Chance For TSN Radio To Make A Splash


There are opportunities in life where you simply have to take a chance. A rare window opens and you have an opportunity that takes some guts to pull off and if you don’t, you will always wonder what if.

That is where I think the execs at TSN are or will be in about 2 weeks.

They’ve launched a radio station in Toronto, as part of a larger network of stations in attempt to take on the evil Rogers empire.

They’ve done okay in year one. The ratings numbers aren’t where they would want them to be, however things are improving and when the NHL comes back in the fall (or winter) they will have 50% of the Maple Leafs games on their radio station.

However, on or about July 1, they have a rare opportunity to snag to members of the competition and what a coupe it would be if they could land either or both.

Doug MacLean and Nick Kypreos are about to be free agents, as Rogers has yet to tie either of them up beyond this NHL season that just ended.

Mr. Millard, for those asking is out of runway as it relates to his radio contract, but is still tied up for tv.

Can you imagine if TSN showed some guts and hired Kypreos and Maclean to host an all new lunch time or gulp, prime time, nation wide hockey show????

Talk about delivering an audience!

Yes, both guys do TV too.

Yes, TSN has a stable of TV guys already, but none have really translated into the same type of role on radio.

Why invest in radio if you aren’t trying to win?

What better way to win then to grab the talent from the top rated show in it’s given time slot?

Figure out the TV side of it later.

It’s only money right? The mother company just spent a boat load on a sports franchise, don’t you want to try to own the radio side of things too?

I know this article will do wonders to the ego’s of these two guys. That’s not the point. The truth is they are compelling to listen to on the radio. It’s an interesting, fun hour for both the die hard and the casual fan. It’s different.

If I am a suit at TSN, I roll the dice. I go for the jugular and I open the wallet.

You want to show the sports world you are serious about sports radio, here’s your shot.

Fascinating article I read today about the Miami Heat and why the rest of the world should be rooting for them in the NBA finals.

Strip away the drama and the Heat are called “evil” because their star players exercised free agency and—agree or disagree with their decision—took control of their own careers. The Thunder are praised for doing it the “right way,” but no franchise is more caked in original sin than the team from Oklahoma City. Their owners, Clay Bennett and Aubrey McClendon, with an assist from NBA Commissioner David Stern, stole their team with the naked audacity of Frank and Jesse James from the people of Seattle.

Take a read, let me know what you think.


photo from here

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June 14, 2012 1:05 am

I cant see Maclean and kyperos jumping ship only to be mainly radio guys and morrover, play second fiddle to dreger and mckenzie as insiders. However, money talks, and enough might do the trick.

Another Steve
Another Steve
June 14, 2012 1:05 am

Personally I think the two radio stations talk about hockey far-too much as it is.

I had hopes that the new competition would bring alternatives, and different programming, but it has often seemed to me as if they are instead racing to see who can spend the most time talking about hockey.

June 14, 2012 1:44 am

Id like to see either kyproes or maclean go, as the three man radio show is full of peple talking and one upping each other. Both are better with just millard and even better when one of them is with marek.

June 14, 2012 2:10 am

Can’t see this happening… I agree this would be a good move for TSN but the dislike SN has for TSN they would resign them both just out of spite… SN has the number 1 noon time slot rating wise but I could see Millard being replaced by Marek..

June 14, 2012 2:13 am

I don’t see TSN winning anything anytime soon as long as they keep using 1050 and it’s atrocious signal.

June 14, 2012 6:18 am

Agree with Alex.

Also, its clear HC identifies themselves as the “fun” team and TSN as the “serious” team. I recall Kypreos mention it at least once. That’s why I like listening to HC even if they say stupid stuff sometimes. I would say the three man booth is good sometimes, but the one-upping and putting Millard down gets old VERY quickly.

June 14, 2012 6:57 am

Yea more Marek would be good, but does Marek want more radio? I seem to remember when he signed last year he said he wasn’t going to be doing any radio hosting. Only time he has was when someone was sick or it was a holiday. He isn’t even a guest often. Between his TV duties being host of the ‘B’ team and his podcast, he seems pretty busy.

TSN could just put simulcast to TV any radio show over on TSN2. That was the plan at one point anyways for ‘Thats Hockey at Noon’.

But I really don’t want to see MacLean on the main TSN Panel. I think Kypreos could fill the spot that Aaron Ward has, or can supplement Dregger and McKenzie on nights when they are off. Since we know Kypreos only likes to work 3 day work weeks plus one date on, one date off on the weekend, that may be ideal.

Also, don’t rule out MLSE in all of this. Imagine if either signed to work on-air. Then, not only would they be on LeafsTV, they would be available to also work for BOTH Sportsnet and TSN, just like Jack Armstrong.

June 14, 2012 8:48 am

I’m in the majority, and I love the speculation on this, genuinely, but I can’t see TSN breaking the bank to help one hour of radio a day, and especially at noon.

The money gets paid to morning drive and afternoon drive home hosts. It’s funny in that no one takes more crap on these boards from the same 4 or 5 guys on here than McCown, Cox, Brady and they’re almost certainly the three most highest paid people at the Fan.

TSN is winning on the TV side, and I don’t even think Pierre LeBrun adds anything to their TV product. When you’ve already got great info from Dreger and McKenzie, LeBrun just seems too much. Now you’re going to add two more guys? To add a couple ratings points at noon? No chance?

They’re paying a load of money to Mike Richards and he’s delivering nothing. He probably reads the messages here and thinks, “HEY! HATE ON ME! I’M HERE! PAY ATTENTION!”. Sorry, no one does. Cybulski’s show has lost traction so it seemed from when it first started, so TSN RAdio has a lot bigger problems than their noon show.

The more interesting issue may be whether you pay MacLean or Kypreos at all until you know if you have a season. Would they have lockout insurance? It’s very unique in that respect. Living here in 2004, the radio was very hard to listen to in the months when the NHL should have been playing. Would Sportsnet kick in full-time salaries when there are no games at all?

June 14, 2012 9:22 am

Kypreos? Seriously? It boggle smy mind (and frustrates me) how rthis guy has a job as an analyst/insider. He was nothing but a good and still views the game from the same perspective….offers nothing. I refuse to listen to him on radio or watch him on TV.

June 14, 2012 9:23 am

Sorry for not fixing the typos:

Kypreos? Seriously? It boggles my mind (and frustrates me) how this guy has a job as an analyst/insider. He was nothing but a goon and still views the game from the same perspective….offers nothing. I refuse to listen to him on radio or watch him on TV.

June 14, 2012 10:43 am

I agree 100% with Brian.

“Kypper” as his lapdog Millard calls him is a meat head.

June 14, 2012 12:58 pm

Kypreos is great… but I don’t think he’ll move. He seems like a loyal guy.

MacLean though I think would move, which is too bad because the ex player and ex coach / Exec make a good contrast.

Both networks have too much dead weight in the hockey departments… ie, John Shannon. Great for business of sports discussions, but horrible on actual hockey.

June 14, 2012 1:17 pm

Nice post, Julian.

“or gulp, prime time, nation wide hockey show????”

No more prime time, daily, all hockey shows please. They’re in a good role now I think … wherever they go they should stick to something like that.

In my opinion, TSN’s real missed opportunity was not snagging Tim and Sid when they were out there.

Mike S
Mike S
June 14, 2012 1:53 pm

Julian is right about the sports radio here in Toronto during the NHL lockout of 2004-05……………it was painful…………….guys like Marek were reduced to having regular segments about the WHA and the movie “Slapshot”

I would be surprised if Kypreos and/or MacLean left Sportsnet……………however I was quite puzzled when Sportsnet decided not to send them and Millard to the Cup Final this year…………..they have always gone to the big NHL events (winter classic, draft, all-star game, etc) so I’m not sure why guys like Ian Mendes and Michael Grange were sent to the Cup Final instead………………and MacLean wasn’t even assigned to go to the Memorial Cup, which is one of Sportsnet’s biggest hockey properties

June 14, 2012 1:56 pm

Hard to imagine TSN going ‘all in’ with a move like that. And I can’t imagine SN allowing that to happen either – just think how horrible the optics of that would be.

Not that it’ll happen either, but I’d love nothing more than to see SN / The Fan ditch Millard. Brady was so much better in that role & I thought Marek was tremendous when he was filling in. Millard is insufferable.

Sam In Scarb
Sam In Scarb
June 14, 2012 5:18 pm

I can be corrected on this ,but in the last 5 years TSN has only hired TWO spotsnot employes Dregger & Feroro..
sportsnot has clearly B team staff..and if It was not for the AWFUL SCORE
they would be the c or d entries..
People…If TSN really wanted ANY of the sportsnot staff..Don’t ya think they would have gotton them by now??????????????/

June 14, 2012 7:00 pm

In the end both Doug MacLean and Nick Kypreos will re up with Rogers… can’t see them wanting to work with clowns like Darren Dreger and Bob McKenzie….. I still dont know why TSN even employs Darren Dreger and Pierre LeBrun….. both those guys just report on the exact same thing that Bob McKenzie will report on……

Anyone else think maybe Sportsnet should bring in a veteran hockey guy like Paul Romanuk or Gary Green or “Puck Daddy” Greg Wyshynski full time on the panels. They would be a huge upgrade over John Shannon and Brad May.

mike (in boston)
mike (in boston)
June 14, 2012 7:50 pm

since this thread is where the action is … the Rome – Stern interview contains some highly volatile material. Highly recommended reading and listening. In light of all the recent talk about boxing corruption, let’s not forget the least credible league when it comes to officiating.

June 14, 2012 8:50 pm

Someone mentioned the Alan Pergament blog a few days ago. It is good, very well written in a simple, fluent style. He gives the local ratings for the NHL and NBA playoffs, which had surprising results. He also mentioned that WGR will have a Sabres Hockey Hotline show this fall from 10am to noon. I wonder is TSN would do something like this with the Leafs. Personally, I prefer a mix of sports, but in this market it can’t do worse than TSN’s 1 share with Scott MacArthur, Hayes, Cybulski.
Just listening to Hogan podcast now, very good as always – and Steph is on too. I wonder what his ratings were at the end of his Fan590 days compared with Blair today. Blair is better on baseball, but I would prefer Hogan during the hockey and NFL seasons.
The Score isn’t all bad. James Sharman and KJ are doing excellent podcasts everyday reviewing the days’ matches. For print articles have to say I prefer James Lawton in The Independent to any local stuff (John Molinaro would be
better without the format – “what the result means”, “major storyline”, etc.; he is quite good on the radio). Too bad Sid Seixeiro’s show is on during games he would have had very entertaining views on the tournament if he could concentrate on the games.

June 14, 2012 10:16 pm

Kypreos & McLean are great 2 former NHLers who tell it like it is with excellent perspective and inside info – don’t want them going to TSN and their garbage signal.

Jeff Marek is totaly being misused by Rogers he is excellent on the radio i would much prefer Marek over Millard. And whoever it is at HC who produces the show needs to go for next season ignoring the Leafs on HC is a joke. Or move Marek to the mornings adios Brady.

Someone mentioned Paul Romanuk who is an excellent hockey play by play commentator. Get rid of those 2 unlistenable homer retards in Joe Blowhard Bowen & that MLSE boot licking tool Greg Millen…sign Romanuk and a new color man for Leafs games.

June 14, 2012 10:20 pm

And where will Uncle Wilbur land after August 1st?

FAN590 i hope!!

Bobby G
Bobby G
June 15, 2012 1:22 am

Romanuk? Good god… Let’s us not speak his name again

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