Chad Lucas Will No Longer Be Covering Rainmen

So I suspected as much, but thought I’d wait for confirmation prior to posting it, but Chad Lucas is one of those people who will be let go as a result of the massive lay offs at the Chronicle Herald.

The newspaper business is in dire straights for various reasons and people more qualified to comment on it have typed a great many words on the subject – use google and you’ll find some good commentary I am sure.   In Halifax we’ve seen the loss of a number of good reporters and it’s unfortunate that Chad is among those being let go.  The Herald had a number of reporters like Chad who represented a dying breed of reporter: the beat reporter.  In many ways it’s a miracle that the Herald had a basketball reporter at all, but as basketball fans we were blessed to have regular updates on high school, university, college and pro ball from someone who spent most of their time covering these stories rather than covering a half dozen other things.  Being immersed in the context of the stories and having a bit more time to dig around and fit pieces together shows in the writing and it’s sad as a basketball fan to lose the kind of in depth reporting that we’re all used to. (It’s perhaps even more sad that we’re likely to lose the remaining beat reporters at the court house and other places as well)

Lucas was always very friendly with me, and never saw me as the enemy or competetition.  I think he saw this blog the same way I do:  an adjunct to the newspaper reporting where I gave unqualified opinions, shared unsourced gossip and provided a place for fans to talk about the team (and often discuss the things Lucas wrote about in the paper).

He is an excellent writer and he was never scared to dig into the business side of the Rainmen, the ABA and the PBL which I felt pushed him to another level.  Often reporters (usually due to time constraints) take people 100% at their word and don’t dig around, I don’t think Lucas could ever be accused of that.  His actual analysis of basketball was excellent and while he rarely got into details in print, his blog often broke down the strengths and weaknesses of the Rainmen with more clarity than I ever have.

The Rainmen have benefited from media coverage that has been unparalled in the minor leagues over the last two years and halfway through their first season they suffered a blow when the Daily News shut down, the loss of Lucas as a beat reporter will no doubt continue to erode the amount and quality of coverage they get.

It is really too bad that Lucas will no longer be writing for the Herald – both due to the loss of excellent coverage of basketball, and because he’s a good person who lost his job due to no fault of his own.  I hope he can quickly find a new job (I think a book on the post-2000 ABA still needs to be written) and he’s more than welcome to come sit in sections 22 and 23 with all of us.  Heck, I know some folks in the section have extra seats that often go unused and I am sure he’s more than welcome to make use of them.

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8 thoughts on “Chad Lucas Will No Longer Be Covering Rainmen

  1. I’ll miss Chad Lucas’ basketball stuff a lot. This is a real shame and I hope he gets to continue his craft elsewhere.

    Permit me just for a minute to rant about how I think this whole thing is backward. Newspapers are indeed in trouble all over the continent and by my cancelling my subscription after the Herald cuts were announced it can be argued I’m part of the problem and not part of the answer. But I think the Herald and all the other papers have it backward.

    Confining my comments to the Herald, if anything, they need more beat reporters like Lucas, not less. Nobody reads the Herald to find out what’s going on in the Gaza Strip, Washington DC, Skydome, or Amy Winehouse’s bedroom. Those issues might interest some people, but those people who are interested in these things don’t get their info from the newspaper. They get it on TV or on the ‘Net. The Herald shouldnm’t print any of it, honestly. The Herald needs to be 95% local stuff.

    Other newspapers are starting to “get it”. Unlike the Herald, for instance, the Financial Post does not print stock prices in the paper. If the bloody Financial Post, a business paper, has figured out that stock prices aren’t worth the ink, because people check their portfolios online or watch CNBC or whatever, it’s time the Herald woke up.

    Last month the Herald was schlepping four page reprints of their coverage of the inauguration of President Osama, “yours for the cost of $5” or whatever. How many of those do you think they sold? I’m guessing not many. Anyone with a fervent case of Obamamania found their souvenirs elsewhere.

    If the Herald wants to be relevant and survive, they need to offer the public something we’ll actually pay for because we can’t get it anywhere else. By driving up readership, they drive up ad rates. What can we not get in saturation doses elsewhere? Chad Lucas, the Rainmen and AUS sports. Coverage of the halfwits on City Council. Previews and reviews of concerts and theatre in town. Stories about our community and province that aren’t all over TV and the ‘Net.

    Some city dailies may wake up to this, go local, and see their readership and ad rates jump. Some won’t catch on before going under.

    In the mean time, people like Chad Lucas get to lose their jobs.

  2. I agree with that 100%, bluenose. I think the wire services are still important, but local newspapers need to provide something that both national newspapers/website and local blogs can’t cover. Big national outlets can’t provide local coverage, and most blogs/websites can’t do in depth and investigative work. People like Lucas are the exact folks that papers should be investing in.

    City council reporters, court reporters, legislative reporters, AUS/high school sports, etc. are the niche that the Herald should be trying to exploit.

  3. That’s a shame that Chad is being let go. He has a real passion for local sports. A true advocate of Halifax sports at all levels.

  4. Sorry to see you go, Chad. You provided great sports coverage that I looked forward to reading, At Rainmen games, I knew my heckle was good when you would turn around and laugh. Hope you land on your feet and keep writing.

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