Friday, April 03, 2009
ESPN is obviously heavily vested in Todd McShay, but it has come at the expensive of Mel Kiper. Well now ESPN is sending McShay to the Draft, to ultimately steal some of Kiper's thunder, and stage fake fights between the two, ala Salisbury and Clayton. Via USA Today....
Here's how far the notion of the TV NFL draftnik has evolved: Mel Kiper, the category's inventor, will now face off against his Kiper 2.0 — Todd McShay, who this month will be added to ESPN's draft coverage.Ummm, I would beg to differ on that point, but all that matters is what he ultimately believes in his heart. I have no idea when on-air fighting became the norm in the world of Sports, and while it has worked to some degree, at some point it becomes too much (i.e.- Clayton and Salisbury). When it gets to the point where it starts distracting the viewer, it's time to change things up. Hopefully that doesn't happen to the Draft.
Kiper will be in his usual perch at the New York draft site; McShay will be at ESPN's studios in Connecticut. McShay, who last year was on ESPNews' draft coverage, will also be equipped with the same type of video screen CNN used on its election coverage, largely to zoom in on geographic areas. Rothman says: "I hate to call it our John King/CNN board, but it's the same technology. But we're not going to Google Earth the Pop Warner fields these kids played on. We'll use it to show things like best available players."
McShay's take on the board: "It's an enormous iPhone, NFL version."
Heated point-counterpoint segments are now common across TV as a handy way to convert any issue into harrumph-filled theatrics. But McShay says, "One nice thing is I've never felt that pressure, and I think Mel would agree. I don't change my opinion just to be argumentative."
(Oh and ESPN, I apologize for the above picture. For some reason there are no photos of the two on the media website, and that was all I could find. You have to admit it's pretty funny though.)
ESPN has a counterpart to Kiper (USA Today)