I’ve never done anything for five years. I’ve never been in a relationship that lasted five years. Growing up I never attended the same school for five years. Aside from my childhood home, I haven’t once lived in the same apartment or house for five years. I haven’t held down the same job for five years. I didn’t live in Chicago for five years. I’ve only been back in New York for three years. College only lasts four years.
Five years ago the sports media landscape was different. The idea of having credentialed access to games wasn’t even a dream, it was a possibility I had never considered. The TrueHoop Network was nothing more than a gleam in Henry Abbott’s eye. The thought that the 48 Minutes of Hell staff — who am I kidding, I never thought this blog would have a staff — would work with ESPN never crossed my mind.
The kind of writing this blog featured was very different. My writing was raw and confused and ebullient. There was no reporting. I was still figuring out what it meant to write about sports, to write about an event that your readership watched with their own two eyes. That’s what makes sports journalism so unique and so dynamic: I’m not telling you how a congressional bill got passed or what caused the market to spike that day. We’re having a conversation about something that we both witnessed, and that forces me to work harder and think more seriously. Five years ago I had yet to learn that lesson.
Five years ago the Spurs were coming off a title, and it seemed as if contention was a luxury we’d be allowed to enjoy for only another season or two. Five years ago I dreamed of one day meeting Gregg Popovich and Tim Duncan, whom I had adored ever since they brought San Antonio its first title in 1999, the summer before I started high school.
Five years is a long time for something to last. Before today, I had never really done anything for five years. Now I guess I can say I have, because five years ago today I founded 48 Minutes of Hell.
Thank you to Tim Varner and Andrew McNeill and Matt Tynan and Jesse Blanchard and Scott Sereday and David Menendez Aran and Aaron McGuire and anyone else who has ever taken the time to donate their talent and insight to this blog. Thank you to Matt Moore and J.E. Skeets and Henry Abbott and Kevin Arnovitz and everyone whose support has been essential to the success of this blog.
Most importantly, thank you for reading. When I started this blog, I never thought anyone would read it. But now that you’re here, I don’t know what we’d do without you.