‘Hardball will own 2006’

In his predictions for 2006, Jon Friedman said that MSNBC had the energy and the momentum–which struck us as a bit odd. Here’s what one reader says in response:

David Shuster‘s reporting on the Jack Abramoff scandal has been extensive and brilliant. Again tonight, I clocked his daily Hardball/MSNBC report at over 4 minutes… a length unheard of in daily broadcast reporting,and twice as long as we’ve ever been given for a politics story here at the Disney network.

With Abramoff, the CIA leak trials, and etc. keeping a talented and veteran scandal reporter so busy… and with Chris Matthews consistent and unrivaled passion, Hardball will own 2006. It won’t be a question of whether they bury CNN’s conventional wisdom reporting, Matthews has already started doing that….

It will be a question of how close team Hardball can get to Fox. Just look at the trends: Hardball’s rise in ’05 matched the rise of the CIA leak scandal, a story Matthews owned. Between Patrick Fitzgerald and the DOJ/Abramoff task force, MSNBC has some rocket packets that will fuel them this year… Just watch.

So how about it: Will 2006 be the year of the NBC News Network?