Prime Time Sports Review for Monday, March 4, 2013

By Ami Angelwings

4pm hour – Bob McCown hosting

First segment: Interview with Tim Micallef and Sid Seixeiro, hosts of Tim and Sid, Sportsnet590 The FAN

  • Bob, Tim and Sid talk about Bob’s old morning show, discuss previous and current Saturday Night Live regulars
  • Bob says that his makeout song was Ravel’s Bolero

Second segment: Interview with Arash Madani, Sportsnet reporter

  • Bob and Madani talk about the Jays going to the World Baseball Classic, discuss the problems with the WBC
  • Madani reports on what’s been going on at Jays’ spring training

5pm hour – Bob McCown hosting, Stephen Brunt co-hosting

First segment: Talk segment

  • Bob and Brunt discuss the bad ratings for the Toronto Raptors
  • Bob wonders what’s going to happen in April to the Raptors and Toronto FC if the Leafs are in the playoff hunt and the Jays’ season kicks off, suspects they will get buried

Second segment: Interview with Jim Hughson, CBC hockey play-by-play commentator

  • Bob and Hughson discuss the beginnings of CBC broadcasting hockey on TV and the impact Foster Hewitt had on hockey broadcasting
  • Hughson talks about recording all the voice clips for the EA Sports NHL video games

Third segment: Interview with Ken Rosenthal, FOX Sports baseball writer

  • Rosenthal talks about the World Baseball Classic and the problems with when they hold it
  • Rosenthal doesn’t agree with Bob that they should hold it in November after the end of the MLB season
  • Brunt asks Rosenthal about the Texas Rangers apparently trying to remove Nolan Ryan from ownership, Rosenthal says it seems like a weird thing to try to do if it’s true
  • Bob asks if Ryan would be interested in being part of the Houston Astros organization, Rosenthal says he can’t see it being a good match

6pm hour – Bob McCown hosting, Stephen Brunt co-hosting

First segment: Interview with Bob Ryan, The Boston Globe

  • Ryan gives his opinion on the World Baseball Classic, says that Americans generally don’t care about world championships
  • Ryan talks about the Bruins/Canadiens rivalry, isn’t sure if there’s one incident that began it, historically
  • Ryan discusses Tom Brady taking less money in his last contract, likes that Brady doesn’t want to talk about his salary and thinks that players are being paid too much in general, Brunt points out that Brady has a guaranteed contract unlike others
  • Ryan talks about Joe Flacco’s big contract
  • Ryan talks about Gonzaga being ranked #1 in US college basketball, thinks it’s a great story

Second segment: Interview with Bob Nicholson, President of Hockey Canada

  • Nicholson talks about the possibility of the NHL going to Sochi
  • Brunt brings up NHL owners wanting free tickets, Nicholson thinks they deserve it since they are providing the majority of the product

Third segment: Interview with Katie Hnida, former Division I college football player

  • Hnida comments on Laura Silberman attempting and failing 2 kicks at theJets combine, says that her form seemed weird
  • Brunt asks if this will set back the cause of women trying to play football, Hnida says she hopes not, points out that she and other women have played football with men and kicked successfully
  • Hnida talks about women in the game, and women’s football leagues and that there’s a lot of women playing football competitively


I wish that one woman flubbing kicking a football didn’t mean people started to wonder how this reflects on all women, or if it sets women football players back, but given that those things have come up around the Silberman failed kicks, I thought Hnida did a really good job talking about that in her interview.  She also gave a pretty good run down on what’s going on around women and competitive football, and I enjoyed that. 🙂  I thought Bob was really good about this topic.  He mentioned it several times in all 3 hours, but he didn’t make any jokes about it, or suggest that women couldn’t play football.  He treated it like it was just one woman screwing up (and possibly putting everybody on.)

There was a LOT of talk about the World Baseball Classic today, and specifically about how and why it doesn’t work.  Madani, Rosenthal and Ryan all had something to say about it, and it was a little repetitive, especially with Bob (McCown) repeating the same opinion each time.

I thought the Hughson interview was really interesting, because I wasn’t around for Foster Hewitt and I enjoyed hearing about the history of hockey broadcasting in Canada.  I also thought Hughson talking about recording his voice for the NHL series of games to be really neat too because I grew up on those games. Playing those games was actually the first time I had heard Hughson because Bob Cole and Harry Neale were still the CBC Leaf voices, and when I finally heard him on a CBC game, I was like, “hey I know that guy!”  I always thought it must suck to have to record so much dialogue to be pieced together for all sorts of in-game situations, and especially to record you saying every single players’ name in all sorts of leagues, and he made it sound about as tedious as I thought it was.

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March 5, 2013 5:31 am

I wonder if Bob’s dislike of this year’s WBC has to do with the possibility it will effect the Blue Jays in a negative way.

did they play the famous drop of coach Gary Barnett talking about Hnida? “Katie was a girl. In fact, she was terrible.”

Ami Angelwings
March 5, 2013 5:44 am

No, they didn’t mention it at all. Probably because then it would get into the other more serious issues, since the comments were made by him in response to her allegations that she had been raped by a teammate.

Ami Angelwings
March 5, 2013 5:47 am

I think Bob’s dislike of the WBC just has to do with him thinking he has a better idea for it (holding it in November). You know how he is when he thinks he’s got a better way to do things.

He’s actually made the argument on a previous roundtable that having a lot of Jays go to the WBC is good because it indicates that the Jays have a lot of quality players.

March 5, 2013 6:13 am

Thanks Ami. The reason Ryan kept repeating his opinion is that McCown wouldn’t drop the damn topic even after there was nothing left to say!

Raptors Devotee
Raptors Devotee
March 5, 2013 8:48 am

The 5:00 p.m. podcast isn’t up and I would love to hear Bob and Brunt talk about the poor basketball radio ratings. First time I have EVER heard this discussed in all my years as a Raptors fan, like from the beginning. On the television side, sure, lots of talk, but radio, they have gotten a free pass.

Even without listening I can put in a few points. The only sport ideally suited, and often better on the radio than on television, is baseball, hands down. The game with lots of down time throughout the game is perfect for the combination of play-by-play and game action. You have the time to tell stories, anecdotes, you name it.

The other fast actioned sports just don’t lend themselves well to radio. Having said that, I much prefer listening to Smith/Jones over any telecast that Leo Rautins is on i.e. Sportsnet games, as he (Leo) is that bad, and it is a complete joke that he has been on air since the inception of this team. As the fans have evolved many of our broadcasters have not, and it is a sad commentary on the state of broadcast affairs when we are paid lip service as to who is our mouthpiece to the games.

Getting back to the radio broadcasts, with a team this bad, and they are still that bad, a major work in progress, you have to be a real degenerate basketball fan to tune in to a complete broadcast. I do listen to the telecasts when I am in my car for a few minutes of action to get the score and a feel for the game.

I really wonder how much would change if the Raptors decided not to have any radio broadcasts at all. The Montreal Expos in their dying years did it only via the internet. Not the greatest example as they were a dying franchise at that time owned by Major League baseball and were dead man walking. Even so, the hard core audience still found them on the net, and that was 10 years ago.

The Raptors are #1 a live event to attend and #2 a television game to watch. Radio is so non-relevant that I don’t even think it would make a marked difference on the branding of the team. Having said that, if they only ran the broadcasts online it would appear Mickey Mouse, so I can’t see that happening.

March 5, 2013 10:53 am

Raptors Devotee and Ami,

Bob and Brunt were not specific about TV or radio. They mention a potential audience of 1 million for Blue Jays games, which leads me to believe they are talking about TV. Plus Brunt mentions talking about his “sports watching” habits.

What did TSN 1050 carry on Friday night? B/c they mention TSN carrying the TFC game, but didn’t reference which medium.

Ami Angelwings
March 5, 2013 11:21 am

@Derrick I just listened again. While they didn’t specifically say radio, I think Bob meant radio because he said he was looking at the ratings for “this network” and that it was for Friday’s game versus the Pacers which was shown on TV on TSN, but on radio on the FAN590. Also, he compared the ratings to other radio shows, so to me that implied that he was talking about radio. But I could be wrong about what he meant. When Brunt was talking about watching TV, he was talking about the Raptors in general, but I think Bob started it off by talking about radio. You’re right that it isn’t entirely clear because they jumped around from radio and TV during the discussion.

Ami Angelwings
March 5, 2013 12:08 pm

@Derrick And I listened again again, and I think you’re right. I thought Bob was referring to radio shows when he was comparing them, but he only said “this network” again (I keep forgetting that he’s being simulcast on TV). What confused me is that TSN had the Friday game. Bob may be thinking of another game. But it does sound as if they’re probably talking about TV.

March 5, 2013 12:17 pm


I think the overnights for T.V. are easier (and quicker) to obtain than radio, plus I believe the term “overnights” is used for T.V., but I could be wrong on that one. I’ve never heard the term applied to radio.

I think the point is that the current ratings for Raptors games is as low as it can go. The Maple Leaf’s and the Blue Jays get decent ratings, even when they are bad, because of a large fan base. The Raptors, Argos and TFC, not so much.

Ami Angelwings
March 5, 2013 12:21 pm

I think you’re right about that too. It does sound like they’re talking about TV. Sorry if I confused/misled anyone. 🙁

March 5, 2013 2:42 pm

The TV ratings that get very selectively publicized or leaked should always be under some suspicion, as much for what we don’t hear as what we do hear. We rarely hear anything except national ratings, yet we know that, with the exception of hockey, the GTA is largely a different animal from the rest of Canada. Western Canada watches the CFL in huge numbers, while I suspect they do a good job of covering up their lack of popularity in Ontario. And presumably the Jays and particularly the Raptors would be more watched in southern Ontario than in the rest of Canada. I’d like to see a weekly list of the TV ratings for live sports events for just the Toronto market, but I’m not holding my breath waiting for it to happen since even the selective national info is so inexplicably guarded and apparently must be obtained indirectly from third parties, not BBM.

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