Sometimes it doesn’t matter what players do or say, they are damned if they do, and damned if they don’t.
For many years now it has been made quite clear that Darius Boyd does not want to talk to the media. For what ever reason, Boyd has made the decision that he does not want to answer questions posed to him by journalists.
Darius Boyd is completely entitled to make that decision. If Darius Boyd does not want to talk to the media no one should force him to. Australia is a free country. No one should be forced to say anything they don’t want to.
After a night of celebrating winning State Of Origin three, Darius Boyd was confronted by a reporter as he left the team hotel and packed his bags into a car…probably to head off to the nearest airport. This wasn’t a planned press conference, this wasn’t a team event, this was a footy player who was as “off the clock” as you are likely to get during the day who just wanted to get himself back home.
This is what happened…
Could Boyd have handled himself a bit better? Probably. Did he do anything wrong? Not really. If that is all Darius Boyd wanted to say, who are you or I to tell him we want any more or less from him?
By not talking to the media Boyd has made the decision to become a less marketable player. This likely costs him sponsorship money. Obviously it is a decision he is comfortable with.
On Wednesday night Boyd scored a try for Queensland and earned $30,000 for playing a game of football. It is very hard to argue that Darius Boyd has made the wrong decision when it clearly hasn’t effected his selection at representative level and it hasn’t made all that big of an impact on his earning capacity.
The obvious argument is that Boyd, as a high profile player, should be talking to the media in an effort to promote the game. The media pays the bills, and if every player stops talking to the media the money will very quickly dry up.
That argument is bullshit.
The media buys into Rugby League because they want eyeballs. As long as you and I keep watching games of football the media will keep paying for Rugby League content.
How many games how you decided you were not going to watch because you haven’t heard from Darius Boyd during the week?
We don’t live in a black and white world where every player is all of a sudden not going to talk to the media. Some players love talking to the media. Others hate it. Some tolerate it. Some get their heads on TV at every opportunity when quite honestly they shouldn’t!
We will never get to a point where every player decides to shun the media completely as Darius Boyd has. For every Darius Boyd there is a Daly Cherry-Evan, who is one of the true professionals of the game when it comes to his media commitments.
By not talking to the media Darius Boyd doesn’t hurt the game at all. He hurts his own earning capacity, but if he is OK with that…so am I.