January 6, 2018 11:00 am

Story on faked ESPN site claims supplement gives LA Kings’ Drew Doughty near-magic powers

This fake story is a thinly disguised sales pitch for a dietary supplement.

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LA Kings defenceman Drew Doughty has taken some hits on the ice in the last year or so.

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Oilers left winger Patrick Maroon got a two-game suspension this week for an illegal check against Doughty, which followed another two-game suspension for the Calgary Flames’ Matthew Tkachuk for an elbow to Doughty’s jaw last March. Doughty also has a history of concussions

So hockey, a rough game, hasn’t been gentle with Doughty. But neither has a shameless fake news scam involving a forged version of the ESPN site, claiming that Doughty “is under investigation by the NHL.”

“The real reason will surprise you,” the fake ESPN site claimed. But the real reason didn’t surprise us at all because we documented the same scam back in October when it targeted Sidney Crosby.

The Doughty story has the same structure: 1) An NHL player is in trouble with the league. Why? 2) Because he takes a supplement called Alpha Force Testo, which gives him near-magical powers, which is unfair to other players; 3) Fake-ESPN tries out Alpha Force Testo, in a spirit of journalistic rigour, being careful to say they were once skeptics themselves, this being a familiar device. 4) Will not surprise you in the least: the reporter experiences a complete body makeover in four weeks with no effort at all. “Actually, everyone at ESPN is kicking themselves for not having volunteered to be the guinea pig.”

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Losing weight and getting fitter normally involves some level of effort and self-denial. (“The reason why most [diets] fail, in our opinion, is that they impose unrealistic restrictions on how you live your life.”) But Alpha Force Testo burns fat and builds muscle with no effort at all, other than remembering to ingest the product.

How does it accomplish this? Well, magic, more or less, as far as we can tell. What’s in it? They’re a bit vague about that, other than saying that “the powerful ingredients spread throughout your body, optimizing your levels of free testosterone.”

And how did we find out about this? Because ads linking to one version or another of the story keep cropping up on our site (see below). We block them as we see them, but it’s a cumbersome, whack-a-mole kind of process. If you see another, please screenshot and let me know.

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WATCH: The White House is trying to block the release of a salacious new book that offers an unflattering glimpse of the chaos in the Trump presidency. Jackson Proskow reports.

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