💗 I Love You All

A farewell from the founder and reliving the incredible journey...

Written By: Danny Healey

👋 A Founder Farewell

“Morning Blitz”… some call it the two greatest words in sports. I like to call it, “the greatest five years of my entire life.” I started the Blitz with the concept of having short-form bullets to quickly get points across because I hated reading, but there is too much emotion packed up into this note to keep it short. For those who don’t care, here’s your daily headline bullet:

  • Morning Blitz co-founder Danny Healey (me) has accepted a full-time job with Shadow Lion, Tom Brady’s creative studio, leading content & partnerships strategy across the network of original shows. Danny will be writing his final Blitz newsletter for Friday (tomorrow) and is handing off operations of the newsletter to the TorchPro team (Blitz will continue Monday morning) – here is my LinkedIn post regarding Shadow Lion and my new role. Also, I am starting a personal blog highlighting my journey in sports media / start-ups that you can subscribe to here to stay in touch, connect and hopefully learn from!

I’m the dude in the middle, this my wonderful squad from TorchPro at the Lake Tahoe Celeb Golf tourney

The full story of Morning Blitz

Many of you reading the Blitz every day may not have any idea who I am, but I am a 27-year-old from Boston, MA that became obsessed with sports at a young age and decided to throw my love into an easy-to-read newsletter for you all to wake up with instead of combing through the internet / TV to find your sports updates.

The story starts at Colgate University where I was a senior on the lacrosse team in 2019. I had a job lined up in NYC working in the insurance industry following my graduation, so I had some extra time on hands. That senior year I joined the campus radio station for the Spring semester for an hour-long window on Wednesday nights hosting a sports debate show with my lax buddy Matt Donovan. Matt and I had a blast with the show and actually took the preparation very seriously to be able to put on a good show together for the grand total of 13 people that were listening.

One of my best friends from high school, Austin Smith, was a few years older than me working in finance reading daily newsletters related to his industry (now attending Yale still pursuing entrepreneurial ventures). He approached me with the idea of starting a daily newsletter for sports as there was not a true dominant player back in 2019. So, I said, “F*** it, let’s try.”

We came up with the name “Morning Blitz”, found the domain on GoDaddy for $1,200, Googled newsletter distribution services and we were off to the races. I thought the Blitz would be a “spring fling” type of project where you give it the ‘ole college try, but she quickly turned into the love of my life.

The first few months of the newsletter were absolutely horrendous looking and had about 26 grammar errors per issue. Somehow the “SportsCenter in an email” project was gaining traction amongst our family and friends. It took us about five months to hit 1,000 readers, but when that day hit, we were over the moon. Still $1,200 in the hole from the domain but who the hell cares!

I went to work my job in insurance and that lasted six months. I would sprint home from my cubicle every day exactly at 4:59pm so excited to start the writing process of the Blitz and stay up into the until 1:00am to finish writing. Because of that, I quickly realized I needed to work in sports, or I’d never be happy. Sports media truly inspired me to work my ass off. I networked my way into ESPN and landed a job in sports marketing. SportsCenter TV host David Lloyd went to Colgate, and I somehow got him to sign up for the Blitz. He said he read the newsletter before his shows to stay informed, pretty cool. He got me an interview at ESPN and BANG, I was in the door at the Worldwide Leader in Sports.

My first day at ESPN in 2019 (left)

Working at ESPN was awesome, but not the dream job I had imagined. The corporate lifestyle wasn’t for me, and I was still extremely passionate about the Blitz writing it at night while trying to grow our email list. Exactly 365 days into my career at ESPN, I handed in my two weeks and did everything I could figure out how to go full-time with Morning Blitz.

My most proud aspect of Morning Blitz over the years was never missing a single weekday (besides holidays) of sending the newsletter out since our first issue in April of 2019. The ONLY reason this was possible in the first three years was due to Noah Cartwright, my co-founder and Colgate lacrosse teammate. He was the most integral part of this entire operation, and it wasn’t even close. He was the smartest kid I knew on our team, and he dedicated himself to the Blitz while working a full-time 15-hour day job in Investment Banking amongst other responsibilities. He is the definition of “sleep when you’re dead” mentality and the biggest grinder of a human I have ever met. Noah deserves his flowers and so much more for the Blitz’s success. Love you.

Noah Cartwright (left) and I ripping a Celtics playoff game in 2022

The squad of interns – man, what an absolute wrecking crew. These savages would help get the newsletter written and sent on night’s I couldn’t refuse a post-work happy hour cocktail. Looking back on it, maybe the reason we had 25+ grammar errors in the early days of Blitz was due to the fact a drunk man was editing the newsletter at 3am. That’s neither here, nor there. Point being, without these interns the Morning Blitz would have folded. They provided energy and passion to the Blitz like you couldn’t imagine. It was the most fun group text I have ever been a part of, and we continue to mess around in there today. @Rebain - you are my favorite, don’t tell the other guys. Let’s all have a Tequilla Tuesday very soon.

The fellas having a virtual Tequilla Tuesday 🫡

Back to the story. After leaving ESPN, another one of my best friends from HS who also helped with the early days of Morning Blitz, Tommy Vailas, works for a venture capital firm in New Hampshire (no, it’s not Owen Wilson). He connected me with his CEO Kyle York, who had been an investor in a sports media start-up called Kompany39.

3.5 years ago, we merged Morning Blitz with Kompany39, and I got the perfect opportunity to start doing the Blitz in a full-time fashion. Kompany39 was founded by Matt Fornataro and NHL All-Star Joe Pavelski, and we renamed the parent company to “TorchPro”. I sat as Head of Content with many responsibilities beyond just operating Morning Blitz focused on content strategy across our video series and podcasts with pro athletes, hosting my own podcast, partnership sales with brands, social media management and lots more. I absolutely loved every second of my time with Torch and grew so much as a human. For more on my personal role and journey with TorchPro, here’s my recent LinkedIn post reflecting on the incredible experience.

The Blitz also grew as a brand under TorchPro. Our audience size became 50x across channels, pro athletes were reading and promoting the product and we made a legitimate name for ourselves in a crowded sports media space. Ian Dardani, who I have spoken highly of recently, was a massive part of that improvement being our solo dolo writer for the past two years. He’s so damn talented the NBA decided to hire him. We accomplished so much as a team, and I really could not be prouder about the progress we have made.

I cannot emphasize enough how much all of you opening this letter everyday has meant to me. Seeing tens of thousands of people engaging with the content on a daily basis is really special. You have made this a tight-knit community. My favorite Blitzers are the ones that respond to our daily emails pointing out my grammar mistakes, you guys are awesome. See how many you find in this entire note, my O/U is at 4.5.

With all that being said, this is a NOT a note saying the Blitz is over or is coming to an end. The Blitz operations will remain with TorchPro as I begin my new gig at Shadow Lion. This note is meant to reflect on my time building the product as I will no longer be involved in the daily creation of the content. I will forever cheer for the Blitz to win. It’s my baby, I may even get my first tattoo (100% guaranteed I get a text from my concerned mother after this). It’s just a goodbye from the founder for now, but Blitz to the god damn moon!

On Monday morning, you will continue to receive the newsletter.  Stay tuned to tomorrow’s letter for more details on what to expect going forward, exciting news in terms of the content itself. TorchPro will have the continued vision of creating the best daily sports newsletter in the world!

For those Blitzers out there who have followed my personal social media or followed Morning Blitz on IG, you know we’ve had some fun over the years at sporting events, good times with athletes, viral podcast episodes and a lot more. Here are some of my favorite moments:

  • Going on IG Live with Dana White for the Patriots draft pick every year during the NFL Draft and then him inviting us to Vegas to interview him for my podcast at UFC HQthis clip has garnered over 1 billion views and is still seen everywhere on social media

  • Interviewing Patrick Mahomes, Travis Kelce, Pat McAfee, Steph Curry and so many more legends on the golf course at the Lake Tahoe celeb golf tourney was exhilarating

  • I could go on, but I’ll shut up now

The Blitz is truly my first love. Without you opening the newsletter every day, there is no Morning Blitz, and I have no career in sports media, so for that, I thank you.

Much Love,

Danny Healey

P.S. I will be starting a personal blog highlighting stories, lessons, hot takes and more from my life working in sports media, start-ups and beyond called “Danny’s Diary”. It will be sent out a couple times a month, random cadence. Come join the journey, we’ll have some fun!

Thank you!