I often cringe when I listen to Pittsburgh people talk about sports. I cringe even more when I hear simpletons say that they can’t stand Mark Madden. Those same dopes that bash him listen daily. Madden doesn’t sacrifice credibility. The same can’t be said for the rest of the Pittsburgh media. We can save that for another day because this column isn’t about those peasants. This is about why Madden is the king of the Pittsburgh media and has been for almost two decades. DECADES.
Rival blogs will say that I’m sucking up to Mark for Mark to like me. Madden despises me. He sees me as a lowly blogger despite me writing an article about him when I worked for the Trib. I’ve played in his hockey tournaments and never felt like the guy even realized it was me who interviewed him. He just wanted my money and hey I understand that. Nothing wrong with that, life is a business to some people.
My entire journalism career was influenced by Madden. I picked up on his trademark styles verbally for years. As entertaining as he was verbally, it was his writing, that I admired the most. Still to this day, he is a great read. I worked for Trib Total Media for over 5 years and I also worked for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. I pitched the Post-Gazette to bring back Madden. I had a face to face with the higher ups and spoke about how they needed Madden in order to be saved. They didn’t listen. The Post-Gazette sucks. I’ve been published in it. It was always my dream. It doesn’t mean as much as it used to.
Mark knows he’s the best in Pittsburgh. I often wonder why he doesn’t just do his own thing. He doesn’t need FM radio now with the internet. He could have a nationally syndicated show. I’ve lived all over the country and this past year I’ve been all over. I literally am in a different city once a month. I’ve heard so many shows. Madden is right there with guys like Artie Lange and Howard Stern. I really consider those 3 the best and I only give the edge to Stern because Stern is nationally syndicated and I don’t think Mark would argue.
But Mark could perhaps join Stern. The sad thing is Madden is from Pittsburgh and I’m sure he realizes this is the last area that hangs on to FM radio. He likes being regionally well known and maybe he is a genius because why leave so many years of hard work to take a chance? That’s smart. But Madden has the talent to be nationally known. A true celebrity.
When it comes to sports, Madden never sacrifices his credibility. He is elite in interviews. Stern interviews the highest profile celebrities. Madden deserves the chance to interview A list celebrities. Wrestling bores me, but Madden interviewing professional wrestlers is first class. I actually listen to the full interviews. They never are dull. I credit Mark for what he has accomplished in Pittsburgh. It’s not easy being a king. Heavy lies the crown.
Former Pittsburgh Steeler Josh Miller should thank Mark for it was Madden that interviewed Miller in a memorable interview in which Miller revealed the difference of playing for the Titans and Patriots. If you want to have an enjoyable day, go back to the archives of the PG in the early 2000’s and read his columns. His Steeler columns were laugh out loud funny. Madden is simply the best columnist in Pittsburgh.
Do you agree that Madden is the best sports columnist in Pittsburgh?