Thursday, March 26, 2009

Battling for Bosh: Feschuk v. Grange

When Dave Feschuk of the Toronto Star broke the story earlier this week of the legal matters between Chris Bosh and the estranged mother of his child Allison Mathis, I’ll admit I entered the story with a roll of the eyes rather than carrying interest. It was not that the story did not deserve attention, it was the source releasing the information that prompted the eye roll. Had The Star gone with Doug Smith to initially break the news I'd be far more compliant in absorbing the news I’m sure. However the reputation that preceds Feschuk is one that can make a regular reader a little hesitant.

After news broke of Bosh's response to these claims via Michael Grange over at the Globe and Mail, Feschuk today wrote an oddly bitter sounding report summing up the Chris Bosh defence for Star readers. And this is where it starts to get fun!

“It's at this point that you respectfully question the tight-lipped strategy of Chris Bosh and his advisors” is how Feschuk starts off the piece, followed up with thinly veiled shots at the Raptors superstar throughout the rest of the article:

…it wasn't until today that Bosh, the Raptors all-star, and someone from Bosh's legal team showed up in a newspaper giving something that resembled a respectable explanation for the image-damaging mess. That would have been more than three days after the Star, in seeking a balanced picture of a court case filed in Maryland that paint Bosh as a deadbeat dad, began seeking comment from no less than Bosh, Bosh's agent, Bosh's manager-cousin and Bosh's teams, legal and basketball, and got almost exclusively silence.

Someone sounds a tad bitter, n’est pas? Well, alright, so there may be a point here since Feschuk did want to get both sides of the story before releasing his piece yet was denied. Not necessarily too obvious here.

But don't worry, it gets to that obvious point:

There are more unanswered questions, to be sure, and Bosh's legal representatives are expected to file a response to Mathis's complaint in the coming days. On Wednesday night, when Bosh was approached by this scribe with some essential questions that still probably needed to be answered, Bosh's business manager summoned Bosh's entourage to exit the premises and Bosh, taking orders, turned his back before the question could be asked.

…Before he exited the Air Canada Centre, he spoke with another reporter. "I just wanted to get everything sorted out, that's all I can say," Bosh told Grange. "I took the initiative because I know how things are. I didn't want any complications."

No complications, indeed.

Alright, so if I was fishing before I’d say it’s pretty clear now, THAT scribe had his ego bruised with this matter and he’s letting the world know about it!

Whether it was right or not for the Bosh camp to wait until after Mathis made things public may be debatable; it’s quite possible that Bosh’s lawyer, agent, et al were simply not ready to start into a media battle. Even if they knew there were chances this could and would explode, it's not the easiest thing to deal with or even prepare for. Plus, in matters like these, celebrities and athletes alike generally take a more reactionary stance to allegations.

However getting things clouded with one’s emotions does not help the reading audience when composing breaking news reports. Having never met Dave Feschuk personally I am not here to judge his character in any manner, but the man does deliver rather negative and at times sensational articles on the Toronto sports scene. Cleary word has gotten around about that, as it was the Globe’s Grange that landed the Bosh exclusive this time.

As a result I’d say it’s no surprise in either case, both that Feschuk broke a story labeling Chris Bosh as a "deadbeat" and that Grange received Bosh’s response to the accusations. But it sure is entertaining to watch! And serves as a healthy reminder to all writers to be careful how one carries themselves with their job as well.

Team Bosh finally delivers their side of the story (Toronto Star)

1 comment:

Down Goes Brown said...

Yet another example of something I wrote about during the Wilson/Berger controversy:

... one of the most frustrating sins in modern journalism (is) thinking your audience is actually interested in journalism. We're not. We're interested in what you're covering, not the act of you covering it.

You had a story, a source snubbed you, and then he talked to someobody else. I really, really don't care. Stop wasting newsprint.