Sunday Sports Musings

Hope you all had a good weekend. Little TSM has started skating again and the really baby Maple Leafs are playing so, fall must really be here.

Here is a couple of things for your Sunday evening/Monday morning:

Where’s Brunto???? So, Stephen Brunt appears to be around again, and he has yet to take his regular spot next to Bob Mccown on PTS. He was a guest the other day, but Mr. Mcgoo is in the co-host chair for at least the next couple of weeks. So, the question is, why isn’t Brunt co-hosting PTS with Mccown? Well, I had a heard a few things over the last couple of weeks that I had discounted, mostly because they didn’t make much sense and secondly because Brunt and Mccown were away. The one rumour, and it is just that, cause at least for now no one is willing to talk to me about it, on or off the record, that I keep hearing is that the folks at TSN have put the kibosh on Brunt sitting next to Mccown.

Seemed odd to me when I first heard it as Brunt, in my opinion is the guy from the Globe. With the BCE merger this week perhaps it makes more sense but that deal is a long way off from getting approved. David Naylor, it was reported in Fraudbiggin’s latest column(this is called giving credit for information learned elsewhere btw) has decided to fly the Globe and Mail nest to TSN full time, so perhaps Brunt is planning on doing the same thing.

All I know for sure is that it would seem that Brunt should be back in the co-hosts seat at the Fan 590 and he isn’t. There are rumblings that he has been blocked and well……

With Naylor apparently leaving the Globe and Mail and despite the proposed merger I have to tell you that at least a couple of industry folks have told me lately that things aren’t well inside the Globe and Mail Sports department. Call it the summer blues, but I have heard rumblings of some well respected folks looking to move on and rather quickly. Is Naylor the beginning of something??? Time may tell.

Did anyone else notice the coverage the Toronto Argos got in the Toronto Sun the morning after their most recent game??? The Sun has really improved their coverage of late. One may not love all the content (and I am talking sports here) but they certainly focus their assets to those events that go on better than the other papers. Is it quality or quantity that wins?????

I’m sure by know you’ve all seen or at least heard about the end of the Detroit Lions game vs. the Chicago Bears. The game ended in controversy as the Lions had, what would have been a game winning touchdown called back. Get a load of this coverage from the Detroit News newspaper about the game and ending:

“Lions receiver Calvin Johnson apparently caught a touchdown pass with 24 seconds left in the game but the play was called incomplete when Johnson didn’t complete the catch. Johnson came down with the ball, hit the ground, and the ball came lose. Johnson was holding the ball with one hand and as he hit the crowd and rolled over the ball came lose.

The play was reviewd and the call on the field was upheld according to the rule that you have to complete the catch.”

Wait, the play was called incomplete when he didn’t complete the catch????? Really????? No, Really?? And wait, there is a rule that says you have to complete the catch???????????

Gary Loewen is apparently alive and well!

I don’t want to be all bah humbug and all, but I can’t get excited about Maple Leafs Rookie tournament hockey. No offense to those that do, it’s just not my cup of tea. Kids playing kids is one thing. It’s just not mine. Maybe it’s just years of being teased by the future stars of the Maple Leafs that haven’t turned out. In any event. I am glad that the big boys are going to camp and, for sports reasons ONLY, this summer is finally over.

Happy Monday



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September 12, 2010 11:10 pm

If the rumors are true the loss of Brunt will have an impact on Primetime. Bob is excellent, of course, but with Brunt you got somebody who was pretty much as knowledgeable and capable as Bob but with differing opinions. It made them great to listen to.

I too am not crazy about Shannon. Hopefully they will at least be able to juggle different people in there if no one is available to do it on a daily basis.

September 12, 2010 11:40 pm

Lions blogger – I think (assume / hope) he was trying to be funny.

Actually, with the BCE deal, TSN and the G&M are splitting up are they not? So it actually makes no sense to block him, unless he is going to TSN.

Right now, both TSN and G&M are part of CTVglobemedia which BCE owns 15%.

Under the sale, BCE would own all of TSN and G&M would be a separate company with BCE owning 15%.

So why would they block him now?

Raptors Devotee
Raptors Devotee
September 13, 2010 12:04 am

TSM, great detective work and using your sources. If true, then not only do we have to put up with Mr. Magoo more often for now (Which I choose not to but others may fill the need to in order to get their PTS fix), but Brunt will be sorely missed, as Rob alluded to. The chemistry and mutual respect that Bob and Stephen have for each other can not be easily duplicated, and factoring in the ridiculous time slot move on top of it, I really think that Bob will jump ship once his contract expires, or possibly before.

The bad news just keeps getting piled on for us loyal Fan listeners, who have had a lot to endure of late. We have no choice now but to listen less and also find alternatives, as the FAN is certainly doing everything in its power of late to drive me away.

September 13, 2010 3:48 am

Oh man. I hope you’re wrong. I’m sick of Shannon in there. McCown and Brunt are such a great pairing,

By the way – has anyone looked at The Fan schedule? Replay of the hockey show at 11pm and ESPN at midnight. No late night show anymore.

mike (in boston)
mike (in boston)
September 13, 2010 8:03 am

as a writer Brunt has to articulate and justify his opinions. in other words, he has to “make the case” for his conclusions. this really comes across when he’s on the show. he’s able to carry the argument beyond a mere statement of his opinion. when Brunt is on PTS he really challenges Bob and it makes the show very good. as lazy as Bob has become, he is still a good broadcaster and can rise to the challenge.

it’s in stark contrast with the dynamic when the FOB are on the show. that is becoming increasingly unlistenable and 2 roundtables a week only exacerbates the problem.

KD in Sauga City
KD in Sauga City
September 13, 2010 12:17 pm

…first time long time.

I just had to write to echo opinions on Mr. Magoo. I too can no longer stand the guy. I think when Bob is paired with Mr. Magoo, PTS really tends to alienate younger listeners, namely the below 40 crowd. How many references to the 70s and 80s can one take? In addition, Mr. Magoo’s knowledge does not really extend beyond hockey, and I find his hockey opinions completely uninformative.

September 13, 2010 2:03 pm

The biggest problem with problem with Shannon is that is is an unrepentant apologist for the NHL head office? Who wants to listen to an NHL shill all the time?

Sam from Scarbrough
September 13, 2010 3:19 pm

With many changes at fan/590 in the last 6 days..
Mid-Afternoon sports with Bobcat….Morning show shuffle..
Maybe,just maybe is Kollins not calling the shots anymore !
(gawd I hope so)
Saying he is “toast” right now would be PR suicide…
Maybe,maybe just a thought.

September 13, 2010 3:36 pm

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! If Brunt is no longer the co-host my viewing of PTS will diminish greatly except for when there’s a really interesting guest or if Bruce Arthur is co-hosting.

Slim Whitman
September 13, 2010 3:54 pm

Mr Magoo (Shannon ) on the fan at 4 PM Bye Bye I am gone for the rest of the day
Hummmm Da ya think I am the only one?

September 13, 2010 9:04 pm

Really like the description from Mike in Btown on Brunt. What I like about Brunt is that he’s a true intellectual and a very good contrast to the know-it-all ego of McCown. The other week Brunt was a guest for a couple of segments via phone and the contrast of knowledge and just how he forms his opinions compared to Shannon is just night and day.

It seems like Perkins is being more of a regular, and I do think he’s decent at times. But this is another guy who’s on the other side of retirement. I’m not going all Logan’s Run here and saying there’s not a room for vets. I liked listening to Hunt and Marsden back in the day, but they were paired with a hungry new fresh voice in McCown. McCown still has a good voice, but he is now the veteran. He really needs to be paired with somebody who’s got a different view point (and hopefully fresher) than him. With Shannon there, PTS is becoming the old guys in the balcony during the Muppet Show complaining.

As for your NFL question, can’t blame the refs, because that is how you call it in the rulebook. But the problem is in that rule. Not sure how you can have it just to break the TD line if you are rushing it and it doesn’t matter if it gets knocked out right after you push the ball over it, but if you catch it in the endzone and get both feet in and have control then somehow you need control throughout even after you go down.

Saying all that, I’m VERY GLAD it happened because I had cash on the Bears winning, so thank goodness for odd NFL rules lol

Mike S
Mike S
September 14, 2010 1:01 am

The partnership between PTS and Sportsnet has already hurt the quality of the show………….guys like Friedman and Cox used to be frequent co-hosts but the move to Sportsnet stopped all of that…………..if they lose Brunt for the same reason it will be a complete disaster

September 14, 2010 7:55 am

I thought there was a bit of subtext when Brunt signed off at the end of his guest spot last week. Basically both he and McCown said I ‘hope’ to see you here soon, suggesting that neither knew if and when that would happen.
If they lose Brunt, and continue with Shannon as the regular co-host, I may not come back. Shannon is just awful to listen to, and as someone else noted here, he’s a constant shill for the NHL, and constantly defending his corporate buddies. But, surely the program director must know that Shannon is despised by most listeners…doesn’t he? Bruce Arthur would be a great sub for Brunt. But if they continue with Shannon, I could see them taking a hit on their next book.
Also, I know The Fan is owned by Rogers, as are the Jays, but does PTS need to do a Jays segment every day?

September 14, 2010 9:31 am


If the Globe/CTV thing has caused Brunt’s forced exit from PTS … does it also mean that the supposed Blair/Smith pairing is in jeapordy?

Curious if this is the reason why the Krystal move has been delayed a week with the fill-in of the real Statler and Waldorf duo – LaJoie and Farraway — except Statler and Waldorf were humourous..

Arthur could be a a good substitute for Brunt but must admit I will miss the intellect if S.B. leaves PTS

September 14, 2010 12:34 pm

I think the only problem with PTS is that it is aired on Sportsnet. That’s the conflict. So I don’t think there’d be a problem with a Globe (or probably even TSN) person being on at any other part of the day.

Would love your thoughts, please comment.x