FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 27, 2017
(Bismarck, ND) – Another North Dakota Capitol Classic is in the books.
Elected officials, lobbyists and members of the press corps joined volunteers for the 2017 North Dakota Capitol Classic, a charitable event in support of North Dakota Special Olympics, today in Memorial Hall. Teams of five competed head-to-head in a tournament of arcade basketball. On the line: commemorative t-shirts and bragging rights for the next two years.
The 2017 Capitol Classic concluded with returning champions, Lobbyist Team No. 1, defeating House Republicans.
The real action, however, was lower in the bracket.
“We have to beat the Dems; everyone else has,” said Associated Press reporter James MacPherson, shortly before his team was routed by House Democrats. House Democrats handed the Media their second of three losses in the afternoon, with a score of 248-218.
“You’ve got to hand it to them, the North Dakota media team played with a lot of heart,” said Rep. Marvin Nelson. “That and $3.00 will get you a cup of coffee in the cafeteria downstairs.”
The match was viewed as a battle for redemption by both teams. Members of the House Democratic-NPL team consisted of Rep. Gretchen Dobervich (D-11); Rep. Joshua Boschee (D-44); Rep. Marvin Nelson (D-9); House Minority Leader, Rep. Corey Mock (D-18); and substitute Daniel Tick, the caucus communications director. Media team members included Max Grossfeld (KFYR-TV); Nick Smith (Bismarck Tribune); John Hageman (Forum News Service); Malique Rankin (KX News); and Emily Medalen (KX News). The media team was coached by Associated Press reporter James MacPherson.
“I was a little surprised to see a team of reputable journalists – known for their integrity and ethics – resort to cheap shots on the court,” said Rep. Mock. “Their tactics reeked of desperation, clearly not wanting to lose to the Super Minority.”
“It was a hard-fought round, and we left everything on the basketball court,” said Rep. Dobervich, as she extended an olive branch following the match. “We’ll continue to feed our friends in the media important stories from the capitol, even if they don’t know how to feed their teammates the ball.”
Bloggers around the capitol later reported that not all members of the media team were discouraged following their defeat.
“I truly thought I could ball,” said Max Grossfeld. “Turns out, I can’t. I guess I’ll stick to my day job reporting the fake news.”
At press time, Forum political reporter John Hageman was seen shopping for Air Jordans in downtown Bismarck, asking the sales associate if she thinks these shoes would “give me better ups.” The sales associate declined to comment.
“They never print my press releases, anyway,” complained Daniel Tick, the Democratic-NPL communications director, when asked if news of the Capitol Classic would be accurately reported following the media’s crushing defeat.
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