There’s a lot of great things being said about the Connor McDavid documentary, “Whatever It Takes”. Among the positive feedback is that it was so revealing, taking an inside look at the decision McDavid faced and his recovery process. The details of the severity of McDavid’s injury were covered extensively and it gave fans, fellow teammates and those that follow the NHL a glimpse as to how dedicated, special and unique McDavid is, both as a person and freak athlete.
That said, it’s these details that have a lot of media a little choked around the Edmonton area.
Frank Seravalli was a guest on TSN 1260 Tuesday morning and said that there are some members of the media base in Edmonton who regularly cover the team who are bit upset the Oilers kept so much of what they knew to themselves. As you can tell when you watch the documentary, even Oilers new GM Ken Holland was in the dark about a lot of what was wrong with McDavid. When Holland was first hired, he wasn’t told he might have to move forward as the GM without his best player.
So, imagine, if Holland knew very little, you can only ascertain what the media was made aware of — nothing. Seravalli said, “reporters, especially ones that are around that team a lot fee like they were misled by the Edmonotn Oilers.”
Seravalli explains those same members of the media couldn’t cover the story, they believed the injury was serious, they weren’t even given inside information or trusted with the mandate to keep it quiet. Basically, the relationships they thought they’d built with the organization were completely discarded and one of the biggest stories of the year was kept completely from them. He says, “That raises questions about how the Oilers conducted business here.”
What The Media Is Claiming
Part of the issue seems to be that the documentary was made as way to make money for the Oilers organization or hide the truth during a season ticket drive. The claim is that the Oilers profited off of a very disheartening story and while they don’t know if McDavid had any say in how this was put together, he was clearly part of the production.
These same media are claiming the people had a right to know, that fans want to know what’s going on with their team and that not having McDavid for the season might have affected a lot of decisions. It was these decisions (panic might be a better word) that the Oilers were also trying to avoid and another reason things were kept so tight-lipped.
The Media Has A Point, But Is Still Wrong
Understandably, some media (not all) are upset by the Oilers decision to be so secretive. And, while they may raise an eyebrow moving forward and perhaps there’s a level of trust that is now gone between them and the Oilers organization, that doesn’t make them right.
First, these are the same media types who are in a limited group of people who are “allowed” to cover the team — the Oilers are notorious for not approving credentials for reputable bloggers and other websites. Yet, many of those people aren’t upset.
Second, the Oilers were right to fear the worst. Had the public been made aware of just how bad McDavid’s injury was, widespread panic would have ensued, ticket sales would have fallen off and everyone would have had an opinion. The last thing McDavid needed was input from anyone and everyone not attached to his decision.
Instead, what he did get was hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of professionals helping him with his rehab and the input from people he trusted. He also got the space to do what was needed and the result is that he’s back and tearing up the NHL in 2020.
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