11.17.2006

George Michael is Never Gonna Dance Again

One of the few perks about living in Washington, DC is the surplus of great sports personalities the city has to offer. I'm not talking about the players (although the city is lucky to have both Clinton Portis and Gilbert Arenas). I'm talking about the journalists. Sally Jenkins and Thomas Boswell doth do good work at The Washington Post. Jenkins isn't my favorite and Boswell is a bit too old-fashioned, but, to deny the quality of the work they've done throughout their careers would be unfair. We also have Tony Kornheiser who has been terrible as a Monday Night Football commentator. Don't let that distract you from his years of great work on ESPN, the Post, and on radio.

Michael Wilbon is such a great sports writer that he gets his own paragraph. He's so good that I kind of want to hug him. Once I ran into him at a McDonald's and he ordered a burger with no onions so I know he's my type of guy. He let me cut him in line too! How courteous! In short, I have a massive man-crush on Michael Wilbon.

Of course, the local sports television scene is dominated by one man, and only one man. He has revolutionized the way sports are covered on television. That man is WRC's own George Michael. And he is stepping down from his Sports Machine and his regular weekday sports anchor duties.

Let me be the first to say "good riddance."

George Michael is responsible for the worst kind of sports journalism. The kind where an old dude screams at you and makes snide little remarks about the opposing team. The kind of anchor that wishes he could laugh at his own lame jokes. The kind of journalism where you achieve access to Redskins Park by giving ridiculously softball interviews that make a mockery of the term "sports journalism." The kind of journalism where you show highlights of a dog show and refer to the poodle as an "AU Princess."

Ok, that last one is kind of funny, but you still can't say that.

Michael's on-air personality, that of the pompous jackass, was grating. It was like he was trying to ruin sports for me. Some of the better ESPN anchors are self-deprecating. George Michael was the opposite. Someone whose opinion of himself was more important than whatever the Nationals were doing on a July evening. This quote solidifies my opinion of him:

Michael said he made the decision after NBC, which owns WRC, announced significant layoffs and staff cuts.

"I told them, that if I have to lay anyone off, if I have to get rid of any of my staff, then I'm going to take the first bullet," Michael said.

Yeah, George, you're the man. Fighting for the little guy. I'm sure this decision had nothing to do with your advanced age and the fact that your body was broken a year ago when you fell off your motherfucking horse.

The way the AP is fawning over Michael makes me think that I'm a bit out of the loop. Apparently, George Michael was an incredible trailblazer. I've only been watching him since 2001. Those five years were unbearable. I used to watch the local news just for sports. With Michael it was the exact opposite. As soon as I saw him, the television went dark.

20 comments:

  1. I can't stand George Michael either. He's a big blow hard. The guys dumps all over the Capitals, Nationals, DC United but he won't push the envelope against the beloved Redskins.

    His coverage of rodeos and pro wrestling was embarrassing too.

    I like the sports guys on Channel 7 better.

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  2. leave the sports commentary to deadspin, dude.

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  3. One thing I was shocked to learn a few years ago around some anniversary for the Sports Machine is that George Michael is a intensely religious man. I'm not implying that that's a bad thing, just an interesting element of the man that is Michael.

    My big thing w/ GM was his utter lack of knowledge of hockey and the Capitals in particular. It's like he never even made an effort. Granted, nobody in DC cares about the Craps, but jeez, if you're gonna cover rodeos and dog shows, you could at least learn the names of the players on one of your hometown professional sports teams.

    Long live Jim Vance.

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  4. "George Michael is responsible for the worst kind of sports journalism."

    George Michael wrote this post?

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  5. LincolnParkerNovember 17, 2006

    GM is fine.

    Believe me, I've lived in about a dozen media markets in the U.S., and as far as local sports anchors go, you can do A LOT worse than George Michael.

    He's just been around WRC-TV for so long with all those others that people have a weird attachment.

    Not an incredible trailblazer, but The Sports Machine was a big deal back in the day. It was like SportsCenter before ESPN came around.

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  6. Dude's been high as a kite ever since he was knocked off of his high horse.

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  7. "His coverage of rodeos and pro wrestling was embarrassing too."

    Damn. I really wanted to be the one to say this.

    Michael has been a total hack for the past 15 years, but I have to say that back in the 80's -- when Baltimore and Washington were actually fielding competitive sports teams year in and year out -- he was a lot of fun. He and Vance were hysterical together.....keep in mind that these were during Vance's big coke years.

    Seriously, though, I loved watching George Michael back then.

    I also loved watching He-Man and GI Joe cartoons back then, so there you go.....

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  8. If reruns of He-Man and G.I. Joe cartoons came on in primetime today I might give them a shot, but I digress.

    What I liked (see hated) about Michael's delivery was the way that he had like two segways in his repertoire -- "Let me take you out to the MCI Center..."

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  9. WHAT?! Vance was a big coke head? I guess that shouldn't surprise me, given that it WAS the 80s, and he DID rock the 'Fro, but still. One of my idols has fallen from off of his pedistal. I feel crushed, like when my parents had to explain what Pee Wee Herman had done that would cause his mugshot to be on the cover of the newspaper.

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  10. Rusty is not old enough to remember the 1980's

    PS3's for sale. $3500. New in box.

    Anyone interested leave a reply and I will get back to you.

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  11. yawn........

    its pretty obvious at this point that youve got nothing to say. It also looks like your hits have dropped alot (the comments are way down). way to fuck up a great oppertunity.

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  12. Here you go, douchebag:
    http://www.sitemeter.com/?a=stats&s=s17hoyasuxa&r=36

    My comments are down because I turned off anonymous commenting for a short while.

    And you're right, the last week was a bad week for the blog. Not much to say. I'm sure it's a missed opportunity that will haunt me for the rest of my life.

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  13. Don't forget GM is also responsible for the kind of sports journalism where you pay coaches and players to appear on your show for softball interviews.

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  14. why i hate your blog as of lately- two maybe three new posts a week. snooze.

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  15. I guess he just has guilty feet.

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  16. Sorry, I hate this too. But I'm legitimately busy at work.

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  17. I'm glad to see him go as well... And by the way, I hate onions on hamburgers as well. Good post :)

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  18. I have always disliked him for the exact reasons you listed. In fact, I didn't watch NBC local news b/c I knew I'd have to listen to him when the sports came on. However, NBC does have some good female sports personalities that have been run out (rumored to be b/c of Michael) that maybe can do the type of work they want.

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  19. Maybe instead of taking an hour long lunch break every day and walking aimlessly throughout the city twiddling your thumbs, you can write a blog entry.

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  20. kornholer is a fucking idiot. he doesn't know shit about football, considering he's a sport writer for the post. I think we should take Kornholer and George Michael, stick them in a closet, and then burn the fucking house down.

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