Changes At Rogers Sportsnet Fan 590

May 26th, 2015 | by torontosportsmedia
Changes At Rogers Sportsnet Fan 590
sports and toronto

by TSM

Multiple sources are telling me today that Rogers Fan 590 program director Don Kollins has taken a similar role with 95.7 The Game in San Fransisco, leaving the Fan without, for the time being without a Program Director. Staff of the station was informed of the news at an internal meeting earlier today. Word is that Kollins last day will be June 19.

More details later


  1. Bear32 says:

    Can he take Blundell & Rusic, otherwise known as the Morning Amateur Hour, with him?

  2. BS says:

    DK will not be missed and perhaps he saw the writing on the wall. Blundell is shedding advertisers; Walker and Brady (yes, that’s the order in which they should be listed) is not worth listening to; Bob’s lack of a credible co-host on PTS when Brunt is absent is glaring; and there is no one in the evenings worth listening to (I have not listened to the FAN after 7 pm in years). I think DK made a good deal for himself. The FAN is a mess and his successor will soon make changes.

  3. Antonio says:

    I wonder if this will mean the end to Blundell in the morning.

  4. Charlie Brown says:

    So does that mean some decisions would be rectified? They have an opportunity here to make some sweeping changes. Blair especially… Pinder did great again today. Dominoes…

  5. Ron M says:

    When he put Krystal in the morning and moved PTS to 3:00 and then repeated the first hour at 6:00, I was shaking my head and began the downward spiral in my listening to the Fan. I barely listen now. I am surprised TSN radio has not jumped at the chance to make some changes in their morning show.

  6. Matty Zero says:

    Well, that was a terrible run. Almost from day 1, every move has backfired. Krystal, Grange & Blair,moving PTS from 3-6, canning Hayhurst (my opinion only)were brutal moves. Adding Tim & Sid was a plus that turned negative.

    Sorry San Fran.

  7. Daniel says:

    Totally don’t understand the flak Don Kollins takes on this board.

    I think the Brady/Walker, Blair, Tim/Sid, McCown era was the best lineup the station has ever had. The station became way more listenable after he got there than it was before. And the ratings reflected that.

    Jury’s out on Blundell, but I suspect that had more to do with Sportsnet bigwigs wanting to put Tim/Sid on TV, and a hole opening up.

  8. Darrell says:

    Today might be May 26, but it is December 25’th to yours truly. I HATED Don Kollins’ decisions from day 1. Where do you begin? Dropping the overnight programs (Sammut/Rumack) for that CBS Overnight garbage (with Pencil in throat sounding Scott Farrell), Andrew Krystal, moving Tim + Sid off radio for nerd like voices Brady + Walker, bringing in Blundell, moving PTS to 3-6 PM, etc.

    Jeff Sammut and Norm Rumack were not the best voices, that’s true. However no matter what you think of them, they are a billion times better than Farrell.

  9. PBI says:

    His exit date is interesting, almost five years to the day since all those changes were made in 2010.

    The station’s doing good for the most part so I don’t expect his successor to do too much. I think we know the Blundell move came from someone above Kollins because he was a big fan of Brady in the mornings.

  10. IP3LEE says:

    Does this mean no more Ken Reid on PTS?

  11. FMW says:

    I thought he started really strong, Bringing in Brady, hottest free agents in Tim and Sid and having a smart baseball guy like Blair was all strong moves for a lineup that has been really stale before Kollins came in. Sure he missed with Krystal but he corrected that mistake pretty quick.

    But then bringing in guys like Walker and Blundell, just doesn’t really seem to fit in. Won’t even mention the Ken Reid debacle but I do wonder if that has more to do with McCown.

    Another disappointment in the Kollins era is he didn’t bring any new/fresh rookie voices to radio. The evening shirt used to have an amazing pool of young, hungry talent. Remember the 90s had Strombo, Merek, Bob Macko, Friedman, Jim Richards, Sansone and even E Smith. The guys now seem to be stuck in the same position and not doing anything to really stand out from the crowd.

    Another disappointment in the Kollins era is the complete lack of diversity. It seems like if you are not white and a man, there seems to be no place for you on air.

  12. Monty says:

    One can only hope this change means the end of Wilner!

  13. Neil says:

    I think Rogers Media is going to go through some massive changes. Some analyst suggest that Rogers media may be sold off to focus on more profitable divisions, High Speed internet/cable and wireless

  14. KK says:

    Overall, I think the daytime Fan shows are better now than before. The morning show isn’t ideal (please no more constant laughing and giggling) but okay for the most part. The biggest problem of the current era IMO was the fact that local late nights went away and were replaced with CBS radio (gone are the days when young talent would be developed in that time slot).

  15. Neil says:


    I totally agree with you on the diversity problem at the fan. In a time where employers are under scrutiny for a lack of diversity in the workplace it seems very odd.

  16. Mike S says:

    Here is my personal 590 report card for the Kollins Era…………some of these things probably weren’t totally under his control but I will list them anyway………… my opinion there was definitely more bad than good but some of the good things were really good


    – The hiring of Brady
    – The hiring of Tim & Sid
    – The hiring of Walker
    – The decision to change the existing morning show (Stellick & Landry) because it had gotten stale
    – Adding a co-host to the PTS 4 PM hour on Tuesdays to Thursdays


    – The hiring of Krystal
    – The Wilner suspension debacle
    – The hiring of Blundell
    – The Summer of Lumby in 2010
    – The shift of PTS to 3-6 PM
    – The failure to find a suitable PTS co-host for non-Brunt weeks
    – Decided not to have a co-host on Blair’s show
    – Never came on the air to explain any of his decisions or talk about the station
    – Switch to CBS Overnight programming to save money
    – Never improved the weeknight & weekend programming
    – Failure to keep Alan Ashby (might not have been possible)
    – Not keeping Dirk Hayhurst
    – Getting rid of people like Barb Digiulio, Howard Berger, and David Alter and never really replacing them

  17. Neil says:

    @ Mike S

    Suspending Wilner was a good thing, One would hope that Mike’s suspension has nothing to do with media censorship but a media company holding it’s journalist to a higher standard of professionalism.
    Mike had a personal vendetta against Cito, The most successful coach Toronto sports has seen regardless of the great team he had. Mike back then torched every single in game move Cito made, and one day arrogantly approached him during a scrim about decisions in a game. Cito two time championship coach was understandably dismissive just as Mike is with callers, As you can see Mike has no Journalistic integrity he’s bias, ignorant and is completely glass half full.

  18. mario says:

    Now let see if Bell 1050 react to this move do they just stand by or make major changes as well.I don’t see this as a negative for the Fan I still believe they will fine, people command go all the time.

  19. jamally says:

    In terms of ratings and the strength of the station, he did a great job and nobody can deny that. 590 is still kicking TSN’s ass all around the dial…

    Is some of the programming bad? Yes. Since Tim and Sid left, I no longer listen to the Fan and often catch only podcasts of the roundtable on PTS.

    The weekend shows I don’t listen too and neither should you. Barb and Howard Berger were useless so letting them go was no big deal..Barb was only ever good with Gord Stellick.

    The Ken Reid era we currently in has more to do with Bob keeping someone stupid and annoying around him to make himself seem great. He’s a smart dude.

  20. Sam in Scarb says:

    @ jamally

    “The Ken Reid era we currently in has more to do with Bob keeping someone stupid and annoying around him to make himself seem great. He’s a smart dude.”

    FINALLY someone else who gets it !

    I do not believe it was planned from the outset but Bob realizing that Reid is a dumb cluk keeps him around to make himself look more knowledgeable.

  21. Steve Clark says:

    If you are going to get a new job, San Francisco is not a bad place to land! Wonder if Rogers will look at internal candidates, or reach for someone outside the company.

  22. Antonio says:

    I guess I’m in the minority in that I can’t stand the Tim & Sid act. If I was 15, liked to listen to rap music and every now and then got bent out of shape over an innocuous issue, I could identify with these guys and enjoy listening to them.

    On their own, I can listen to them but together, they’re just plain annoying.

  23. yaz says:

    I hope the new PD puts it in Wilner’s contract that he must consume half a bottle of Vodka before the post game show starts and finish it over the course of the show. Would definitely increase the entertainment value and would enhance his belligerence.

  24. hockeyfan99 says:

    CBS Sports Radio’s programming is far superior to the Fan 590.

  25. Curt says:

    People bitch a lot about Bob (myself included) but my god, Blair is awful. The man struggles to put a sentence together. He also fluctuates between cutting off his guests when they’re trying to make a good point, and letting them ramble on while the audience nods off. Blair isn’t bad as a guest himself, but I don’t understand why he is a host.

  26. Neil says:

    I hope the new PD Assigns Shi Dhividi to Jays talk while Shi continues to do his insider stuff. Demote Wilner to sideline reporter.

  27. McLean_Deluxe says:


    So on one hand you think we are supposed to put Cito on a pedestal and not criticize or dare have the integrity to question him to his face, but on the other hand you expect “journalistic integrity” from the host of a radio call in show?!?! Hilarious. Clearly the person with the personal vendetta is Neil. Wilner is rational and just fine.

  28. Ken B says:

    Besides the excellent hockey by two great teams in the Anaheim-Chicago series, I’ve found it quite enjoyable to have a reprieve from being subjected to the dreadfully ill-suited George Strombo between periods. With Daren Millard as host, there’s none of the ‘hey guys look at me and how cool I’m trying to be’ shtick. Meanwhile, in the other series with all the celebrity sightings in the crowd at MSG, Strombo would be more at home grabbing a comment from the likes of John McEnroe or Liam Neeson. Though I thought Strombo’s hiring was right up there with the worst faux pas Rogers made with their hockey broadcasts, I initially gave him the benefit of the doubt that maybe he’d adapt to the role, but it clearly hasn’t happened. At least for the Stanley Cup finals, they’ll be the NBC option.

  29. Jamally says:

    I wonder how a Chicago vs. NYR cup final would do against a Golden State vs Cleveland final.

    On one hand you have two huge US markets for the NHL series. On the other hand, you have the best/most popular player in Lebron James vs. the heir to the throne in Steph Curry.

    In terms of Canadian ratings, the NHL obviously wins….in the US, the NBA wins…but I’m curious about the gap. Both are compelling finals.

    Of course, in typical NHL style, I’d expect an Anaheim vs Tampa Bay final that would get a 0.1 rating.

  30. Antonio says:

    Hopefully he can take Rusic with him. I cant take him anymore. I listened for about 10 minutes this morning and without a word of a lie he used the word “stud” no less than 6 times. Every elite athlete is a “stud” according to Rusic.

    First of all, I hate it when sports guys use that word and secondly, with Rusic’s obvious lisp, its just sounds terribly gay. Sorry, but it does.

  31. Neil says:

    @Mclean Deluxe

    “So on one hand you think we are supposed to put Cito on a pedestal and not criticize or dare have the integrity to question him to his face, but on the other hand you expect “journalistic integrity” from the host of a radio call in show?!?! Hilarious”

    It seems as though you have absolutely no clue about journalistic integrity or what is means to be rational, If your putting Mike Wilner and journalistic integrity in the same conversation.
    It’s clear you may not even know or remember Mike’s predecessor who handled the fans with much humility regardless of what they had to say, and respected the fact that everyone had an opinion, Dan Shulman is now with ESPN the standard for sports broadcasting, because integrity brings people a long way. Jays Talk is not about Mike and his desire for fame and how right he wants to make himself seem by demeaning calliers, it’s also not about Mike’s extreme effort to shill for Rogers and their products, the show is based around the team and also the fans opinions right or wrong funny or sad.

    Cito deserved criticism when he made mistakes equally he deserved credit where it was due, In Cito’s last stint where the Jays went 51-37 after John Gibbons 34-39 start(something you never hear Mike mention) Mike criticized every Cito’s every move, I rarely ever heard any kind of positive comment for the man that brought the jays back to respectability that year and previously helped bring two championship titles to Toronto and on the flipside that year there was no criticism for Gibbons that left 34-39 Rational? Mike openly ripped Cito after loses and equally after wins, and now in contrast dares fans to criticize John Gibbons at all, even though some of John Gibbons mistakes are glaring in game and then pointed out by other media members which are also Mike’s collegues who have played the game at key positions, Is this rational to you? or just unadulterated bias when it comes to his guy Gibbons? He says that this manager has only made 1 mistake all year, Rational or confirmation bias? When callers suggest that every year is the same, Mike berates the caller, ultimately suggesting that it is not and that every year is completely different, this is Mike being masterful in arguing semantics, Mike always likes to argue how a team gets to their results while the fans overall point is that the results is the same regardless, Year after year Mike talks about injuries like other teams don’t have them or as though injuries has been the reason this team has been out of the playoff for the past 20+ seasons. Rational?
    Was it Rational to you when he was a staunch supporter of JP Richardi a man that set this franchise back with some of the worst contracts in sports history particularly the Vernon Wells contract. Mike backed the contract, Wells career went downhill after being shipped out about a year later. Mikes backing of the contract and his berating of callers that didn’t support It, Rational? Mike says Alex has done a wonderful job yet jays have not sniffed a playoff under his management, Alex gets praise, John Gibbons gets a free pass neither get the slightest critic from Mike? Rational? You have a problem with Cito getting respect, and the jays won under Cito, But you don’t have a problem with Mike giving Alex and John a free pass. Rational? Mike has always tried to argue that a manager does not matter, and then in the same breath destroyed Cito’s in game decision making and then says John Gibbons is a masterful tactition, Does a manager matter or not? If this is not the biggest contradiction I don’t know what is. Rational?

    @Mclean Deluxe if Mike is fine and Rational as you claim and berating callers is fine then maybe the problem is people like you commending low class behavior and treating Mike like God, this is the reason this goofball is still on the airwaves.

  32. Dave in Bolton says:

    Bring back Nelson Millman! 590 has not been the same since he left

  33. Neil says:

    Make 680news a hybrid station with sports in the day(breaking news and traffic in between) News overnight from 12am to 5:45am 590 would became the All Jays station, shift all the people with jays poms poms over to 590. Wouldn’t that only be Wilner?

  34. Reggie says:

    I cant stand wilner and his condescending attitude too Neil. But if I heard wilner got shot by an online/radio stalker I think we would all know who did it. Find a hobby or a job.

  35. Matty Zero says:

    All Wilner needs is a shitty catchphrase like ‘He Gone’ and you would see him for what he is; a condescending homer.

  36. Don River says:

    As ordered, Kollins successfully turned the station into a Blue Jays propoganada platform. What more did Rogers want from him?

    Arash Madani and Jeff Blair must be in a competition to see who can interrupt their guests more often. Though Blair wins in a landslide to see which one can produce more dead air.

  37. Jim from Abroad says:

    How angry will Bob McCown be that Tim & Sid are going into straight competition with him for guests AND will do so with the help of his long time producer? Is that the reason he is on holiday in Ryan Walsh’ last week on duty?

  38. Monty says:

    Something I can’t understand – About 99% of people
    I know and posters on here detest Wilner – Why then
    is he still employed – The only reason I can think of
    is he works for free so he can get to shower with the team-
    The guy is a jerk-

  39. Neil says:


    I couldn’t have said it any better.

  40. d says:

    Agreed Charlie Brown. I had a few days off this week and really enjoyed listening to Ryan Pinder. I like Blair but I think he’d do much better with a co-host. I think I prefer PTS when Blair is hosting. A lot less fluff and a lot more informed sports talk.

    In regards to Kollins, I think he made some good moves and some bad ones. I wish he would have been more like Nelson Millman and interacted with the listeners.

  41. MattK says:

    Neil: You gave Kudos for someone commenting this “Has Shi ever wanted to punch noted dbag, Mike Wilner?”

    Here’s a quote you made on this post “maybe the problem is people like you commending low class behavior”

    Do as I say not as I do.

  42. Sam in Scarb says:

    Any info if aka Don Kollins is taking Jeff Lumby & Andy Krystal with him to San Fran ?

  43. torontosportsmedia says:

    I am noticing…I have always tried to let those commenting self police however I have just about had enough. Keep to the topic at hand and about others posting please. TSM

  44. torontosportsmedia says:

    just keep it civil between you please

  45. Ben says:


    Call me an independent observer who felt your ‘circus’ was over the line. No human being should be belittled, bullied or attacked, simple as that. Your don’t like a broadcaster, fine, say your piece, but anyone who has an equal (everyone’s opinion is equal, not one persons is greater) shouldn’t be attacked for having said opinion, its the human thing to do. I don’t care about Wilner, I just hate seeing people put down on a website for having an opposite opinion as you. Your opinion shouldn’t be greater than their’s, it should be equal.

    Good day,


  46. Darrell says:

    I do not make a plan of catching Jays Talk on the radio but caught the very last caller today after a 6-5 loss to Minnesota.

    To recap: Caller calls in from Arizona. Caller starts to make his point in relation to the failures of the Blue Jays and how the team has not won in 22 years and how Wilner never allows anyone to complain about their favorite ball club. He goes a step further to say that basically Wilner is always an apologist.

    Wilner replies: Questioning whether the caller is really from Arizona, based on the caller’s accent. Then gets extremely defensive and dismissive.

    How in the world do the idiots at Rogers think he, as a host of Jays Talk, is acceptable when you are not allowed to complain about the failures of the team and goes even a step further as to bash the caller because he doesn’t sound like he’s got an accent of an Arizona resident.

  47. Don River says:

    Wilner’s doing a super-terrific job! The more Jays fans he pisses off, the happier I am.

  48. torontosportsmedia says:

    You are correct @Neil. You can disagree with everyone here, however my only rule is to keep it respectful If everyone does that, we are good.


  49. Doug Murray says:


    I am with you 100% on Tim and Sid. Annoying beyond belief, only funny to themselves, and way over the top with their faux outrage.

  50. Steve Clark says:

    Don Kollins old position has been posted. Will they stay internal, or look outside?

  51. Steve Clark says:

    Don Kollins old position has been posted on the Rogers Job Site.. Internal candidate or external? Who gets it?

  52. Darrell says:

    The station can only go up, after Don Kollins.

    Partly kidding and yet somewhat serious question here, maybe Nelson Millman can return? Where is he now? I miss those days when he was on with Mike Hogan on the FAN and he would honestly engage with listeners as to how they wanted their station to run.

    Kollins never did that!

  53. Pudge72 says:

    @ Too Much – the announcement by the SF station is slightly hilarious in saying that they looked “way north” for Kollins, seeing as how Toronto is actually south of Portland Oregon.

  54. Darrell says:

    Although briefly, it was great to see Millman give McCown a bottled water and see him on camera briefly!

  55. Nate says:


    I’m late to this party, but you put the exact words of my Wilner frustration down beautifully. Everything you wrote was bang on. Worse still, I’m assuming Kollins let the guy do play-by play. Nuff said. He loves to argue for the sake of arguing. Complete ass. Too many contradictions to even remember or get into.

    Never called Jays talk in my life but listen to nearly every single one. Dude is a cancer to the broadcast.

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