Tom Brennan's ESPN Bubble Has Burst

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Leave it to an ex-College Basketball coach to equate "being on the bubble" to "getting fired from ESPN. Former Vermont Coach and ESPN Analyst, Tom Brennan has been let go by ESPN after three years, and with one year left on his contract. Via the Burlington Free Press....

Brennan said he had one year left on a three-year contract, but the sports network indicated it was not going to pick up his option. The Bristol, Conn., based network has been trimming staff and costs and Brennan said he believed he might get released.

"They are not renewing me. I kind of knew that I might not continue. I knew I was on the bubble," Brennan said Monday.

Brennan said ESPN was a great run, which began in 2005 when he signed a two-year contract. He later signed a three-year pact.

"I had four years. It was a long time. Every time I went there I pinched myself. Just to be part of that, they are so professional. It was wonderful."

ESPN announced earlier this year that it would lay-off about 100 Connecticut-based employees and leave about 200 vacant jobs unfilled, according to news reports. Some new jobs will be created as the sports giant moved into new areas. The network also implemented wage freezes. ESPN is a subsidiary of the Walt Disney Co. and has about 5,500 people worldwide, including about 3,400 in Connecticut.
That's a shame, because I actually enjoyed Brennan from time to time. He and Gottlieb, would have some epic debates about bubble teams, and it's rather ironic that he would use that term to describe his contract at ESPN. I suspect he'll go back into coaching, given the lack of College Basketball outlets, but someone should take a flier on him.

ESPN, Brennan part ways (Burlington Free Press)

Mainstream Media Continues To Forget Previous Articles Written About Steroids

I'm not entirely sure why Jay Mariotti decided to wait a whole two weeks to chime in on the Raul Ibanez/Blog thing, but I'm more interested in the premise of his article. Mariotti is now about the 30th mainstream media member to comment that "steroid guessing is bad journalism", but forgetting what he has written about the subject in the past. Before we get into all of Mariotti's accusations about members of the Cubs, let's look at what he wrote late last night....

Yes, given the staggering bulk of guilty names and relentless flurry of new information, we all wonder to ourselves if every major leaguer who has played since 1995 used steroids. But that doesn't mean anyone has the right, legally or ethically, to start speculating for public consumption just because he has a functioning computer, a miniscule niche in cyberspace or a column in the dying newspaper industry. The methods of dissemination may have changed, but journalistic standards suddenly shouldn't go to hell.

If you know an athlete who uses steroids, convince us that it's true with corroborated material.

If not, please keep it to yourself.
Okay then. That's certainly an opinion someone can get behind, and if people want to follow that journalism tenet, I obviously have no problem with it. What I do have a problem with, is when it comes from someone who wrote the following:
The joke isn't funny anymore. Every time I ask Sammy Sosa about ster-oids, he uses a four-year-old punchline about his favorite vitamins. "I take my Flintstones once a day," he says, smiling as always.

But now that baseball's worst-kept secret finally is out of the medicine closet--vast numbers of players are juiced up on 'roids--it is incumbent upon Sosa and other prominent big-leaguers to start speaking up and taking a responsible stance concerning the sport's latest self-destructive issue. Very simply, he needs to tell the truth. If he hasn't used steroids, tell us. If he has used them occasionally, tell us. If he uses them regularly, tell us.

He really should just grab the cup, piddle in it and send it to the lab. It's the only way Sammy Sosa ends all suspicions, quiets the riffraff, blows away the steroid clouds and lets us resume enjoyment of his immaculate career, currently in an innuendo warp. He is sadly mistaken when he says, "The whole world knows that I am innocent."
For some reason, mainstream media members continually forget the words they wrote, if not days ago, at least a few years ago. I've said it before, and I'll say it again, what is wrong with speculating? Sports as a whole is speculation, and whether it's who used steroids?, or will Albert Pujols win the Triple Crown?....What's the big deal?

Also, what's worse in your mind? Writing out a debate with your friend about a player you have on your fantasy team, and trying to defend his stats? Or telling a player in a national publication to send his pee to a lab? Sure it was Sammy Sosa, and we all know how that turned out, but back then it was complete SPECULATION.

It's also funny to me that someone who has been taken for task about doing zero research by both clubs in Chicago, is calling out people for laziness.

Steroid Guessing Is Bad Journalism (Fanhouse)
Letter To Chicago Sun-Times (White Sox and Cubs)

You Can Have Erin Andrews Stalk You All The Way Through College!

EA Sports' NCAA '10 comes out the middle of this month, but the video game company is slowly releasing some clips of the game. We had one here last month, when it came out that EA was now on the game, but I had to also share this one. Erin Andrews will now stalk you as a highschool senior, all the way until you graduate College (*ahem*TimTebow*cough*). Oh the game....the game people.

Really EA Sports? The Road To "Glory" with Erin Andrews??? Really?!?! I guess "The Road to My Dorm Room with Erin Andrews" made the cutting room floor.

NCAA Football 10 Offers Innovative “Road to Glory” Mode With Copious Erin Andrews (The Rookies)

Sports Center Plans Its First Summer Filler Programming

Monday, June 29, 2009

You all know the "filler programming" I'm talking about. You know, the Mount Rushmores and Who's Now of summers past? Well this year's edition is pretty much along the same lines, but might actually have some promise. From June 20th to July 10th, Sports Center will be airing athlete vignettes about their favorite event to attend and/or play in, and are calling the extravaganza, "Fan Feast".

Kenny Mayne and Mike Greenberg will be your judges, and as far as athletes appearing, you'll have Kobe Bryant, Lisa Leslie and Jeff Gordon, to name a few. Here is the schedule....

Mon., June 29: Kobe Bryant – play cricket
Tue., June 30: Joe Mauer – be a quarterback at the Super Bowl
Wed., July 1: Candace Parker – attend the FIFA World Cup
Thur., July 2: Jeff Gordon – face Tony Hawk one-on-one in an X Games contest
Thur., July 2: Carl Crawford on 1:00 a.m. (10 p.m. PT) – to be a quarterback in the NFL
Fri., July 3: Blake Griffin – play football at the University of Oklahoma
Mon., July 6: Colt McCoy – attend the Masters
Tue., July 7: Trevor Hoffman – race in the Indy 500
Wed., July 8: Lisa Leslie – attend the US Open and watch a Williams sisters final
Thur., July 9: Dale Earnhardt Jr. – play in the NFL
Thur., July 9: Dick Vermeil – a front row seat at the Indy 500
Fri., July 10: Justin Morneau – play and win the Stanley Cup

Monday, July 13 – Friday, July 17

SportsCenter: Mike Greenberg’s essays on the top five to-do sports events (one each day) will be aired.

Monday, July 20 – Friday, July 24

SportsCenter: Kenny Mayne’s essays on the top five events sports fans "should see" will be aired.

ESPN Moving To South Africa For World Cup

At the start of last year's NFL season, ESPN moved just about their entire operation to Green Bay for the first Monday nighter of the year. Well the "Leader" is planning to do the same thing for the World Cup next June, but with a small catch. It won't be one will be for an entire month! Yes, all World Cup programming will be coming to you live from South Africa from June 11th to July 11th. Via ESPN PR....

ESPN will present all of its 2010 FIFA World Cup television studio programming from site in South Africa, offering U.S. sports fans the most comprehensive news and information coverage throughout the month-long soccer showcase (June 11 – July 11, 2010). Coverage of the quadrennial global event will include SportsCenter segments, nightly World Cup Live, and pre-, halftime and post-match shows, with additional studio programming and World Cup-branded segments, totaling more than 65 hours of coverage, originating from two sets in and around Johannesburg.

A trio of top-tier ESPN hosts, Chris Fowler (college football, Grand Slam tennis), Bob Ley (SportsCenter, Outside the Lines), and Mike Tirico (Super Bowl, NBA Finals, Final Four, major golf championships), will serve as on-site FIFA World Cup studio hosts. ESPN’s “game around the game” approach to South Africa 2010 will include live and taped segments that will air on ESPN International’s 13 localized versions of SportsCenter in eight different languages across the world.

South Africa 2010 will mark the first time in ESPN’s 30-year history that the entirety of its FIFA World Cup studio programming will originate on location from the site of the host country. Highlights of planned programs and 2010 FIFA World Cup-branded segments:

- SportsCenter at the FIFA World Cup;
- World Cup Live – the daily, 30-minute news, highlights and analysis program (30 episodes) aired each night of the tournament on ESPN or ESPN2;
- Live 30-minute pre-match, halftime (15 min.) and post-match shows on ABC, ESPN and ESPN2;
- World Cup segments on ESPNEWS, First Take on ESPN2, and Outside the Lines.
It's always a good idea to be live at the event you're covering, but that certainly can't be cheap, especially when you're traveling halfway around the World. Also, if you're looking for three hosts for the coverage, you can't ever go wrong with Fowler, Tirico and the great Bob Ley. Great move by ESPN, if you ask me.

Rosenthal Added To MLB Network

The MLB Network added yet another piece to their ever-growing puzzle of reporters and analysts today, by hiring FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal. According to MLB-N PR, Rosenthal will continue to work for Fox Sports, both online and on-air....

MLB Network today announced that Ken Rosenthal has joined its roster of on-air talent. Rosenthal will join the cast of MLB Tonight beginning Tuesday, June 30 at 6:00 p.m. ET. Rosenthal, who will continue his reporting for and MLB on Fox, joins Sports Illustrated senior writers Tom Verducci and Jon Heyman as Baseball Insiders on the MLB Network team.

“Ken brings a wealth of on-air reporting experience and insight into the game and we’re excited to welcome him to MLB Network,” said Tony Petitti, president and CEO of MLB Network. “As we grow as a network, it’s important that we continue to bring fans the most up-to-date information from the best resources in the business.”

Rosenthal has served as lead field reporter for MLB on Fox since 2005. Prior to joining Fox Sports, Rosenthal worked as the national baseball writer for The Sporting News and as a sportswriter at the Baltimore Sun, where he was named Maryland Sportswriter of the Year five times by the National Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association. He is a voting member of the Baseball Hall of Fame.
I still think Ken Rosenthal is a hypocrite after his Outside the Lines tirade during the whole "Ibanez Steroid Speculation" thing, but this is another big get for the MLB Network. Unlike the NFL, Major League Baseball only has one or two connected national reporters. Tom Verducci is one of them, and Rosenthal is the other. Both are now employed by the MLB Network.

In other Rosenthal news, be sure to Twitter him questions during the All Star Game. The reporter will be answering them during his time in St. Louis.

Trent Green Takes Over MMQB, For Vacationing Peter King

Trent Green recently retired, and while he seems to still seems to be getting used to life without Football, the former NFL qb might have found a new career. Green is filling in for the vacationing Peter King, and decided to write about Mike Vick, the NFL schedule, Brett Favre....and of course....the "10 things he thinks he thinks". Here are some highlights....

2) I think I'm going crazy because I feel like we've been talking about Brett Favre and his retirement since the new millennium. You want to play, Brett? I hope you do. I've always enjoyed watching you play. But please decide by the start of training camp.

6) I think, actually I know, that Mark Brunell is the last quarterback standing from the 1993 draft class. He's outlasted Drew Bledsoe (No. 1 overall), Rick Mirer (No. 2), Billy Joe Hobert (No. 58), Gino Toretta (No. 192), Alex Van Pelt (No. 216), Elvis Grbac (No. 219) and me (No. 222). Keep going, Mark! I'll be pulling for you.

8) I think that brings me to ticket prices. Where are the family seats at most stadiums now? Teams need to realize they are pricing out a huge part of their fan base. DirecTV is great and watching games in high definition is amazing. But absolutely nothing can beat watching a game live. The atmosphere, the grill smells, the people all dressed in team apparel, the elements, the live sound of a good tackle, 80,000 people all cheering at the same time -- you can't replicate the experience. I'd like to see all owners set aside a few sections for reasonably-priced seating so parents can afford to take their kids.

10) I think I hope Peter King has a great vacation. Thank you for allowing me this opportunity.
Okay that last one was a bit cheesy, but I think Trent Green may have a future in the writing business. Apparently those concussions haven't had THAT much of a lasting affect on him. In fact, Peter King may have just been Wally Pipp'd! Oh and who knew Mark Brunell was still in the League? That my friends is insight!!!

What it's really like to retire and how NFL should handle concussions (SI)

Who Needs Stephen A. At The Draft To Have A Good Time?

Hearing the news that Stephen A. Smith was let go by ESPN must have hit the "SAS Society of Heckling Gentlemen" extremely hard, but that didn't stop them from having fun at the 2009 Draft. Get your Cheez Doodlez ready, and enjoy the latest installment from the "SASSoHG"! Via Rockin' Steady....

The Alanis song just put that one over the top. Too funny. It's also good to see that I wasn't the only person who found that Draft extremely boring. And always remember...."When life gives you Stephen A., make StephenAde."

Stephen A. Smith Heckled at the 2009 NBA Draft: The Final Chapter (Rockin Steady)

On The Heels Of The Confed Cup Finals, Alexi Lalas Talks US Soccer

Everyone was all a buzz yesterday during the Confederation Cup finale on ESPN, and while the U.S. choked away a 2-0 lead, the team did it's job by getting people excited about a possible World Cup run in 2010. One of the more opinionated people throughout the tournament was ex-player Alexi Lalas, and he sat down "On the DL" to talk about what it all means....

“It’s unrealistic, and unfair to a certain extent, for a team to do well in a couple of games – and very well against some very, very good teams – and then automatically say that we can win a World Cup.

“We can win a World Cup, but the reality is, tomorrow we can go out and play Spain and lose 5-0. Tomorrow we can go out and play Brazil and lose 5-0. On the day, the team was better than Spain, and that’s what’s the most important. But you also had an incredible perfect storm to get the team to that point. You can’t count on that happening in a World Cup.”

And what, as American soccer fans, and those who hopped on board this weekend to ride the recent success of the United States’ team, should we take from the Confederations Cup?

“I think the best part of this whole thing, in terms of the Confederations Cup, is that we’ve finally seen a positive message sent to not just US Soccer fans, but sports fans in general that even are coming to it late, that this is a team that when playing against the best, can bring a heart and a spirit. For a while, we weren’t quite sure.
While that's obviously the right way to look at things, unfortunately Americans just don't think that way. Even Lalas himself said earlier in the interview, that people in this country want things "right away". Soccer is just setup so different than what the average American is used when it comes to Sports, and patience isn't one of our stronger suits.

After all of the hype this run garnered, we still have to wait a year for the World Cup, and unfortunately if the U.S. Men perform like they did last go around....the Sport won't really be talked about for another four years. That isn't to take anything away from the performance of this team at all. But rather just the way things are, and always will be, when it comes to Soccer.

On the DL Podcast - Episode 199 (On the DL)

Posted by Awful Announcing at 11:21 AM 2 Comments Links to this post

Paul Maguire To Have A Reduced Role This College Football Season

Paul Maguire is certainly one of the elder statesmen in College Football, and at 70 years old, he's not getting any younger. Well according to USA Today, the ABC announcer will be get a bit of a break next College Football season. Not only will Maguire have a reduced slate of games, but he will be appearing on some studio shows as well....

Although not formally announced, ESPN's Mike Soltys confirmed Sunday that college football analyst Paul Maguire, 70, will have a "reduced role" this season. Rather than having a full slate of games, says Soltys, Maguire will work only "the occasional game and do some studio shows and radio."

Maguire goes pretty far back in the sport. He played tight end at The Citadel and led the nation in touchdown receptions — in 1959. After being a linebacker and punter in the old American Football League, Maguire worked for NBC before becoming ESPN's original college football lead analyst in 1979 and in 1984 began working ESPN's first live college football — after a U.S. Supreme Court decision had loosened the NCAA's control of TV rights, which let ESPN get live games.

Maguire returned to NBC and, as part of its lead NFL teams, called Super Bowl action. But after NBC lost NFL TV rights in 1998, he returned to ESPN for its Sunday night NFL games. In recent seasons, he's worked ESPN college games with Bob Griese and Brad Nessler in three-man on-air teams that included Maguire being stationed in TV production trucks and on carts that rolled along sidelines while covering games.
I personally think Maguire has lost a step or two over the years, but he always makes the games interesting. Especially when he's talking about drinking during a 10-7 BC-NC State barn burner. Hopefully this new schedule will work out for him, and we can joke about that silly cherry picker he rides on the sidelines again.

Maguire will take reduced role in ESPN college football coverage (USA Today)

A Look Inside The NFL Broadcasting Boot Camp

Every year the NFL holds a training camp for players that want a crash course in broadcasting, and this year is no different. Names like Renaldo Wynn, Kyle Brady and JJ Stokes, are all going through the course, and the Washington Post got an unprecedented look inside the camp recently. Here is video of the players getting tips from the likes of Curt Menefee, Solomon Wilcots, Brian Baldinger and Ron Jaworski....

Great clip there. The biggest issue the attendees seem to have, is how they can bash former teammates and coaches, while still being able to be seen at future NFL functions. Obviously this is the most difficult part of the broadcasting game, but players just need to look at it the same way they look at trades, while still in the league. The quote, "it's just business," should be recited a hell of a lot more than it currently is.

Tackling TV After Football (Washington Post)

2009 NBA Draft Live-Blog

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Well here we are folks. It's one of the most enjoyable nights of the year and it's become a fun tradition here at AA. There will be photos, videos, analysis and fun all evening long, so comment early and comment often. We'll get underway around 7pm but in the meantime feel free to click through last year's live blogs, and leave your predictions in the comments.

NBA Draft Live-Blog 2008
NBA Draft Live-Blog 2007

Okay all, I'm here and ready to go. Was just checking out all the MJ news, and the support in LA is amazing. Whether or not you believed the allegations against him or not, there wasn't a person in the world who wasn't touched by his music at some point or another.

With that said, what's the over/under on the number of minutes before ESPN tries a tribute piece?

"I believe it's a very deep draft!"- Dick Vitale

You hear that Bilas? Vitale is trying to best you for biggest over-statement of the Draft! Don't take that nonsense!!! David Stern is kicking this thing off with his cheesy "hard work" speech and we're underway!

"It's a very rowdy group tonight."- David Stern

YES! Thank goodness something in this Draft will be entertaining. DANNY MANNING, CLAP CLAP CLAPCLAPCLAP!!! Clippers on the clock.

"Clippers frantically looking over their notes to see if they should take Griffin or a new prospect they just discovered, Patrick Chewing." (Via Lammy)

Hahahaha. Too funny.

1. Blake Griffin
PF, 6'10", 248 lbs

You think the Clippers could have gotten Griffin to wear red or something. That purple is a little nasty. Oh and the Clippers Draft Room is clapping for themselves. Really? REALLY?!?! That took a lot of thought. Oh and eff you Clippers for wasting five minutes of our lives!

"Mark Jones is just a horrible host. He used to be good but he has gone off the cheesy end." (Via SS Reporters)

Ain't that the truth! ESPN now scores an interview with Bill Simmons' new nemesis, Mike Dunleavy. Who ironically is the only GM-Coach combo in the NBA.

2. Hasheem Thabeet
C, 7'3", 267lbs.

"Did the Commissioner just say Tanzania? Yes he did!"- Stuart Scott

Ugh. Stuart Scott just broke the annoying sound barrier. This could be a worse pick than Kandi Man. He's just too slow for the NBA. Basketball has been berry berry good to Hasheem!

"They took Brian, Russel Westbrook"- Mark Jackson

3. James Harden
SG, 6'5", 222lbs.
Arizona State

I love the Mark Jackson assessments down the bottom....Sacramento "Need a Point Guard"

Harden is another person I predict as a bust in the NBA, but I like the kid, so I hope he proves me wrong. If the Kings don't take Rubio, they deserve to have the most lottery balls for their existence.

"His shorts are going to be a lot lower than Byron Scott's." - Stu Scott (Via SS)


4. Tyreke Evans
SG, 6'5", 220lbs.

"He's got size, he's got amazing length."- Jay Bilas

And now we watch Ricky Rubio fall to New York, the only team that can pay his fee. Damn, the Wiz could have had Jason Williams 2.0!

5. Ricky Rubio
PG, 6'5", 180lbs.

There's not a chance in hell that Rubio weighs 180lbs, ESPN! Oh and the Knicks fans chiming in with the USA chants was priceless. If the Timberwolves select Stephen Curry next, I'm going to lose it. Hey, a Fran Fraschilla sighting! Drink!!!

"He's got a Gretzky like feel for the game of basketball."- Fran Frashcilla

"Oh THATS where Spain is? Thanks ESPN." (Via Lammy)

Great use of the World Map, ESPN. And Jemele Hill's tweet comparing Rubio to Balky from Perfect Strangers was priceless.

6. Johnny Flynn
PG, 6'1", 196lbs.

Wow. Didn't think they would pick two point guards, especially playing in the West. Johnny Flynn is going to be a good NBA player.....when he gets traded away from Minnesota. If anyone can get me that ESPN puzzle piece in front of Mark Jones, I will pay them top dollar. I want to hang that above my fireplace.

"He's got one of the best smiles in this Draft class"- Mark Jones

Great analysis there.

7. Stephen Curry
PG, 6'3", 181lbs.

"I didn't realize there were so many fans who hated the Golden State Warriors."- Stu Scott

I know the Knicks fans are booing now, but TRUST ME....this is for the best. Pick DeMar DeRozan and love watching him dominate over the next few years. Oh and get this little rumor....Rubio is heading to the Knicks. So just relax.

"He's got real good maturity."- Jay Bilas (Via 49er16)


8. Jordan Hill
PF, 6'10", 232lbs.


That shows you how much Knicks fans know about Basketball. I think DeRozan would have been the better pick since they already have David Lee, but Hill is a beast. Good pick, but he might be traded to Minnesota soon.

Is it just me or does Donnie Walsh look like he's in the mob?

9. DeMar DeRozan
G, 6'6", 211lbs.

Hello Tracy McGrady 2.0! Great pick for the Raptors there. Wait, did DeMar just use the word "defensicality"? Jay Bilas would like a word with you!!!

"People leaving draft in droves. Only in NY. Come to boo and leave." (Via Darren Rovell on Twitter)

Thanks for the infomercial on the public transportation, Mark Jones. Signed, Toronto (Via 49er16)

10. Brandon Jennings
PG, 6'2", 165lbs.

Well I guess you can now say averaging 4.0ppg in Europe will help your draft status. Sorry David Stern.

"He's got a chance to be very very good."- Jay Bilas

Ummm....can't you say that about everybody in the Draft?

"He didn't go to Europe to improve his draft status! He went to Europe to GET PAID." (Via Free Darko on Twitter)

Good point. And now he gets to go to Milwaukee. Screw Italy....Milwaukee is where it's at!!!!


11. Terrence Williams
SG, 6'6", 212lbs.

"Terrence Williams says he doesn't watch ESPN...."- Stu Scott

Guess who's my new favorite player! Lebron and Williams in 2010!!!

"Shout out to Jay Bilas. He's a great guy, even though he went to Duke."- Terrence Williams

And now it's time to watch Michael Jordan botch a draft pick! Who's ready for Tyler Hansbrough!!!!

12. Gerald Henderson
SG, 6'5", 215lbs.

I'd just love it if one year the Bobcats would draft out of state.

Of course Jay Bilas loves Henderson. Bilas proabably thinks he should have been the first pick. (Via 49er16)

Henderson is one of only a few players Jordan actually saw for Charlotte. Can't believe he made this pick without doing any leg work. (Via TheJonLee on Twitter)

13. Tyler Hansbrough
PF, 6'10", 234lbs.

And the Knicks fans are right on queue with the chant of OVER-RATED!!! Is anybody completely bored with the Draft at this point?

"It's okay if you want to stay all four years."- Jeff Van Gundy

Well not normally, but okay. Tyler already has the standard/boring answers down pat. 110% Baby!!!!!! Where's Dickie V???

There are going to be tons of mormons rioting in the streets of Salt Lake tonight because Hansbrough didn't go to the Jazz. (Via Lammy)

14. Earl Clark
SF, 6'10", 226lbs.

Oh my god!!!! That's Brandon Jennings music!!!!!!!!!!!!!! What a random appearance. Oh and Jay Bilas....STOP SAYING THE WORD "LENGTH"!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

No one even cares about the great pick of Earl Clark because Jennings now gets to talk about his decisions. Good times, and that's the end of the lottery.

15. Austin Daye
SF, 6'11, 192lbs.

Length, Length, Length, Length, Wingspan....Tayshaun Prince clone....yada yada yada. Next pick please.

Surprise! Dickie V likes the picks of Hansbrough and Curry, and he even says Curry will be the ROY next year. Ugh.

"Daye makes Prince look like the Hulk."- Jeff Van Gundy

16. James Johnson
PF, 6'8", 258lbs.
Wake Forest

Not a bad pick there at all. A big man that can shoot is what you need in the league, and with Deng hurt all the time....Johnson might be able to step in right away.

It's time for ESPN to lose the draft rights and put it on Versus or something. I'm tired of these bozos managing to screw up every draft by the verbal diaharrea they spew out. (Via SS)

Yeah, this is pretty damn boring and pointless.

17. Jrue Holiday
G, 6'4", 199lbs.

Yawn....Minnesota is getting ready to select another Point Guard, so let's brace ourselves!

Nice wide tie Jrue where did he pick that thing up, 1985? (Via Lammy)

18. Ty Lawson (Traded to Denver)
PG, 6'1", 199lbs.

Ummm....when did the Timberwolves become the Lions??? There's no doubt that Rubio is heading to NYC, right? Oh wait....Ty Lawson is going to Denver apparently.

wanna bet that last Minny pick was part of a trade ??? anyone ? (Via Mark Cuban on Twitter)

"You can't play everyone." - JVG (Via JFein)


19. Jeff Teague
G, 6'1", 175lbs.
Wake Forest

Worst defender in the draft. Terrible pick of Teague by the Hawks, who just traded for Jamal Crawford. Just a terrible pick. Got a dollar says the Jazz pick BJ Mullens....

20. Eric Maynor
PG, 6'3", 164lbs.

Wow. Interesting pick since they already have Deron Williams in the backcourt. They could send Brewer to the three though, and have a two guard lineup. Intriguing.

Great....a Larry Brown interview. And thank you Knicks fans for once again booing on queue.

21. Darren Collison
PG, 6'1", 166lbs.

Yes! We have our first player who wasn't invited to the Draft making his way through the fans!!! Always the best move at the Draft. Nothing like having hostile New York fans throwing stuff at you as you surprise David Stern on stage. Good times.

Seriously, how do the Hornets take this guy ahead of Blair? You can get a reliable 10-minute backup PG for $1M this summer. (Via John Hollinger on Twitter)

I don't know about that one. I like the backup point guard move at this point. Plus I want Blair to slip to the Wiz at the top of round two.

22. Victor Claver
F, 6'9", 224lbs.

Forget the Portland foreigner....Shaq is talking about Mike Jackson! Couldn't ESPN have done better than a conference call with Lisa Salters!?!?!?! Stop talking over the Diesel, woman!!! Worst. Interview. Ever.

Shaq says "I've always been a team player." Somwhere Kobe is laughing out loud. (Via Skip Bayless on Twitter)

23. Omri Casspi
F, 6'9", 211lbs.

The fact that someone was holding up a "Jordan" jersey in front of all the Israeli flags in the stands. MIDDLE EAST REPRESENT!!!!

"They better have good flafel in Sacramento!"- Fran Fraschilla

24. BJ Mullens (To OKC for Rodrigue Beaubois)
7'1", 258lbs.
Ohio State

Wow....Mark Cuban has been focusing all of his attention on bloggers, and not on the Draft. When have the Mavericks ever had a real center on their team? Answer....never.

25. Rodrigue Beaubois (To Dallas for BJ Mullens)
G, 6'2", 182lbs.


Oh wait.....the two teams drafting in back of each other just traded the last two picks. Why does the draft suck so bad now?

26. Taj Gibson
PF, 6'9", 214lbs.
USC's commercial time. No more commentary for the rest of the night from ESPN.

27. DeMarre Carroll
F, 6'7", 207lbs.

"Here's a guy who has a liver disease"- Stuart Scott

Must Improve: Drinking Tolerance

28. Wayne Ellington
G, 6'5", 202lbs.

I finally agree with Jay Bilas. I think Ellington will be a better pro than Henderson, but there's a problem. What do you do with Corey Brewer and Rodney Carney?

***Knicks trade Quentin Richardson to Memphis for Darko***

Sure....why not?!?!?!

29. Toney Douglas
G, 6'2", 183lbs.

Not a bad pick at all for the Knicks. But now the Cavs get DeJaun Blair, and the Wizards will never beat them in a Playoff Series.

30. Christian Eyenga

"With the 30th and the final pick in the 2009 NBA Draft, the Cleveland Cavaliers select...."

Even Stern doesn't want this to go to a second round.

Christian Eyenga: 0.8 PPG. Stat of the night. (Via Dan Shanoff on Twitter)

That's it for me tonight. Just don't have it in me to stick with this for a whole second round full of foreign players. Thanks for joining in, and I'll have some quotes and videos tomorrow. I'll be on Twitter @, so we can all continue this party there if you'd like.

Buck And McCarver To Host An FX Movie Fest

You know those weekend movie blocks, which usually feature a couple of comedians promoting their latest crappy movie? Well FX has come up with the ingenious idea to have the FOX team of Joe Buck and Tim McCarver host one of their very own! The duo will be hosting a set of movies that will air on the FOX network before the All Star Game on Sunday, July 12th. From the WSJ via Sportress of Blogitude....

Fox Sports spokesman Lou D'Ermilio confirmed network executives will head to Milwaukee next week to strategize with Commissioner Bud Selig about reversing the downward trends. "The purpose of the meeting is to find a way to boost the ratings for the All-Star Game and the World Series," he said. Plans include showing baseball movies on Sunday afternoons on Fox's sister channel FX, and promotional ads with broadcasters Joe Buck and Tim McCarver. Fox says it is less concerned with the shrinking Saturday audience, since the regular season games represent about 10% of the value of the $255 million annual rights fee the network pays.
I guess it's as good an idea as any when it comes to promoting the dreadful All-Star Game, but I'm for one going to be tuning that one out. Actually I take that back....with a lineup like Mr. 3000, Fever Pitch and The Benchwarmers....I'm 100% in!!!

Baseball Mired in a Mysterious Ratings Slump (Wall Street Journal)
Who Are The Ad Wizards Who Came Up With This One? Buck And McCarver To Host A Movie Marathon On FX (Sportress of Blogitude)
Buck and McCarver to host All-Star movie marathon (Sports Media Watch)

Tony Siragusa To Be An Internet Star

I know Fox Sports has tried to revamp their website multiple times, but for some reason it never works. The layout looks too 80s, the scores update really slow and there's little to no video. Well Fox is going to try and change that yet again, and in the process they're going to make Tony Siragusa an Internet superstar! Via Media Week....

While most of Hill’s ideas are currently in the development stage, he is already touting one show he wants to produce for, involving former NFL star Tony Siragusa, who is a sideline reporter on Fox’s Sunday NFL telecasts. A 12-year NFL veteran, Siragusa, nicknamed “The Goose,” has the type of boisterous personality that Hill thinks will stir up football fans. “Tony Siragusa will become an Internet star,” predicts Hill.

But Siragusa is not the only on-air personality Hill wants in heavy rotation on “We have some good people floating around here,” he says. “There are no rules for the Internet. The possibilities are endless.”

Hill is pondering the production of an online show with his Fox NFL Sunday studio team of Howie Long, Terry Bradshaw and Jimmy Johnson. “Their preproduction meetings could be taped and shown,” Hill says. “They are hilarious.”

He could also team up on-air commentator Daryl Johnson, a former Dallas Cowboys running back, nicknamed Moose, with Siragusa the Goose. And Hill says former Baltimore Ravens coach Brian Billick, currently a commentator on Fox Sports game telecasts, is also in his sights to do some type of show online (even though Billick does not have a nickname ending in “oose”). currently offers about four hours of original video per day, a scale that Hill hopes to dramatically expand.

Once his on-air talent is entrenched on the FoxSports site, Hill plans to slot promotional spots on each of the Fox Sports TV telecasts to alert viewers of the online programming and drive them to the site. Hill says he hopes to also beef up the fantasy sports area and “down the road” wants to offer more video coverage of sports at every level, including high school.
The "Hill" that the article is referring to the same one that brought you all of the band shots during Fox's Bowl coverage, so I don't know if these are good ideas or not. Siragusa is certainly entertaining, but I'm not sure if people will take time out of their day to watch him on an Internet television show.

Fox Sports Rushes the Web (Media Week)

Don't Be Trying To Beat The NBA To The Punch Tonight, You Tweeting Teams

The NBA Draft is tonight as you know (and yes there will be a third annual live-blog), and teams are thinking of various ways to let the public know of their picks as they come in. Well according to Sports Business Daily, one the ways that won't be allowed however, is tweeting.

The NBA has notified its teams to not disclose on Twitter picks made in tonight’s Draft before they are announced on stage. The league has traditionally prohibited teams from using any sort of local or club media outlet, particularly digital forums such as an official Web site, from tipping off their selections in advance. A notice recently sent to clubs reminding them of that provision was expanded to include the wildly popular microblogging service. Several picks in the NFL Draft in April were leaked out by clubs to their Twitter followers.

The NBA, meanwhile, plans an extensive rollout of social networking-based content for the Draft, focusing primarily on behind-the-scenes content such as candid photos, offbeat interviews with draft selections and other similar material. Extensive sharing of content is also planned between the league’s feeds on Facebook and Twitter and those of the individual teams. “The guiding idea is to use social media and be complementary to what’s happening on ESPN, on, and so forth,” said NBA Dir of Marketing Dan Opallo. “We’re not using Twitter, for example, to simply tweet pick by pick. That’s not what this is about for us. We want to supplement that traditional coverage and get into some additional places where fans haven’t been.”
Considering that every player, and NBA exec is already on Twitter, it seems like a bad move for the NBA to use the social networking platform. Also, it doesn't really seem like a big deal to me, as long as teams what until the selection is announced on ESPN, but whatever works for the NBA.

NBA Warns Teams Not To Announce Draft Picks On Twitter (Sports Business Daily - $)

Ball Girl Gets Ran Over At Wimbeldon

It's amazing that ball girls and boys don't get hit more often, but at least we have this clip to get us by until it happens again. Michael Llodra was playing Tommy Haas at Wimbeldon yesterday, and while chasing down a shot, careened into a ball girl on the sideline. Take a look....

My favorite part was not the hit, that was actually pretty scary, but rather the announcer saying, "I hope he's okay!" Yeah that's it, forget the little girl who just got plowed over. Too funny.

Your 2009 ESPY Award Nominees Have Been Announced

Well that time of year is upon. Yes, the 2009 ESPY Awards are here, and will air Sunday, July 19th at 9pm, with Samuel L. Jackson as your host. And get this....there are a whopping 37 categories this year! The voting has begun so be sure to cast your vote for some of these nominees....


Kobe Bryant, NBA
LeBron James, NBA
Jimmie Johnson, Auto Racing
Michael Phelps, Swimming


Natalie Coughlin, Swimming
Nastia Liukin, Gymnastics
Maya Moore, NCAA Basketball
Candace Parker, WNBA
Serena Williams, Tennis


Kobe Bryant, Los Angeles Lakers
Cole Hamels, Philadelphia Phillies
Michael Phelps, Olympic Swimming
Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh, Olympic Beach Volleyball


Shawn Johnson, Olympic Gymnastics
Evan Longoria, Tampa Bay Rays
Derrick Rose, Chicago Bulls
Matt Ryan, Atlanta Falcons


Usain Bolt, Olympic Sprinter
Larry Fitzgerald, Arizona Cardinals
Phil Jackson, Los Angeles Lakers
Michael Phelps, Olympic Swimmer


Mine That Bird wins the Kentucky Derby
Oregon State stuns then #1 USC
Tampa Bay Rays win the American League Championship Series
US Soccer shocks Spain in the Confederations Cup semifinals


Federer vs. Nadal in the 2008 Wimbledon Final
Steelers vs. Cardinals in Super Bowl XLIII
Syracuse vs. Connecticut in the Big East Tournament Quarterfinals


Florida’s Tim Tebow’s speech
Helio Castroneves wins the Indy 500
US swim team wins thrilling finish in Olympic relay


Ovechkin vs. Rangers
Pacquiao KO’s Hatton
Roethlisberger to Holmes Super Bowl Winning TD
Texas Tech’s Michael Crabtree makes game-winning catch vs. Texas


Connecticut Women’s Basketball
Los Angeles Lakers
North Carolina Men’s Basketball
Philadelphia Phillies
Pittsburgh Penguins
Pittsburgh Steelers

Shaq Learns He's Traded Via Twitter

I know some people are staunchly again Twitter, but the social networking site continues to amaze everyday. Natural disasters, breakups and the Hudson River plane crash were all found out first through Twitter. Well, now you can add an NBA trade with on of the best centers of all time. Shaquille O'Neal was dealt to Cleveland for a draft pick and a few players, and he learned so through a tweet. Via Stock Lemon....

Just unreal. Oh I'm not talking about the Twitter thing anymore. It's amazing that Shaq got traded for Ben Wallace, Sasha Pavlovic and the 46th pick in tomorrow's draft.

Shaq Finds Out He's Traded Through Twitter (Stock Lemon)

The U.S. Stuns Spain In Confed Semis

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

I, and millions of people, gave the United States zero chance against Spain today. Well thanks to an early goal by Jozy Altidore, and some great defense in the second half, the United States ended Spain's fifteen game win streak with a 2-0 win. Here are your highlights....

How David Villa didn't score seven goals today is beyond me, but we'll take it for sure. Great play by Onyewu and Howard, and the Americans' dream run will continue on this Sunday in the Finals, versus the winner of Brazil and South Africa.

Artie Lange Goes On Michael Irvin's Show, Hints At Return To Joe Buck Live

It's been well over two weeks since Artie Lange's tirade on "Joe Buck Live", and the story just will not die. Lange went on Michael Irvin's radio show today in what was supposed to be a discussion about the program, but quickly turned into another awkward appearance for the Stern sidekick. Not only did Artie Lange defend himself , but he also challenged Irvin's co-host to a fight at one point, and bragged about book sales following the show. Oh and there was this moment, in which Irvin brough up the news that Lange might be going back on the show. Here is some of the audio via SRI....

I think we all know that Lange is going to be on the second show, black-listed from HBO or not, and that Buck will be making the right move by doing so. In its first airing, JBL almost tripled the ratings of the final "Costas Now" show, and a return visit from Lange would certainly improve on that. Who cares if Joe Buck is uncomfortable? HBO is in the business of making money, and that's how they're going to get people to tune in.

Artie Lange Talks To Michael Irvin About His Appearance on Joe Buck Live (Sports Radio Interviews)

Tony Kornheiser Had To Endure Baldinger Like The Rest Of Us

I said this last year, and I'll say it again. The Monday Night Football broadcast last season wasn't all that bad. Sure it had its moments, and Tony Kornheiser still didn't belong in the booth, but it wasn't the worst combination of announcers in the NFL. With that said, Tony Kornheiser is continuing his quest to make you think that he did belong today, and now he's using comparisons to other NFL analysts to prove his point. Via TSB....

"And this was great to hear, because I think most of the criticism is from people who don’t play themselves but who insist that football be mystified. Everything else has to be demystified in life, except football. These dopes want it mystified, and they want nothing but third-level and fourth-level Xs and OS. Which, if anybody has ever been around a football game--you don’t have to have played it--you know right away that it’s impossible to know. Because there are 22 moving parts. Nobody knows exactly what’s going on until they indeed look at the film. So to find out that people liked my work was very, very good for me."

"Last year, that was a really good football broadcast," he said. "It was really good. Jaworski and I have obvious rapport, that’s just obvious to anybody who paid attention to the show. And I really REALLY liked the show last year, and thought it was as good as ANY football game being broadcast, and believe me, I watched them all. I had to suffer through Brian Baldinger just like everybody else did."
While I'd like to disagree with him, he's actually close to being right this time. I wouldn't call it a "really good football broadcast", but it certainly wasn't the worst. The trio improved immensely from year two to three, and while I still think Tony wasn't the man for the job, he did the best with his abilities. And yes, I think we can all agree Brian Balldinger is god awful.

Kornheiser Feels the Love After Leaving MNF (The Sporting Blog)

Chris Wheeler's Freudian Slip

The brain is a funny little organ. Most of the time, it keeps you out of trouble, but occasionally it fails you. That's exactly what happened to Phillies' announcer, Chris Wheeler last night in the bottom of the ninth last night. Check it out....

Oh that sure was a great song! That along with "Jailhouse Cock", and "Jingle Bell Cock", were my favorites!!! Too funny.

Who Knew There Was A Worse Sport Out There, Than T.O.?

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

There were clips floating around the Internet last week, of Terrell Owens' teammate flipping out on him during the debut of "The Superstars" on ABC. Well the show debuted tonight, and not only is the extended version of Joanna Krupa giving it T.O. hilarious, it also proves that karma is a bitch....

It's not like Terrell wasn't trying, his big feet just got caught up in the ropes. In an earlier challenge, Owens carried Krupp in a race that only one teammate could ride a bike. T.O. ran just about the entire way. Oh well, I guess it's good for the Bills that he was the first athlete to be eliminated.

As far as the show itself, it's actually pretty entertaining. John Saunders is the host, with Warren Sapp and Jenn Brown your reporters. It's definitely worth a watch. What else are you going to check out? "I'm A Celebrity, Get Me Out Of Here"???

Update: Thanks to Warren Sapp's Twitter Feed, we now have the unedited version! Careful though....very NSFW....

Everything You Need To Know About ESPN's Coverage Of The 2009 NBA Draft

Monday, June 22, 2009

Every year, I post this little rundown of ESPN's Draft plans, and every year the number of people covering the event grows by four or five. We know that they've lost one person this year, in Stephen A. Smith (frowny face), so who are they going to replace him with? Well the answer is actually nobody. In fact, there are only going to be eleven ESPNers covering the event this year. Here's the list....

Main Stage: Stuart Scott, Jay Bilas, Mark Jackson, Jeff Van Gundy
Other Analysts: Fran Fraschilla, Dick Vitale
On-site Reporters: Ric Bucher, Andy Katz
Green Room Interviewers: Mark Jones, Lisa Salters, Rachel Nichols

Pretty obvious group there, but I'm surprised that neither Jon Barry, Magic Johnson or Michael Wilbon, is involved. But why would you need the majority of your studio team at the Draft? Other than that, it's going to be your pretty standard ESPN Draft production. You'll still have the crawl going during commercials, Bilas' "Best Available, Fran Fraschilla on the International prospects and video conferencing with fifteen NBA teams (Charlotte, Chicago, Cleveland, Dallas, Denver, Detroit, Indiana, Los Angeles Clippers, L.A. Lakers, Memphis, Minnesota, New Jersey, Phoenix, Portland and Washington). Oh and here's your early look at the intro for this year as well....