What to Cover

Something really bothered my during my visit last week to the Providence Bruins’ press box.

I mentioned that there were three other members of the media on hand for the game.  I have no problem naming the organizations they represent; The Pro Hockey News, the Attleboro Sun Chronicle, and WBRU Radio.

If you’re from the Northeast, is there a name you do not see?  How about the Providence Journal, the hometown paper of the P-Bruins!

I found it absolutely amazing that the local paper did not have a reporter on hand for the game.  What makes it worse is the paper’s newsroom is literally across the street from the Dunkin’ Donuts Center!

I tried rationalize why they were not there.  Maybe the paper was tied up with local college basketball coverage seeing that Providence is a big hoops town?  No.  Providence College and the University of Rhode Island were not slated to play until the next day. 

Even though the Red Sox had just opened its Spring Training camp, there were no extra reporters than normal on hand in Fort Myers.  So why the slight?

The P-Bruins say the Journal does staff some home games, but not all of them.  This begs for a discussion on what appears to be the effects of the shrinking newspaper sports departments and their casualties.

The P-Bruins are Providence’s lone professional franchise, and the city’s daily apparently does not find it important enough to cover all its home games.  I’m not calling on the paper to devote a full-time reporter to the beat, or even suggest the paper should send a reporter out on the road with the team.  But goodness, all the paper needs to do is assign a stringer to cover all the home games!  Hell, I’ll do it! 

The practice of the Providence Journal unfortunately is a disturbing trend seen at sports departments across the country.  We all know it comes down to dollars and cents.  I’m not a P-Bruins butt-boy, but it seems to me that by neglecting your lone local professional sports franchise, no matter the sport, you are providing a disservice to the dedicated readers of your sports page.

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