Toronto Sports Media From May To June


It’s been a crazy couple of weeks sports media fans and I finally have a few minutes to settle down for a few minutes and put fingers to this keyboard.

No major items to break, so just some random thoughts:

A reliable source tells me that things are 50/50 at best on Bob McCown re-signing with the Fan 590. Not that I don’t believe the source, I do, but I can’t imagine for 1 second Bob doesn’t come back. Obviously, I could be wrong, but I have Bob re-upping with Rogers in some way or another.

Growing up a sports radio fan I have had my personal favorites and those I don’t really care for too. While I haven’t appreciated the 24/7 NFL banter on Mike and Mike on ESPN radio, I have nothing but respect for the show these two guys have created and more importantly the brand they built together.

It was stunning to read that the duo was “breaking up” over the last couple of months. Richard Deitsch has an incredible play by play on the erosion of what I suspect many believe is the most stunning sports radio divorce ever.

Like other splits it sad that the duo is going their own ways. What is really sad, however, is that they splitting this way.

My take, given the Deitcsh article, Greenberg is a sleaze. I have no issue with him wanting to do other things. All he had to do was share this intent with his long time co-host. If that really didn’t happen shame on Greenberg. I won’t watch his new show.

Speaking of Deitcsh, James Duthie was on his podcast this week.

As always a great use of time if you are into this kind of stuff.

I am a huge Duthie fan and he does not disappoint in this interview. The highlight for me, no joke, was Duthie having to excuse himself while his dogs were antagonizing his neighbor. Here are some things that stood out for me in the interview:

On the topic of Canadian sports media vs USA:

Sigh- everything is smaller, 10:1 scale on everything. More people, bigger budgets, everything to scale. Kinder and gentler in Canada not as much yelling and screaming.

On Adnan Virk, massive Canadian mistake to let Adnan go. He never really got to be on a sports network in Canada.

On Jay and Dan heading to the USA:

It was too good an opportunity for them to pass up.

On his opportunities to head south of the border:

Been occasions over the year to go to the USA, he’s always thought really small. He aspired to be a local sports anchor in Ottawa and thought that would be as high as it could get. He really likes what he does at TSN. The chances to move to the USA that have come up just didn’t work out. He hasn’t been pursued very much, one network did and it was a ludicrous offer. A prominent anchor left a netowrk and they called him and he said to the guy- “you are nuts, America would say what the hell is this guy doing on the show – I talked him out of it by the end of the call.”

Great hat tip to Deitsch for recognziing that the NHL draft is the best of the bunch in terms of tv coverage. He says, TSN coverage of draft is blueprint for what USA networks should do for drafts.

Duthie said It’s really Bob and Darren to do the hard work on the draft. One of the hardest part of losing rights to Rogers was the NHL Draft. It’s one of the happiest days of the year, everyone is happy.

When asked if he thought the audience for hockey had peaked in Canada he said, “I can’t see the audience size in Canada being much more than it is now. My kids don’t watch games, they watch Snapchat stories.”

Duthie on his approach to broadcasting “Nevertake it too seriously on air, its not life or death”

My take on listening to this interview and what others have told me about Duthie, he follows the McCown edict of “don’t mess with happy”. So while he probably could have left and made more money elsewhere he’s very happy doing what he does, with those he does it and for who he does it for.

Right or wrong, is only for him to say and I respect that.

Mike Wilner was on the Fan radio show this week and was asked to offer an opinion on when he thought it might be time for the Blue Jays to start trading assets to rebuild ( i am paraphrasing). Wilner refused to answer the question. Despite numerous attmepts to get him to answer he would not.

Compare that with John Paul Morosi who was on with Blocker Blair who said dont’ be surprised if Shapiro acts swiftly in making moves.

Kudos to Mark Spector over at Sportsnet for writing this column on the pathetic response to the homophobic slur uttered by Getzlaf this past week.

Truth be told it was a valid response to a shitty episode. It follows the equally as awesome article written by Damien Cox last time this issue raised it’s ugly head.

“It’s 2016. Enough.”

Right on, one year later and it’s still enough.

What I don’t get is why no one wrote a similar article about Toronto Blue Jay Kevin Pillar doing the EXACT same thing.

I don’t want to hear the Rogers crap.

Rogers owns 50% of the Leafs, has naming rights in the NHL and pays the NHL a massive amount of money for hockey rights.

Rogers owns the Blue Jays wholly.

I heard the Fan morning guys, the TSN moring and drive home guys tackle the issue on Pillar.

There was no similar article written,that I saw on Sportsnet like these two masterpieces…

Why the @!#@[email protected] not?

Did McCown really say, wrong guy wrong time???

Look, calling out Pillar doesn’t mean you banish him to hell forever.

Good people do dumb things sometimes and yes, it’s okay to say it.

Richard Griffin said as much on TSN radio this week.

Scott MacArthur dealt with this issue on his show and issued this opinion too.

As did Cathal Kelly in the Globe and Mail.

Yes, the Jays management handled it like pros. Kudos to them.

But Damien is right. It’s enough. It would be nice if those who cover the team had the (base)balls to say it too.

I’ve talked to NHL officials about this issue and they tell me two things of interest (one related and one not):

The ice is the most foul-mouthed place on the planet. This one official specifically told me that he doesn’t believe the guys mean (and may not even understand) 90% of the stuff that comes out of their mouths on the ice. While I don’t agree with the sentiment, he told me the issue is the cameras because you will never clean up “schoolyard”.

I asked this official by the way about all the instant replays. Why, I asked him, don’t they just make the call “in Toronto” and take the on-ice officials out of it. “We wish they would” he told me, shooting down my theory that the on ice boys want to maintain control. “The problem is, that for the most part, the guys in the room are not the decision makers. The big guys are rarely in the room. The guys in the room have the best jobs, they are buddies with the big guys, they sit in a cozy room with dozens of screens and they have no accountability.”

BTW, Wilner tweeting that he hoped MLB would handle the Tomahawk Chop at the same time as dealing with Pillar was, in my mind a total joke.

The Chop issue deserves to be discussed and debated on its merits alone. Marrying it to this issue disrespects BOTH issues. Once again, no reason no to call out Pillar one his own for the despicable thing he said.

Having Sirius XM radio I get to listen to a lot of new baseball play by play crews. I know I am going to take shit for this, but man there are a lot of BORING crews out there. I know it’s baseball, but wow, it’s like these guys are describing a funeral. Say this about the Jays crew, they at least sound interested.

You may not have seen this article, but wow did ESPN undress Richard Sherman and my Seattle Seahwawks this week.

This is a must read for sports fans.

The story was ripped to shred by Bennett and others on the Hawks. You know me, where there is smoke…

Radio ratings come out June 7. We will hope to get them for you when they come out.

You know I love me my TV shows, I just caught up on the Leftovers. Wow…what a ride. I am also loving the latest season of Silicon Valley.

Thinking of catching the Jays when they are here in Seattle. Is anyone going to be out to see any games?

It’s a holiday weekend here so I am going to enjoy the SUN

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