Ask a designer what's best practice for content design on the Web, and chances are that the NY Times may come up as a common answer. I'm a fan of the NY Times too—have been since I worked on the Chicago Tribune's site back in '97. But I think a lot can be learned from the approach UX Magazine takes in how they've looked at designing content. Where you can see that the NY Times makes a nod to the print paradigm (headlines, columns, snippets)—UX starts fresh and uses a grid like hierarchy to organize information combined with bold visual cues.
Granted this is not a fair comparison. The NY Times has much more content to handle and does an amazing job of organizing it. And you can see how the Times has influenced other news/content sites. But there's just something about UX that stands out. It got my attention.