Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Chad Hedrick on NBC's Today

By Robert H. Kelly

Chad Hedrick was interviewed by Matt Lauer on NBC’s Today this morning. They discussed his bronze medal performance in the 1500 meters and the “difficulty” between him and fellow USA speed skater Shani Davis.

Hedrick praised Davis and even said he was happy for Davis’ silver medal performance.

He stated that he and Davis have different views on things, and he felt betrayed by Davis’ refusal to participate in the team pursuit.

After the interview, Lauer said that Davis was also invited by NBC to appear and chose to decline.

After Davis’ actions in the post race press conference yesterday, there is no wonder he chose to decline the interview. He cannot seem to get the idea that you must present a positive image to the public in order to be viewed in a positive light.

I am not saying that NBC has the best coverage of the Olympics. It does treat athletes and teams in different ways. However, they are the main media source for people in the United States on the Winter Olympics Many of those same people will take what is presented by NBC as gospel.

Many of the posts on this site and others are defending Davis and chastising Hedrick. I just don’t see the logic of the views. Davis is a loner and has alienated himself from his fellow USA speed skaters. For him to say it would have been nice to get a handshake from Hedrick after his victory sounded like a desperate attempt to salvage some dignity and perhaps to be considered part of the team.

In order to be part of a team, you need to embrace the team concept. Being a part of the team means contributing to the team effort, living in the same area of the Olympic Village as your teammates, supporting all your teammates, and placing the goals and objectives of the team first in one's priorities. That is what being part of a team is about.

If Davis really had a change of heart, and wants to be part of the team, he needs to step up and redeem himself in the eyes of his “teammates.”

The post race press conference yesterday and the NBC interview today would have been a perfect opportunity to do that.

He CHOSE not to participate in the team pursuit. He CHOSE to bring up the conflict at the press conference. He CHOSE not to participate in an interview with NBC. He had the free will to make those choices.

To continue to put forth the negative attitude and behavior he has exhibited in Turin, it is obvious to many that his CHOICES are not reflecting positively on him.

As I have stated before. He just doesn’t get it. His supporters just don’t get it. I guess they never will.


Anonymous said...

just keep saying "davis' supporters don't get it" and you don't get it either - despite the fact that an overwhelming number of readers do. the reason you don't "get it" is that you are blinded by your "chad goggles" and cannot see anything in front of you except for the glory of "chad, chad, chad". i do not dislike chad, nor do i consider myself a "davis supporter" except for the fact that i support ALL of our teams. the time for crying over the team pursuit is way over. chad does not need shani to make him look immature and spoiled, he does a great job of that on his own. i understand you are a "texas" publication but until you drop the bias and start telling the truth, your blogs will continue to appear one-sided and unprofessional.

Speed Skating Fan from Minnesota said...

Yes, the author of this blog does get it, and so do I and many others. Davis has done nothing to embrace his teammates, the USA team, or the Olympics. He is there for one, or rather two people,…himself and his mother.

As far as the author telling the truth, he is right on the mark.

Davis just wants to stir up trouble and do it his and his mother’s way. Others are and have seen the trouble he, his mother, and his supporters are.

If you check other speed skaters comments, isn’t it amazing that none of them are coming to his defense, and some on the USA team have actually agreed with Hedrick and other’s opinion of Davis.

Are you aware that his mother was kicked out of a press conference earlier during the Olympics for disrupting the conference?

In fact, she showed up at the post race press conference with members of the Dutch Curling team, dressed in the same get-up at the Dutch team, with the expressed desire to harass Hedrick.

They (the Dutch Curling Team) were actually in attendance in the 1500 meter race and were actively cheering against Hedrick. Add to that the fact the Davis' only sponsor is a Dutch Bank, and it doesn't take a smart person to figure out what is and was going on.

I think YOU need to learn the facts before you open your mouth and put your thoughts on paper. You have the right to express them, as any person has on any blog, but don't think you can hide from criticize coming back on you.
The one good think about Davis winning the silver medal is that we will not have to look at his smug attitude on television. That was his last race. Now he can go back to Chicago, Canada, or the Netherlands and be happy to be around his supporters, as misguided and mislead as they are.

Anonymous said...

excuse me... it was the Dutch Curling Team that was kicked out of the press conference, not Shani's mother.