New York ‘Times’ Sports Magazine ‘Play’ Is Dead at Age Two

Photo: istockphoto (grave)

Play, the New York Times quarterly sports magazine, died yesterday at the age of two. It is survived by its freelance editor, Mark Bryant, who is looking for a job; editor Bill Brink, who will be reassigned within the paper; and a host of freelancers. Play was born in Logan airport in 2006 to New York Times Magazine editor Gerry Mazaroti, who was waiting for a delayed flight, as one often is at Logan. Like the athletes it covered, Play led an active life, with marquee writers like David Foster Wallace and Michael Lewis regularly crowding into its salon. But, all along, it was quietly engaged in a long battle with solvency, which was compounded by the recent economy. Despite a massive Olympics ad buy from Nielsen last year, the magazine, having lost hundreds of thousands of dollars, finally succumbed to its illness. “There were no numbers that we could turn to to make it viable,” Mr. Mazaroti told the Observer. “Frankly, it breaks my heart.”

Times’ Gerry Marzorati on Play: No Options to ‘Make it Viable’ [NYO]