New York Post columnist Phil Mushnick is angry at ESPN. Just look how his latest column begins. Via the New York Post:
"There is nothing so broken within ESPN that couldn’t be fixed with a small but well-aimed nuclear warhead."
Dear. God. What did ESPN do now? What did they do that was so bad Mushnick would like to see them blown up?
"Sunday, shortly after the world learned Bryant had been killed, ESPN got to work doing what it does — worming in on the story to fabricate its first-with-the-most presence. ESPN posted these graphics: “Breaking News: Kobe Bryant dies in helicopter crash at age 41. Reports: Lakers legend dies at 41, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reports (1st reported by TMZ).”"
So, ESPN's most plugged-in NBA reporter confirmed the news that one of the biggest basketball stars of all time had died. And they still credited TMZ. That doesn't really sound so bad. There must have been more.
"ESPN’s online reporting of Bryant’s death was no more credible: “Sources have confirmed to ESPN’s Wojnarowski” that Bryant is dead."
Did they not? Is this any more egregious than Mushnick's home paper starting their initial Kobe Bryant story like this:
"Legendary NBA player Kobe Bryant has died in a California helicopter crash, reports said Sunday."
The Post referenced TMZ's report a few sentences later. It just seems like they were trying to report the news. There are plenty of things to be made at ESPN about - and Mushnick has picked out a bunch for his latest column - but getting confirmation on the biggest sports story of the decade probably isn't one of them.