Many of you, our readers, are smart, your decision to visit Deadspin notwithstanding. See what you can get out of this blog post by Sports Illustrated managing editor Chris Stone and “Time Inc. Sports Group digital editor” Mark McClusky, hailing the ailing magazine’s, uh, “transformational digital partnership” with Fox Sports.
So far as I can tell, the news is as follows: Good buddies Tom Verducci and Ken Rosenthal will team up to do some baseball coverage; some SI guys will appear on some presumably digital Fox Sports programs of lesser consequence; and SI and Fox Sports will retweet each other sometimes.
“Over time, we’ll find new ways to collaborate,” Stone and McClusky write, “marrying the deep traditions of storytelling and innovation that we both bring to this partnership.” Possibly this is a tantalizing proposition, if you can get excited about such potential SI-Fox joint ventures as, like, a podcast where Peter King and Chris Chase give updates on their fantasy football teams, or where Jason Whitlock blames cyber-humans for his inability to send a creepy Instagram DM to a copy of the Sports Illustrated swimsuit edition.
Also, the following words appear in sequence, for reasons that are unclear:
After all, it’s the conversations and connections that sports create that draw us to them. This year has been one of the most thrilling, challenging, and in time may be revealed to be the most transformative in sports history. And for each of those moments, from the death of Muhammad Ali to the Cavs stunning comeback to win the NBA title to Peyton Manning’s Super Bowl win and retirement, we’ve come together to think about what the moment meant, to share our perspective, and to understand its impact. Both Sports Illustrated and Fox Sports have been crucial contributors to that conversation; now, as we join forces, we’ll lead them even more.
People like to talk about sports with their pals. In 2016 they liked to talk about sports a lot, and this is a good time of year to talk about sports. Therefore Sports Illustrated and Fox Sports will share baseball reporters.
Probably “Pairing up with a radioactively atrocious ESPN-reject Flat-Earther leper colony is good because of [Coldplay lyrics]” is the most positive and triumphal—the most transformational!—possible face to put on a move that from pretty much every angle appears curious, if not grim. Still, if you can pull anything else of value or interest out of this blog post, please put it in the comments below.
This post will be updated when SI media reporter Richard Deitsch reports on which relevant sports-media executives have not responded to his requests for comment.