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Diane's Shoddy Work: Who Will Hold Her Accountable?

I didn’t feel like writing this post last night. But after thinking about it a little more, I had to bring this up. Pucin has emerged as a serious problem for UCLA hoops. And we need to start thinking about how we can hold her accountable, or hold the folks who are supposed to keep an eye on her accountable, for her pattern of shoddy journalism.

Once again, it looks like Diane wrote a report on Bruin hoops which didn’t tell us the whole (accurate) story. As MIMBruin first noted, Pucin wrote up a UCLA report in which it appeared as if AA was calling out DC:

He had some shots roll in and out," Afflalo said of Collison. "But as a point guard he has to control the ball and handle what everybody else is doing. He can not and should not worry about his own opportunities."

Afflalo didn't limit his stern words to Collison.
If the LA Times was the only game in town in terms of coverage of UCLA basketball, just by reading those grafs, a reasonable person would probably be led to the conclusion that AA was calling out his All Pac-10 point guard after the last game of season. The grafs could also give someone the impression (someone who forms his or her opinion just by reading the LAT sports section) that perhaps there may be some "chemistry" issues involving the Pac-10 champions.

Luckily, in today’s world there is lot more than the LAT shoddy sports coverage. Because of the internets we can also get a sense of what is really going on by taking a look what other UCLA beat writers like Dohn had to say about the situation. As pointed out by rfirpo in the diaries, after reading Dohn’s report that put AA’s comments on DC in context, it sounds clearly like AA was protecting (not calling out) his starting pg:
"You can't talk about anybody's shooting percentages because everybody has their night," UCLA guard Arron Afflalo said. "As a point guard, he's going to have to understand that he has to control both. A lot of our victories come because of him.

"He has a lot of pressure of handling what everybody does on the team, so he has to do the best he can and not get caught up in his own percentages, and make sure everybody else has it going. That's the point guard's duty."
Now that gives us an entirely different picture. Doesn’t it?

Obviously, I am going to go by the report of a writer who has an established reputation of being the most thorough, knowledgeable, and diligent sports writer, among the legion of Bruin sports fan. And that’s not Diane.

This is not the first time this season that Diane has filed a report which looks like an ignorant, lazy, sloppy or uninformed piece of work, or seems to have some other anti-UCLA agenda behind them:
  • Confusing (or Misreporting) booing w/ people cheering Luuuuc: Earlier in the season Diane filed a report in which she suggested after Bruins game against Oakland, that she heard "few grumpy boos" at Pauley even though many of the folks who were at that game said they didn’t hear any boos and only thing that remotely sounded like boos were crowd reaction to Luuuuuuuuuuc’s baskets.

  • Attacking Bruins fans from ("message boards") without providing any evidence: Just few weeks ago Diane wrote a sympathy piece on Shipp, writing how "critics on internet message boards" were personally attacking Shipp for being "cocky" and smiling. Pucin didn’t provide a single reference or specific citation to back up her allegations. Instead, she just launched a broadside over Bruin fans online, who had the audacity to criticize and discuss Josh’s game (not his personality). Pucin then went on to add a quote from Shipp’s mom in which it appeared as if she was criticizing Howland’s offense. So what Pucin wrote on Sunday wasn’t really an isolated incident of shoddy reporting. It's not the first time she has written a report on UCLA that either looks uniformed or misleading.
Those are just two easy examples. I am sure we can find more on a so-called "beat reporter" who usually doesn't bother to file team reports on Mondays and Tuesdays, while her counterpart from cross-town files away reports what seems like every day of the week.

I know many of us here want to just ignore the LAT, get their information from online sources, and other papers, and just forget about it. That is fine. But the problem is that millions of pairs of eyes are still reading Diane’s shoddy reporting, and perhaps forming a totally uninformed and ignorant opinion on UCLA hoops. The question is, what should be done about it?

Should the UCLA Sports Information Director (SID) take a hard line and demand more accountability from Pucin’s bosses. I know the general reaction in the past has been to email Pucin and Randey Harvey, the editor of LA Times sports section. Perhaps the target should be the UCLA SID who should start calling out incompetent reporters like Pucin in public forums?

I am interested in hearing everyone’s thoughts on this. Diane's work is clearly becoming a problem for Bruin hoops. Ignoring her will not make the problem go away. My question is who else besides us needs to start calling her out for her shoddy work?