Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Why Jimmie Johnson's surgery is news

Amy K. Marbach/Flickr
Six-time Nascar champion Jimmie Johnson revealed on Sunday that he underwent offseason surgery to repair three non-sports related hernias, a procedure that he acknowledged affected his preparation for the 2014 season.

New information on a popular public figure? By any measure -- in just about any newsroom in the country -- that would qualify as news. And yet, on Monday there was some dispute among fans, Johnson and even a few members of the media as to whether it should have been viewed that way.

Here's what Johnson told the media after he won the Sprint Cup race at Dover on Sunday: "I didn't realize it was one, a secret, or two, public information. Have you had any surgeries lately? Is there any procedures -- when did you have your teeth cleaned?"

To which I would answer ...