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William C. Altreuter
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Monday, February 08, 2016

The sportswriters at the Buffalo News often seem to have an adversarial relationship with the Buffalo Bills, and this is, I think, unfortunate. The relationship WNY has with this team is deep and wide: when the Bills win, everybody's Monday is a little brighter; and when they lose it's always like a rainy day. Because of the way they are reported the middle of the week and the off season frequently feels defensive and flinchy, and since it's just a game that seems wrong to me. This came to mind when I was in Miami last fall, reading the coverage of the Dolphins in the Herald. The Dolphins at that point were more or less tied in the standings with the Bills, and were a pretty terrible team, but the columns and the reportage had a ring of optimism to it. The News, on the other hand, has probably run a fair number of capable football people out of town, and one of those people was Wade Phillips. It was nice to see ol' Wade, a Buffalo kind of guy if there ever was one, get the props he deserved last night: that Denver defense was as good as it gets.

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My sports fandom is flickering on life-support right now and will likely be completely dead within a few years (concussions, Peyton Manning turning out to be as big a thug as any of 'em, lather rinse repeat), but the NEWS's sports writers are, so far as I can tell, a singularly awful bunch. They're wildly inconsistent, such as the way they will call for "blowing the organization up" when either the Bills or Sabres are just trundling along in mediocre fashion, but when someone ACTUALLY blows the organization up, why then, it's off to the fainting couch. They all seem to make sport of trolling fans in social media, and there's this off-putting sense of entitlement that illustrates to me exactly why Cam Newton wasn't exactly eager to go fall on his sword after the Super Bowl, in front of the Jerry "Ralph won't return my calls!" Sullivans of the world. Basically, I can't stand this town's sports writers.
 

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