The Dog Days Of Summer Hit Toronto In April


If the Toronto Raptors had won a round (or two)
If the Toronto Maple Leafs had won the lottery
If the Toronto Blue Jays got off to a GREAT start

The city would be humming.

Instead, none of the above happened.

The result?

There is literally no media buzz whatsoever.

The NHL playoffs have been phenomenal. The media coverage during the games (TV, twitter etc) is as good as it’s been. The morning after, the day after? Seems very vanilla to me.

There will be big news stories. There will be blips between now and say the fall. The Leafs will hire a GM and a coach. Players will be signed and maybe traded. The Raptors may make some moves. The Blue Jays will, hopefully continue to hover around 500. If they falter the audience will disappear quickly. Through 10 games they are averaging just under 25k per game (including the home opener), which is 23/30 teams. Take out the home opener and the average drops to 21k. Win and they come. Lose? Not so much.

Tough time being a fan in this town right now as it relates to the home teams. Can’t imagine the pain in trying to cover these teams right now.

Random thoughts:

McCown was away last night and Jeff Blair was paired with Stephen Brunt. That, in my mind is as good a non McCown pairing as there is for PTS.

The morning show on the Fan had a great interview with Rickey Romero this am. It’s worth a listen (the one interview)

If you are driving around on a weekend or week night after hours, take a listen to Jeff Sammut on the Fan. He’s the best radio talent without a real show on the radio scene right now.

The NBC coverage of the Isles vs Capitals game last night was AWESOME…Now, maybe the game being awesome was a mask, but it was fun to watch/listen to.

I get asked all the time, so here is what I’ve found out: the average spot for a 30 second ad per week on the TV side for Sportsnet and TSN will cost you on AVERAGE about 15k during the summer.

Anyone else think these end of season press availabilities should go the way of the game day skate?

Happy Tuesday


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April 28, 2015 11:40 am

For a few weeks there I thought Blundell & Co was getting better. Sure, it’s much more broad sports talk than B&W was but it wasn’t terrible. They lost me Monday morning giving it to TFC, who were the only Toronto victors over the weekend. The poor intern couldn’t even get through his match report. Back to Mike Richards it is. I will say that Richards seems to be less bro talk since Blundell’s launch. Perhaps trying to sway some of B&W’s morning audience.

April 28, 2015 12:02 pm

I like Jeff sammut better than Roger Lajoie when it comes to fillers… People criticize his voice not fit for radio, I think he’s alright. When it comes to radio voices, Scott Ferrall from CBS radio is the worse, but when he’s on late night on the fan, he’s by far the best this station has to offer.

April 28, 2015 1:44 pm

I’ve really come to like Sammut. He’s well spoken, versatile and conducts a good interview. I also find Jim Tatti and Mike Hogan to be an excellent pairing for TSN. By far my favourite duo on that station and a show I can actual tolerate for an entire hour as opposed to switching stations within 5 minutes.

So George Rusic has admitted recently that he is a huge Habs fan, isn’t a fan of the Jays nor cares much for the other Toronto sports teams. Then what the heck is he doing on Toronto sports radio with a plum job?! And with each passing day he sounds more like Bobcat Goldthwait. He’s getting close to driving me away from the Fan in the mornings.

Steve Jones
Steve Jones
April 28, 2015 1:59 pm

NBC has Doc Emerick and Gord Miller calling hockey. IMHO two of the best in the business.

April 28, 2015 3:23 pm

NBC has Doc Emerick and Gord Miller calling hockey. IMHO two of the best in the business.

Chris Cuthbert’s been on there too.

Gary Hart
Gary Hart
April 28, 2015 5:34 pm

Am I the only person who feels that Bob McCown’s work on PTS is slipping? Some days I feel like his Rolodex is stuck in about 1996. He regularly has repeat performances from guests that the average sports fan under 40 could barely begin to identify, let alone care about. Examples:
-Spaceman Lee was on the other day. Apparently he retired almost 35 years ago and seemingly has done nothing else notable to cause him to be a regular radio guest. I literally don’t know who this guy is or why he’s often on the air. Nothing personal, but the metaphor for me of Bob McCown in 2015 on the air. Mailing it in with same old, same old.
-Fay Vincent is fine to interview once every few years for a take, but it seems like he’s on the semi-regular rotation. He hasn’t been commissioner of MLB since Dan Quayle was the Vice President of the United States.
-The Butch Carter Experiment seems to have been mercifully euthanized but is/was another example of what seemed like one of Bob’s old buddies getting constantly invited onto the air for a regular go
-At least Dale Talon, Bob Nicholson, “Gabby” Boudreau etc are still employed but you get the feeling they’ll be invited back for 20 years after they leave the NHL.
– Don’t get me started on some of the regular voices that he probably has to air who work at Sportsnet. (I realize that’s a whole other conversation.)
-And so on. I actually could go on.

Some of Bob’s best guests – in my opinion – are the fresher takes like Jonah Keri, the Fainaru brothers, Richard Deitsch of SI, Elliote Friedman (moreso the CBC version but still excellent now), etc.

I sound like a hater; I actually do still enjoy Bob and the show, and don’t particularly mind his shtick. But mostly I just feel like PTS needs new energy, or something to give it a kick in the rear. Perhaps a new producer or a commitment to some new regular guests? When I hear the same old voices, forget flipping to TSN, I just find myself putting on a podcast. It seems like that’s what the radio execs should be most terrified about – the universe of listeners shrinking.

Finally, and obviously just a jab to close: I wish I had a hundred bucks for every time I hear the phrase “I’m [NAME]… in for the vacationing Bob McCown”.

April 28, 2015 7:32 pm

I didnt realize being a fan of the local teams was a job requirement.

I’d rather have agnostic reporters toward the local teams than sycophants.

April 28, 2015 8:33 pm

I watched the NBC feed as well. It is good that Pierre McGuire is only sprinkled into the broadcasts in smaller doses, instead of the crazyman he was on TSN.

April 29, 2015 12:13 am


“Pierre! Relax! I’m agreeing with you!”

-Gord Miller

April 29, 2015 12:50 am

IMO Jeff Sammut is the absolute worse thing on the FAN by a country mile!!

Brian Gerstein (Raptors Devotee)
April 29, 2015 3:48 am

I met Gord Miller today when I was promoting a real estate event I am doing right near where he lives, handing out the marketing materials for it. I rang the bell, he came down to open the door and looked at me while on the phone talking at the same time. I handed him what I had, highlighted my event quickly where and when it was happening, and he quickly tool it and closed the door on me. Understandable as he was on the phone, but being a huge sports fan when I saw him I excitingly said Gord Miller! and he totally did not even change his expression. One thing for sure, he is one tall dude! Steve, he was probably busy booking his next assignment for NBC.

Rob In Aurora
Rob In Aurora
April 29, 2015 8:07 am

IMO, Chris Cuthbert is the best right now, Emerick and Miller split 2nd and 3rd for me…Actually i really like Doc’s range of voice when something happens. He makes it sound like he just saw a unicorn or something when there is a big play…he’s entertaining without sounding like an affectation…

Sportsnet’s play by play guys are all terrible. I get angry every time I think about their entire hockey package, from George S., to the panels full of idiots, to their poor game calling. Embarrassing. (Bob Cole is Bob Cole, he gets a “pass”)

Mike in Burlington
April 29, 2015 8:15 am


“George Rusic has admitted recently that he is a huge Habs fan, isn’t a fan of the Jays nor cares much for the other Toronto sports teams…”

I far prefer this then the never ending ass-kissing from every other reporter in this market who is terrified of losing his access or pissing off his bosses with level reporting. Toronto sports coverage has far to many homers now, and that’s why I stopped listening along time ago

Mike S
Mike S
April 29, 2015 2:23 pm

I had a chuckle when I read Al Strachan’s response when he was recently asked by someone on Twitter about Bruce Arthur:

Question: “Did something happen between you and Bruce? Seems there’s something personal”

Strachan’s response: “No. I just get sick of his preaching”

April 29, 2015 6:06 pm

I like Jeff Sammut and yes I even like Roger Lajoie. Are they the best voices to listen to? No! But they are certainly listenable and while you may not agree with their views on particular topics, they definitely have a level of maturity and respect that has severely lacked at the FAN.

The fact that some people think Sammut’s horrible because of his voice? Sort of hypocritical isn’t it? In the US there appears to be a love affair for Scotty Farrell and by far he is the worst voice to listen to. He should like he is a human pencil sharpener and has the led caught in his throat whenever he speaks.

April 29, 2015 11:03 pm

I wonder how much Hoyes-Michalos is paying to sponsor the Bob from Vegas spots.

Three straight days of Blair saying the name of the firm incorrectly so far.

April 30, 2015 10:31 am

I thought Blundell held his own sports wise. Seems he spent the year following his dry run watching and learning sports.

My biggest criticisms about Blundell are. Recycling material, for example the segments during the 6 am hour are often repeated during the 8am hour (Rusic’s news bit, and the 5 things from last night segment). Also some of the old 102.1 bits and contests have drifted into the new show. Contests for tickets to games has become “what’s wrong with you”, and even the intern John Albanese has become the new show’s version of Todd Shapiro prior to Todd coming on full time. I’m not a fan of the Johnny (Toddy) on the street bits with random people.

April 30, 2015 3:04 pm


I don’t think Hoyes-Michalos is paying a cent, Rogers probably begged them to subscribe to Gamecentre for the next 12 years.

April 30, 2015 6:27 pm

Just listening to Naylor who had Howard Bryant (ESPN writer) on. Great perspective on the Baltimore story and the societal issues surrounding it, which most people are not considering. Good listen if you can find it somewhere.

Meanwhile, Healy and Reid are nattering on about getting pucks in deep.

April 30, 2015 8:09 pm


I heard the segment on TSN Drive with Dave Naylor and Steve Simmons talking with Howard Bryant of ESPN. Great discussion re Baltimore some great radio from a well spoken and well informed guest like Bryant. Continually 1050 is making strides over 590.

Agree about Jim Tatti and Mike Hogan being a good pairing. Lots of sports knowledge. Why in gods name does 590 continually get Joey Vendetta to be on stand by guest host. Could they not let Ben Ennis or give Kayla Harris a shot.

May 1, 2015 12:47 pm

From Bill Briox in the Star.

“Rogers scores big on NHL playoff ratings
Viewership for first round of Stanley Cup playoffs increases by 36% over last year, according to ratings company Numeris.”

“The ratings were clearly boosted by the number of Canadian teams in the first round. Games featuring those five teams — the Vancouver Canucks, Calgary Flames, Winnipeg Jets, Ottawa Senators and Montreal Canadiens — averaged 2.4 million viewers per game.
Last year, only the Canadiens made the playoffs, so the boost in opening-round audience numbers isn’t a big surprise.”

Mike S
Mike S
May 1, 2015 4:02 pm

Today’s PTS roundtable:

Jeff Blair
Michael Grange
Dave Perkins
Tim Micallef

May 1, 2015 4:46 pm

@john- you criticize a show for repeating segments at 6 and 8?. You’re ripping a show you just spent TWO HOURS listening to? That’s the problem with all you chronic complainers. If you’re listening…… No radio programer ANYWHERE cares what you think.

May 1, 2015 5:01 pm

Jeff Blair Screamed at a caller that suggested that Jays are just a marketing scam. If their not selling the amount of young arms their selling the amount of Dominican born players, if not that than the amount of Canadian born players or home run hitters. I agree the jays have probably the strongest marketing components, fans can easily be more excited about all that stuff as oppose to the stuff that makes a winner

(Another) Andrew
(Another) Andrew
May 1, 2015 5:14 pm

I wonder how much Hoyes-Michalos is paying to sponsor the Bob from Vegas spots

Maybe Bob will have interesting things to say when he gets back but the conversations he’s had on PTS from Vegas this week have been a waste of time. Each one seemed like a struggle to find things to talk about without being repetitive.

(Another) Andrew
(Another) Andrew
May 1, 2015 5:35 pm

Jeff Blair Screamed at a caller that suggested that Jays are just a marketing scam.

I heard literally one phone call this week, which led to me to turn it off until the next hour.

A caller while discussing numerous things Raptors-related also suggested Masai Ujiri’s contrived public swearing incidents might indicate lack of professionalism for a man in his position. Blair either missed the point or was disingenuous by responding with mockery saying that every four year old has heard such words before. So a point about Ujiri’s professionalism was deflected by Blair to mock other people’s prudishness. The thing is as soon as I heard the criticism I just knew Blair would get defensive on Ujiri’s behalf. Unlike Shanahan or in the distant past JP Ricciardi some of these guys just can’t be criticized without FAN hosts getting their backs up.

May 1, 2015 9:50 pm

They actually trotted out on baseball central yesterday was first time a canadian player got the win and a canadian player got an rbi.

Who cares?

May 2, 2015 12:11 pm

Bob Elliott?

May 2, 2015 9:59 pm

Bob was calling in from Vegas this week on PTS. Bob used to live in Vegas. Bob’s press pass is #2999. Bob will not be live at the boxing match. Bob will be watching in a large cattle-call room with a giant video screen. Bob says every hotel room in Vegas is sold. Bob doesn’t like Mayweather personally. Bob wouldn’t pay 5 cents to see Mike Tyson’s stand-up act. Bob had some good co-hosts this week on PTS that I like. Bob had some bad co-hosts on PTS this week that I didn’t like.

Would love your thoughts, please comment.x