Each week, The Reporters put their thumbs out to the good and the bad in the world of sports. This week, they discuss the journalists that covered Lance Armstrong, the World Baseball Classic, Alex Kovalev, and the NHL's attempts to apologize for the lockout.
Bruce Arthur, National Post: My thumb is up to the journalists who never believed Lance Armstrong, who were never cowed from the truth, chief among them David Walsh of the Sunday Times and Paul Kimmage the ex-cyclist. Both of them were sued by powers in cycling, one by Lance and one by the International Cycling Union, but neither of which ever bought into the mythmaking and neither of which ever back down. David Walsh first believed that Lance Armstrong was dirty in 1999 and he never wavered from that stance. History proved he was right..
Steve Simmons, Sun Media: My thumb is down to the American roster in the World Baseball Classic and it's not about who's on the team, it's about who is not on the team. Justin Verlander is not there, David Price is not there. That's the last two Cy Young Award winners in the American League. Mike Trout, the best young player in baseball, is not there. Buster Posey, the National League MVP, is not there. For this event to succeed, and it's a great event, it needs American traction and it needs American involvement and it needs the best American players on the roster.
Michael Farber, Sports Illustrated: My thumb is up to the other old guy, Alex Kovalev, 39, who had a goal and two assists in his Florida debut. Now Kovalev on a given night will give both teams a good chance to win, but he's an artist, that was his nickname in Montreal, and he adds to the league and he could be a lot of fun to watch.
Dave Hodge, TSN: My thumb is down to the lamest of the attempts by NHL teams to apologize for the lockout, to make fans forgive and forget. Free popcorn - wow! The last time you felt the need to say "I'm sorry", did it cross your mind that "free popcorn" would make things right? Of course, there were better deals than that. Let's say you parked for free and paid half price for a second ticket and bought a discounted jersey and ate a one-dollar hot dog and drank a half-off beer - now you're even with the scoundrels, right? Or try this - smile if you see a good game - that'll make you feel better.