The Original, And Still The Best

Posted by on January 3rd, 2008 in Articles

We all know that Gilbert’s blog is sets the standard for blogs by athletes (even if he doesn’t technically write it).  Now the San Francisco Chronicle is taking the next step and examining how Gilbert’s blog has changed the player-fan dynamic:

“All I know is, it’s here to stay,” said Zack Bolno, the public relations director for the Wizards, whose team rotates many of its players in video blogs (or “vlogs”) on its Web site. “It’s natural, a lot of it is extemporaneous. The players take ownership in it. And the fan reaction has been big – they want to know what’s going on in the player’s life.”

Arenas is the undisputed master of the art. Even the casual fan recognizes his ability to channel his inner Barkley and appreciates his naturally loopy charm. For this, Arenas won the 2007 Weblog Award for “Best Celebrity Blog,” and his vernacular has spawned the term “Gilbertology.” But it’s not all wit and harebrained stuff: Sometimes, Arenas makes the reporters in town feel as though he has invented a parallel universe.

“I never would have known to ask him whether he’s taking painkillers, but on his latest blog he says he wouldn’t take them because he doesn’t think that’s manly and because they made him constipated,” said Dan Steinberg, who writes the “D.C. Sports Blog” for the Washington post Web site.

“The point is that outsiders in the media often poke and prod to find the interesting details about star athletes, but if the star athletes are able to recognize those interesting details about themselves – which is possibly Gilbert’s greatest blogging attribute – then we’re sunk.”

“I feel like I’m competing with him,” said John Mitchell, the veteran NBA writer for the Washington Times. “And we’re not the only ones. Before he had his knee surgery, he announced on his blog that he had an MRI. It turns out we broke the news to the PR staff after reading it on his blog.”

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