When Rick Reilly demanded kudos for breaking the story about Ben Roethlisberger’s shoulder injury -- after millions of viewers had witnessed two Kansas City defensemen pancaking the Steelers quarterback in the third quarter of Pittsburgh's 16-13 overtime win over the hapless Chiefs on Monday Night Football -- the ESPN.com columnist and renowned golf scribbler had the sports world shaking its collective head.
Reilly, whose online bio notes he covers "major golf events, including the Masters, Open Championship, Ryder Cup and US Open," surely does not need to beg for Twitter followers to burnish his rep as one of the best and most highly touted sportswriters in the business. Yet, there he was, believing he was off-air and shamelessly instructing host Stuart Scott to "say I had this first on Twitter."
Little did he know that ESPN cameras were broadcasting, in glorious high-def, his entire credit-grab and Steve Young’s "Are you frickin’ kidding me?" reaction.
The saddest part of Reilly’s attention-getting move? It wasn’t even that he was probably not the first reporter to break the news, as Jay Busbee noted; it was that he needlessly tossed red meat to his many detractors, had Mike Francesca saying he "ruined his career by going to ESPN ... He’s terrible on TV," and really just handed Deadspin his head on a platter.