Puck the Media Will Go On Semi-Hiatus, but For Good Reason

(NOTE: The contest winners for our Millionth Pageview Prizes will still be named tomorrow at 10:00 AM ET. Please join us for that to see if you’ve won NHL SWAG!)

This is very difficult for me to do, but it will be totally bittersweet. I must leave Puck the Media for now. Somewhat. Ratings stories and announcers/open threads will stay, but I feel that I can no longer comment on NHL TV issues regarding VERSUS/NBC without it being a conflict of interest.

If you haven’t heard already, I have been hired by VERSUS.com, at least through the end of the regular season, as an NHL writer/blogger for them. It is a dream come true, but it can’t be denied that it may give the appearance of favoritism to either network, and I wouldn’t want to do that. So, for now, the job is until the end of the regular season, and it may go past that. Until I am done with that, I will post ratings and announcers, and that is it for awhile, in addition to contest winners tomorrow.

I need to thank everyone who has ever read Puck the Media, whether it came through a link on another blog, on Twitter, or you knew my name from somewhere else and gave me a shot, I thank you immensely. This has been a true passion project for me for two and a half years, and it pains me to have to cut back on it beyond ratings and announcers. However, writing hockey is my dream, and I feel it would be unfair to myself if I didn’t give it 100%.

I want to thank all the writers, whether they be from blogs (Wyshynski, Sean Leahy, Ryan Lambert, Chris Botta, everyone at Pension Plan Puppets, Paulsen at Sports Media Watch, Wrap Around Curl, Jon Press, Kevin Schultz, Brian Metzer) or traditional media (Tom Gulitti, Ted Starkey, Adrian Dater), as well as folks at the NHL (Kerry McGovern, Schuyler Baehman, Nirva Milord), VERSUS (Leslie Byxbee, Meier Ravich, and in the past Katie Bradshaw) and NBC (Christopher McCloskey) for all their help in making this something special for me, and hopefully the readers.

Others I need to thank include all the NHL broadcasters who were so kind in giving their time, answers and advice. The complete list is in the interview section, but Mike Emrick, John Forslund, Joe Beninati, Jack Edwards (especially), Mike Lange, and Gord Miller must be thanked because they are living my dream, and took a few minutes of their time to help impart some of their wisdom on me. Also, thanks to Pierre McGuire, Brian Engblom, Liam McHugh, Steve Kouleas and many more for giving their time to me. It will not be forgotten.

So, this isn’t goodbye, but it is the end of an era of sorts here. Remember, ratings and announcer listings will stay, and I hope that’s something you’ll continue to check up on during the post-season if I’m still gone. For now, however, I want to thank everyone who ever read, commented, e-mailed, or chatted with me, as you made this a truly fulfilling experience. I consider myself remarkably blessed to have been able to do something that meant so much to me this early in my life. I can only hope the rest of the way matches up. Thank you for your support.

19 Responses to Puck the Media Will Go On Semi-Hiatus, but For Good Reason

  1. Derek says:

    Have you considered someone to sub in while you are @ Versus?

  2. Ryan says:

    Congrats on the new gig, Steve. I’ve been following this blog for at least two years now – after another hockey media blog whose name I’ve long since forgotten disappeared – and I’m sure you’ll do just as well for VERSUS.

  3. Eric says:

    Good luck, Steve. Well deserved!

  4. Derek says:

    How rude of me. I forgot to say congrats and best of luck to you!

  5. Stephen says:

    Congratulations as well. Hope you do a great job as an NHL writer for VERSUS/NBC. Even though its for just the regular season, but I wish you the best of luck as well.

  6. Joel says:

    Congratulations!! I’ve been reading your blog for a long time, you’re living the dream now.

  7. TANK1 says:

    Good Luck Steve with your new job.

  8. Arthur says:

    Congrats and best of luck on the new venture. But it was painfully obvious in the last few months that you were treating the Versus/NBC merger differently and being very kind towards them. That must have been when you were asking to work for them. Well your strategy worked.

    • stevelepore says:

      Had nothing to do with it. In fact, and this is the last I’ll say about this, for two months I had felt the job wasn’t going to happen. Had no reason to be nice to them, just tried to be honest. Thank you for bringing interesting conversation to the table the past few months, it is much appreciated.

  9. Andrew says:

    Steve, any recommendations on other nhl media blogs so your fans can still get their news and optinions?

  10. Mike in Idaho says:

    Congratulations Steve and I applaud your telling everyone about your conflict of interest and acting appropriately, it is nice to see some journalistic ethics these days. Versus has been better lately but it always really bugged me when they would have announcers of the teams involved working on their games for Versus (e.g. Forslund doing a Hurricanes game on Versus) and it would usually never be mentioned that the announcer would obviously be biased. Good luck in your new job!

  11. Library Lady says:

    You mom must be so proud of you! xxoo

  12. Brian says:

    Best of luck with your new gig, and may it bring you more writing opportunities in the future. I look forward to your return to this site with your sharp commentary that many of us readers have come to love, but until then, best of luck with NBC/VERSUS. As mentioned above, you are a good man for telling everyone up front about this, rather than trying to continue on knowing there would be a conflict. Again, congratulations!

  13. Andrew says:

    Awesome opportunity!! Congratulations. I’ll definitely be reading you over at VERSUS.com

  14. Trent says:

    You should have a loser leaves town match to make it official.

  15. Ian says:

    Congratulations. Time to start reading versus.com.

  16. Chris S says:

    Congrats on the job Steve! I’ve really enjoyed reading this blog and I will miss it. Good luck with Versus!

  17. Jon D says:

    Really enjoyed the blog – caught up on it on a regular basis – best of luck with Versus – dont like much of the talent over there anyway (old ESPN NHL crew fan) so go there and leave your mark – whats the deal with this blog though- anyone offering to keep it going?

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