Y’all, I have some (sad?) news:
I will be stepping down as managing editor of At The Hive.
I have enjoyed my time running this site immensely and have made a plethora of lifelong friends doing so. It’s been an absolute pleasure watching the site grow from fringe blog to go-to Hornets site—something that couldn’t have happened without y’all, by the way—but feel it’s time to give the site a new voice.
Man, I’ve been here for a while. Just under eight years total, three as managing editor. That’s roughly a third of my life, so needless to say At The Hive and SB Nation played a tremendous role in the person I’ve become today. With management’s guidance and your passion I developed not only as a writer and basketball fan, but as a man, too. Thank you.
My introduction to the SB Nation family came in 2011, when Ben Swanson, my friend and former boss, sent me a direct message on Twitter telling me he’d been offered the managing editor position at Rufus on Fire. He planned to accept but wanted to bring a few people with him to ensure he didn’t blow up the entire house while changing a screw. I believe he initially settled on Connor Huchton and myself before adding Dakota Schmidt, Seerat Sohi, and Chris Barnewall, all of whom have moved onto much bigger and better things.
Little did I know that my first season covering the Charlotte Bobcats would’ve been their 7-59, worst-in-league-history season. Ben told me he was worried I’d never become a fan of the team if this is what they were going to be—and I’ll be honest, it was hard at times—but I did end up getting hooked. However, what hooked me initially wasn’t the team itself but the community David Arnott and Ben had cultivated at Rufus on Fire.
I didn’t know there were professional basketball fans in the Carolinas. Like most fans, Charlotte was a bit of an afterthought back then.
But y’all drew me in. You showered me with love and were extremely patient as I got up to speed on the franchise and its storied history. There were some trolls—hi, focus—but all of y’all added your own touch to the site and I cannot thank you enough. Without you, our readers, this machine doesn’t move. This place is a reflection of you as much as it is us.
I ended up falling in love with that awful Bobcats squad, by the way. I’d always fancied myself as a bit of a contrarian and took immense pride in defending Bismack Biyombo from unfounded accusations and, sometimes, explicitly racist rhetoric. Byron Mullens was not an NBA player, but he was an NBA player to us and I made sure the world knew about each and every play he tried to make. Gerald Henderson personified the team’s stagnant past and sent me down deep philosophical rabbit holes about tradition versus progressivism. To think Kemba Walker’s infectious smile and slick ball-handling were the cherry on top back then.
Man. Things changed quickly, though.
Ben soon graduated with a journalism degree and was offered a job that required him to give up the site. He offered his role to me. I was taken aback because not only did I not have much experience running a site, but I lived in Toronto, hundreds of miles from Charlotte. I wasn’t sure it was going to work, but figured I’d entertain it and pass it off if it were not feasible.
Well, it worked. We reworked the roster, re-branded with the rest of the SB Nation network and saw the site grow to new heights year after year. It was an absolute pleasure watching the site explode with activity and once again I cannot thank y’all enough for your role in that.
Now, however, I’m 28 years old and just got my own journalism degree. I entertained the idea of moving to Charlotte upon graduating but life threw some curves and it looks like I’ll be staying put for a while. I subsequently feel it’s time to give the site a new voice—perhaps a local one—and a new vision.
I am extremely thankful for everyone who’s ever contributed to our site in any way and assure you that not a single one of you have gone unnoticed. I may stick to the shadows but I’m always watching. I thought about listing out everyone I’d like to thank but no, that list would be much too long.
So, what’s next?
I’ll be sticking around for a bit while SB Nation conducts a search for my replacement. The position is open to anyone so I implore you to apply if you fancy yourself a decent writer and passionate Hornets fan. Once a new managing editor is hired I’ll slip into the shadows—the comment section—and maybe offer a piece here and there to whomever is taking over.
By and large, though, you’ll see me most on Twitter. It’ll still be a lot of basketball, but there’ll be politics, science, and general life stuff there too. Oh, and tons of self-deprecating snark and pessimism.