This is my last post as the editor of Predlines.
I first came on board here in December 2012 after FanSided’s NHL Network director, Derek Stykalo, recruited me to run the site. I hadn’t written about hockey with any regularity since I closed my old blog, Predators’ Den, which I had begun during the 2003-04 season with my late, great friend Charlie Tuttle. Very few people on the internet were paying attention to the scrappy expansion team in Nashville in those days. That was back when James Mirtle didn’t yet work for the Globe and Mail, Jes Golbez was the funniest guy in hockey blogging, and the occasional link from Eric McErlain’s Off Wing Opinion or PJ Swenson‘s Sharkspage meant the world to two kids from Tennessee. There hadn’t been an NHL lockout yet, much less two of them. It was an entirely different hockey world than the one we know today.
Despite all my time away from writing about the game, Derek wanted me on the FanSided team. So I agreed to take the job.
At the time the latest lockout was at its lowest point and nobody knew if the league and players would come to an agreement in time to avert disaster. In all honesty, I expected there wouldn’t be any hockey to watch. But by early January the buzz of a possible deal began to build, and within a few weeks I had an actual hockey season to keep up with. More than 300 posts later, it’s almost hard to believe that the NHL came within weeks of not having a season at all. Almost.
Though the team struggled this season, covering it was enjoyable. I’ve always been free to write whatever sort of content I wanted here at Predlines, from whatever angle seemed best to me. That’s the kind of freedom any writer loves to have. And when it came to pitching ideas for less traditional content – like Bob Sham’s Shea comics – the network was always behind me. It would be gauche to ask for anything more.
Interacting with you has been enjoyable for me, too. Social media the way we know it today didn’t exist back when I wrote about hockey the first time around, so this experience was very different than that one. Those of you on Twitter made live-tweeting Preds games a lot of fun, even if they usually didn’t go the way we all had hoped. Having a few of the team’s players tweet back at me along the way was fun, too.
I’ll no longer be the editor here at Predlines but I will be staying on as a contributing author. I won’t be publishing here often but whenever I have something I really want to say about the Preds, this will be my venue. Like all of you, I’m looking forward to a more successful future for the team.
To the FanSided NHL team: thanks for allowing me to join you in an editorial capacity. It’s been a pleasure to work with all of you.
To the readers: thanks for your time and attention. Seeing so many of you read what I’ve written has been a humbling experience. I’m grateful to have had the opportunity.
– Jason Kirk