This is the last post I will write for Stanley Cup of Chowder. I am officially hanging up my blogging skates.
I would like to say that I planned it out like Mark Recchi to go out on top and call it quits after writing the story I always wanted to write (the Bruins winning the Stanley Cup, of course), but this was a decision that I made several months ago.
Adam Carolla often poses the question "Does it make you money or does it make you happy?". This was a question that I asked myself over and over again when I was contemplating making the difficult decision to step away from the site that I created and invested three years of my life to. This season, running the site became more of a grind for me. I found myself spending almost all of my free time working on the site. Something that I started as hobby started to feel like a second full-time job (without much of a financial return). While the positive feedback from my loyal readers did make me happy and the stipend I earned for writing did put some extra cash in my pocket, I felt like the amount of time I spent working on the site was starting to affect other parts of my life. At the end of the day, it was not making me very much money or making me happy. I love hockey and I love to write. I do not ever want to lose my passion for either, so I am taking a step back so I can become a fan of both again.
When I first started this site, I had just finished up with grad school and was looking for a way to pass the time in between sending out resumes and sleeping until noon. I didn't think anyone would read my stuff besides maybe a few friends, but somehow it took off. This site has provided me with some great experiences and opportunities. Back then, I never would have dreamed that I would wind up in the press box at the NHL Winter Classic, get to write a guest post for the New York Times website, or get to skate on the ice at Fenway Park. Those things are a long way from live blogging Olympic racewalking from my parent's couch at 2:00 AM.
This site would have never become what it is today, without the help of some great people:
My Loyal Readers: This site would be nothing without our readers. You are the best. You challenge me, you make me think, and most importantly, you make me laugh. You guys got me through the grind of a long season.
My Co-Writers: I cannot thank Phil (Phunwin) and Tim (timmorrison23) enough for all the help they have given me. Phil, you stepped up big time this season. I was reluctant to add a new writer and it worked out incredibly well. I could not have done it this year without you. Timmy, you are the best emergency call-up in the blogging game. You always come through when I need you.
Greg Wyshynski from Yahoo! Puck Daddy: If you didn't stumble upon my poorly-written rant against the NHL's decision to award a Winter Classic to Chicago, who knows where Stanley Cup of Chowder would have ended up. Puck Daddy continues to be a major traffic driver for this site.
Toucher & Rich: I don't care who SB Nation is business partners with. You guys are the most talented people in Boston radio. You have supported this site and the Bruins from the very beginning. I owe a lot of the success of this site to you. It was great meeting you guys before the Winter Classic. I know my interview was not the best 5 minutes in radio history, but I had to have been better than Pat Man and Andrew Alberts.
James Mirtle, Tyler Bleszinski, and JP from Japers' Rink: Thank you for giving me the opportunity to join SB Nation and reach a larger audience.
James Murphy: Thanks for helping me out in the early days and providing content for the site...even if it almost ruined your career. It was great hanging out with you at the Winter Classic.
Bruins beat writers and fellow Bruins bloggers: There are a lot of talented people writing about and covering the Bruins right now. Thanks to those of you who have help spread the word of Stanley Cup of Chowder: Joe Haggerty of CSNNE, Mike Giardi or CSNNE, Matt Kalman of The Bruins Blog, DJ Bean of WEEI, Mike Petraglia of WEEI, Mark Marino of The Hub of Hockey, Days of Y'Orr, Something's Bruin, Amanda Bruno of The Springfield Republican, Cornelius Hardenbergh, Hub Hockey, Mass Hysteria, and probably a bunch of others that I forgot.
Everyone that let me write a guest post: NBC Sports Pro Hockey Talk, The New York Times Slap Shot Blog, Cycle Like The Sedins, NESN, etc.
SB Nation Hockey Crew: The talent and dedication of this group is incredible. Keep up the great work! I'll keep reading.
My friends and family: Thank you for voting for me in meaningless blog contests and listening to me ramble on about the Bruins and my stupid blog. I have neglected you all lately and I can't wait to spend more time with you.
I'm sure I forgot someone. If I forgot you, just consider yourself part of the friends and family category.
So, now what?
Fear not, Chowdah Heads. The site is in good hands. Ryan Durling is taking over as site manager. You may know Ryan from his work on SB Nation Boston, Something's Bruin, and Sieves The Day. I think Ryan is going to do a fantastic job and take the site to a whole new level. He will be posting a welcome message later today to introduce himself to all of you and map out his plans for the site.
Once again, I just want to thank all of the readers. We have formed a great community here over the last three years and I hope everyone sticks around to see what Ryan has in store for the site.
It's been a great ride, but it's time to step away.