In determining its best of the best in sports media for 2022, Sports Illustrated aimed low and achieved its goal. Among its award winners were stories on an athlete losing weight by masturbating, best social media use of the controversial Tik Tok and the Inside the NBA program that almost no one watches.
Let’s get started down this sorry trail.
Sports Illustrated selected Turner Sports/Bleacher Report personality Taylor Rooks (appearing in photo) as interviewer of the year. SI writer Jimmy Traina explains one sordid feat what put Rooks over the top:
“One day Rooks is getting Raiders tight end Darren Waller to open up in a powerful way about his drug addiction, and another she is getting a UFC fighter to admit he has tried to make weight by pleasuring himself.
“Versatility is just one of Rooks’s strengths. She always seems to ask the right questions, keeps her subjects at ease and gets them to open up more than you’d expect.”
Well that’s certainly a reporting success for the ages. Not.
Who won in the category for best use of social media?
It was former NBA player Richard Jefferson, now a pro basketball analyst with ESPN, for making great use of the controversial Chinese app TikTok. Traina wrote:
“If you still think TikTok is just videos of young people dancing, you need to wake up. TikTok is everything. Sports are a huge part of the platform and no one in the sports world makes better use of it than ESPN’s Jefferson, who has more than 1 million followers. He’ll spend a good portion of the time roasting people who make fun of him for being bald, but he also shares some great NBA stories.”
State governments are banning TikTok from official phones and computers. Like everything else in China, TikTok operates at the pleasure of the communist country’s dictatorship, so it goes without saying that it targets conservatives.
In August, TikTok permanently banned the MRCTV's account from its video platform. MRC writers Joseph Vazquez and Gabriela Pariseau wrote, "TikTok is apparently easily triggered by conservative content that doesn't serve the propaganda of its communist overlords."
The American Spectator’s Ixtu Diaz said TikTok needs to be destroyed because it exists “to influence Western culture, which they are already succeeding in doing, and to spy on Western powers, starting with the United States.”
Related: Teacher Seeks Advice From TikTockers About How To Tell His Class He’s Trans
Sports Illustrated ignored the whole TikTok controversy. Great reporting!
Finally, we have Sports Illustrated’s award for the best sports show. It’s the clown show known as Inside the NBA, featuring the ever-woke Kenny Smith, knuckleheads Charles Barkley and Shaquille O’Neal, with host Ernie Johnson. If this was the best in American sports programs in 2022, hardly anyone noticed.
Inside the NBA is TNT’s second-ranked program, but that isn’t saying much. Since the start of the NBA season this past fall, Inside the NBA’s television ratings have nose-dived. Only twice this season has it attracted two million viewers for a broadcast, and numerous games drew less than one million viewers.
Ay yi yi! If the above constitute the best sports media of the year, it was both a regrettable year and a sad statement on U.S. culture.
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