Friday, March 23, 2012

Harvey Levin Becomes Twitter Majority Owner

...or at least it seems that way.

Harvey Levin is the managing editor of TMZ.com and TMZ on TV. If you don't know what the latter is, it's essentially a television version TMZ.com, a news website with emphasis on celebrity gossip. You know, yellow journalism.

Or, in this case, Black and Yellow journalism.

-- Aside: Yellow journalism is a type of journalism that presents little or no legitimate well-researched news and instead uses eye-catching headlines to sell more newspapers or increase traffic to blog or website. (Ignore this article's headline, that was on purpose of course.)

This offseason has already had more than its share of rumors, speculations, incorrect reports and just plain misinformation. They have involved various Pittsburgh Steelers players like Hines Ward and his retirement rumors, but have mainly centered around the present and future of Mike Wallace.

Thursday morning brought its own fun when Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee reported that Mike Wallace wanted $120 million to go to the San Francisco 49ers. ~  http://t.co/gejrbxT5

Just like that, one report gets posted and the whole of Steeler Nation fortifies itself against Mike Wallace. Cue the Twitter #Take-A-Hikes and the Facebook Fond Farewells.

The virtual backlash was immediate and vociferous. Fans already had Wallace in another uniform and the Steelers going 8-8 next year.

I've come to expect that from fans to some degree, your typical fan knows a lot less than he or she thinks she does, but I expect more from the media. Especially the local media.

Nonetheless, the media, namely Ken Laird and Scott Brown of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, jumped right into the deep end with the fans via their Twitter accounts. This was part of their exchange:

"@Ken_Laird: If Wallace is thinking he's worth 15 mil per year, have to believe a holdout is coming. #Steelers"

"@ScottBrown_Trib: @Ken_Laird Can't see this ending well."

I felt like I was reading something from the TMZ guy with the goatee. What's his name? Mike Walters?

I mean, really? Has no one ever heard of "leverage?" So, no one has ever postured regarding contract demands? Stop! Just stop it. Wallace isn't leaving & isn't holding out. He NEEDS to play to be able to take advantage of free agency next season.

Honestly, it's hilarious how a report that Wallace wants big money shocks and dismays the fans and media. While I admit to tossing around the (slight) possibility of a holdout, I maintain that the probability of it is minuscule. Again, he NEEDS to play to be a free agent next year. Plus, if he were to hold out, he wouldn't play. No play, no pay.

So, to up and assume that a holdout is coming, and that the Steelers should immediately get rid of him and take the first round pick, is ludicrous. If you suggested this, please turn in your Terrible Towel as you leave the building.

BREAKING NEWS: Jason LaCanfora just reported that Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger just broke wind while in bed with his wife. Details on whether or not he gave her a "Dutch Oven" has yet to be confirmed.

Make no mistake, Matt Barrows is reliable. This report is to be believed. Lance Williams of steelcurtainradio.com had Barrows on his podcast before the Steelers vs. 49ers game and even stated today that "Matt does solid work." - http://t.co/fRwqnMeZ

Mark Kaboly, also of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, tweeted, "I trust his report 100 percent."

So, trust in the report itself isn't in question, it's whether or not Wallace truly believes what was proposed in the report or, as I suggested earlier, was it just posturing?

The truth is that Wallace will come close to getting those numbers in 2013, unless a long-term deal is signed this year. But it will be performance based: the better the season, the higher the asking price can be pushed. As a point of example to that, Vincent Jackson got what amounts to a two year, $26 million deal after a slightly-better-than-average season.

So, it will happen. And you can't blame Wallace for asking either. The question in this instance is, "From whom?" The Steelers won't pay him that much. Period. Neither will anyone else this year, though. A great player with great potential Mike Wallace no doubt is, but just not $120 million great.

At this point, though, Wallace is basically already under contract. Why then should the Steelers pay more? Unless, of course, it's in a multi-year deal that's agreeable to BOTH sides. If not, the Steelers would still have the option of placing the franchise tag on him next year. The ball is still in the Steelers' court. They're in no rush, and rightly so.

So, don't get caught up in the TMZ journalism. (Or is it TRZ {Three River Zone} in this case?) Because fan and media reactions can be scary. And "fear leads to anger. Anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering." And I don't want you suffering...