I’ve avoided this topic of late because, well, I don’t really gives two shits about whether Erik Karlsson is giving out canned answers or clichés about how hard the team is working or how well they played.
Frankly, I was hoping that this non-story would just fade away.
I suppose on one hand, it’s easy for me to say this. Karlsson’s decision to avoid the media doesn’t affect me and it doesn’t affect this blog. Moreover, I’m not a casual fan.
Thanks advent of social media like Twitter, I don’t don’t rely exclusively upon a journalist’s access to create a snapshot of what an athlete is like in the real world for the same reasons that I dismiss fans or the media talking about a player’s leadership skills.
Unless you’re with these guys on a regular basis when the lights and the cameras are off, how the hell are you ever going to get a truly accurate depiction of what they’re like as people?
Or maybe it’s just that I don’t care.
So long as Erik Karlsson performs and is respected and well-liked by his teammates, I couldn’t really care less about his rapport with the media.
But, that’s all we’re talking about this morning.
After using a few opportunities to mention it as part of his ‘Cheap Seats’ pieces, in today’s Ottawa Sun, Don Brennan spent the better part of an article appealing to Erik Karlsson to break his silence.
Shortly afterwards, the only Norris Trophy winner in Senators history extended his streak of being unavailable any time other than after games, too. He remains 0-for-2014.
I don't know for sure why we're getting stiffed by Karlsson. I do know that on New Year’s Eve, he tweeted something about 2013 being the worst year of his life, and that my bosses wanted me to ask him why.
In fairness to Brennan, he is doing his job.
If his employer asked him to talk to Erik Karlsson about his New Year’s tweet (seen below), then he has to do that.
— Erik Karlsson (@ErikKarlsson65) January 1, 2014
And conversely, Karlsson has to know by now that he lives in the in the social media era and that whatever he puts out on Twitter for the world to see, could be subject to probing questions by the media.
Shutting out the journalists and beat writers who cover this team and supplement their articles or pieces with quotes because, I’m assuming, you don’t want to answer questions pertaining to that tweet, isn’t helping matters.
You can’t begrudge them for doing their job; however, you sure as hell can resent them for drawing more attention to what clearly is a personal issue that should be kept personal.
As I mentioned earlier, we live in a social media age where information flows quickly and freely. I find it hard to believe that in this era, a journalist who spends this much time around arenas would not have a clue what Karlsson’s tweet referred to.
Brennan can spin his position by writing, “If it's personal, all he has to say is he wants to keep his private life private. That's cool. I wouldn't push him. I'd respect that.”
If you respected Erik Karlsson’s private life, you would have simply asked the Senators’ PR group to find out the answer.
Instead you appealed to the player through a newspaper article obviously designed with the intent to draw more attention to it, create a hot button issue and generate some pageviews.
That’s cool, I don’t respect that.