Over the last five years, journalist Adam Vingan has put his his heart and soul into covering the Washington Capitals. On Wednesday, Vingan announced that will be leaving the Capitals beat on March 16.
After four seasons covering the Capitals, I'll soon be moving to Nashville to report on the Predators for @Tennessean. I start March 16.
— Adam Vingan (@AdamVingan) February 24, 2015
Vingan, hired by The Tennessean, will essentially replace the talented and respected Josh Cooper on the Nashville Predators’ beat. Cooper currently writes for Yahoo’s Puck Daddy. Vingan will be leaving behind his work for NHL.com, Washington Post Express, and NBC Washington.
While this is great news for Vingan, I am bummed. I consider Adam a good friend. I marvel at how he’s helped grow the Capitals community. He’s given me advice and helped me become a better writer and journalist.
There may be no better pun-maker in all the land.
For taking part in that fight, I'm wondering if Dane is having…Byers remorse.
— Adam Vingan (@AdamVingan) October 1, 2014
Vingan’s path to the top– and make no mistake about it, he’s at the figurative hockey journalism mountaintop– has been fun to watch, and I’ve seen it all. He and I started covering the Caps around the same time.
In 2010, while interning at SiriusXM, Vingan met Jack Anderson. The interns became close friends and quickly formed a bond over the Caps. They created a blog named Kings of Leonsis, a nod to the band Kings of Leon (who were super over during that time) and the Caps owner.
Their masthead made you chuckle, but their work was no joke. Anderson and Vingan earned attention in a cramped and competitive Caps blogosphere.
“It was hard to stand out,” Anderson said to me on Tuesday. “To be honest, I was never very good at marketing my work and making it unique, but Adam’s energy, creativity, and enthusiasm really helped put KOL over the top. He came up with the name and was able to get us linked to Puck Daddy early on.”
The duo’s hard work eventually led to bigger opportunities.
“KOL was an incredible springboard for both of us,” Anderson explained. “I realize blogs aren’t always viewed with a friendly eye by media types, but for us KOL served as the perfect platform to get our names out there. I was fortunate enough to do some work with TSN Radio, NHL Network Radio, and the Associated Press.”
After graduating from American University, Vingan decided to focus on turning his dream into a full-time job. While I kept the day job, Vingan took the more difficult path. He clawed his way up from the bottom of the local journalism ladder.
Vingan was first hired by SB Nation. As his following grew, he landed a job with NBC Washington and their Capital Games blog. Later, he was hired to the Washington Post Express. Last year, Vingan was hired by NHL.com, recapping Capitals games and writing features for the site.
Vingan’s also written for Sports Illustrated. You’ve heard him on the radio doing hits with 106.7 The Fan. You’ve seen his face in the scrum during video interviews with players.
“There wasn’t a day that went by where Adam wasn’t at Kettler or Verizon Center,” Anderson said. “He moved right next to the Ballston Mall in order to easily attend practice. He never gave up on his dream even when it appeared it would be tough to make much headway in a crowded DC media scene. Much of his coverage came at a cost. He did a lot of free labor and traveled on his own dime. I wasn’t able to keep that fire alive for covering the team, but he did and it is a testament to his work ethic and self-sacrifice.”
For college kids who dream of being a beat writer for a sports team, Vingan is someone to emulate. Adam earned his way into this job with hard work, dogged determination, and atrocious puns.
I’ll give Vingan’s close friend on the beat, The Washington Post’s Alex Prewitt, the last word:
I like keeping computer documents organized, and that involves making lots of folders. So, inside the “Pictures” folder on my work laptop, and the “Washington Post” and the “Capitals” sub-folders, sits one final frontier called “VINGAN SOON.” Right now, “VINGAN SOON” contains six pictures. They can be described as follows:
Adam Vingan looking over Braden Holtby’s right shoulder.
Adam Vingan looking over Jay Beagle’s left shoulder, while Jay Beagle wears a stovetop pipe hat and black fake beard.
Adam Vingan looking over Alex Ovechkin’s right shoulder.
A template.jpg file of Adam Vingan looking over something.
Photoshop of Adam Vingan looking up at Barry Trotz during a press conference.
Adam Vingan tweet of Barry Trotz looking at something, that I guess I meant to Photoshop but forgot.
By now we’ve established the overriding thesis, that Adam Vingan is, in several senses of the word, a looker, and since Alan May calls him “Skinny Jeans,” I hesitate not to draw this conclusion. He’s also a great dude, someone who helped out the new kid on the block at Kettler and Verizon, more than he knows. He’s become a close friend since I came onto the beat too, and I’m thrilled as all hell that he’s moving to Nashville, because he’s paid his dues and earned the chance. It’s a shame I’m never going to see him again, especially since the Predators and Capitals don’t play in exactly 29 days at Verizon Cent–wait. What? Ugh. Seriously? Well, nevermind.
I guess we’ll all be seeing Adam really…
— RMNB (@russianmachine) December 30, 2014
Congratulations, Adam. We will all be rooting for you– if not the team you cover.
Russian Machine Never Breaks is not associated with the Washington Capitals; Monumental Sports, the NHL, or its properties. Not even a little bit.
All original content on russianmachineneverbreaks.com is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)– unless otherwise stated or superseded by another license. You are free to share, copy, and remix this content so long as it is attributed, done for noncommercial purposes, and done so under a license similar to this one.