only going to be "popular" blogs — those with a following, frequent posts and some comments
(c) Writers who aren't on the beat are going to be excluded for now, too

At 2:05 p.m., July 08, 2008, Blogger Brad said...

In a rather unfortunate twist of fate, the Flyers are going in a different direction. They sent their beat writer, Tim Panaccio, to the Eagles beat. Leaving us hockey nuts with leftover scraps.

At 2:13 p.m., July 08, 2008, Blogger Earl Sleek said...

but the best blog by far is the BoC (http://battleofcalifornia.blogspot.com/).

Ha! As soon as a newspaper hires us, throw us on the list!

At 3:18 p.m., July 08, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Some of the names for these blogs are crap.

At 5:19 p.m., July 08, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

James - I think David Staple's blog deserves to be on there. He regularly has posts which directly tie into conversations on Oilers news in the blogosphere. He isn't a beat writer, but it is obvious he is the best media blogger for the Oilers.

At 5:26 p.m., July 08, 2008, Blogger James Mirtle said...

He isn't a beat writer...

I'm afraid that just runs contrary to what this post is all about. As per the headline.

Staples runs a good site and gets lots of love from the blogosphere.

At 6:13 p.m., July 08, 2008, Blogger Jawsh said...

Rob Rossi is the absolute worst. Your blog carries weight amongst many hockey fans, please don't plug that joke.

At 7:29 p.m., July 08, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ottawa Sun also has the scintillating Off The Posts blog.

At 8:45 p.m., July 08, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Vancouver also has one of the most entertaining blogs in the blogosphere. check out the Orland Kurtenblog:

This is run our of The Province newspaper and is almost always a good read.

At 10:14 p.m., July 08, 2008, Blogger Jfry said...

this is a perfect example of how lazy the edmonton MSM is, and is perhaps a better indicator of why the oilers are so well represented by blogs and local radio shows.

honestly, i wouldn't want to be a MSM sports writer and have to compete with guys like lowetide and staples.

At 9:30 a.m., July 09, 2008, Blogger Ben said...

These sorts of blogs, I feel, defeat the purpose of blogging (and probably of journalism too).

For one, some of these beat writers will not hesitate to post speculation that they would never publish in the paper.

Secondly, blogs are meant to critique the media and present alternative perspectives... do these offer anything new? Or is it just a way to increase loyalty to existing news outlets.

PS: Off the posts in Ottawa is a boring read and rarely updated.

At 12:21 p.m., July 09, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, Damien Cox does a Leafs blog for the Star, but it's not very popular and few people even bother to comment.

I think the thing is that while there are official Leafs blogs out there (does Steve Simmons do one at the Sun?) Leafs fans don't read them because they're more critical of the Leafs than all the Leaf hater blogs out there.

At 12:29 p.m., July 09, 2008, Blogger James Mirtle said...

Secondly, blogs are meant to critique the media and present alternative perspectives...

Disagree entirely. A blog is a medium and can be used to relay any sort of information. It's a terrific tool for a beat writer given the ability to post something quickly and to interact with readers and other bloggers.

Just because many blogs out there are critical of the media doesn't mean that's part of their primary function. My site's a good example.

At 4:44 p.m., July 13, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 10:51 a.m., July 15, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

www.redwingscentral.com has a good Red Wings blog from beat writer Bruce McLeod, and if you look under "Media Watch," it has RSS news from newspapers and blogs from each NHL team using the dropdown box ....... so instead of checking a million different sites, you can just get it all in one spot, which is handy.

At 3:52 p.m., July 21, 2008, Blogger JP said...

Corey Masisak, the WTimes' Caps beat writer, blogs at "In The Room," and is quite good.

At 10:14 p.m., August 06, 2008, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I object to Sabre's Edge being included, it's pretty clear Bucky and company have zero access to Sabres management.

5 Years/25 million!

At 6:11 p.m., September 27, 2010, Blogger Author said...

I've updated your list James w/ all the new blogs & any url changes



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