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Michael Kay, Don La Greca Talk Dangers Of Hot Mics

“Now, you’re altering everyone to the fact that the Yankees are on right now and [that] it’s a close game. You might be losing some viewers because the Met game – I wouldn’t say it was a blowout – but it seemed like it was at hand.”

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A customary feature of the SNY broadcast is the “game break,” a brief 15 to 20 second pause in the action where Gary Cohen throws to a studio anchor who gives the latest out-of-town scores and news. During Thursday’s Mets game against the San Francisco Giants, Cohen threw to Sal Licata, who proceeded to show highlights of the Yankees game against the Detroit Tigers. Unbeknownst to Cohen, his microphone remained on through the game feed being presented on the new SNY mobile app, and about ten seconds in the “game break,” viewers heard Cohen say: “Why are we showing Yankee highlights?”

On Thursday, The Michael Kay Show on 98.7 ESPN New York spoke about Cohen’s remark, and rather than simply assuming the statement came out of his fandom for the Mets, a team he grew up rooting for, co-host Michael Kay believed the statement came more out of a cognizance towards the business of live television.

“The Yankees are on opposite you,” said Kay, who serves as the play-by-play voice of the Yankees on the YES Network. “Now, you’re altering everyone to the fact that the Yankees are on right now and [that] it’s a close game. You might be losing some viewers because the Met game – I wouldn’t say it was a blowout – but it seemed like it was at hand.”

Don La Greca disagreed.

“I’m a big fan of Gary. He’s terrific,” said La Greca. “He was Met Boy. If I had to guess, that’s Gary saying, ‘I’m a Met guy. Met broadcast. Why are we showing Yankee highlights?’”

While La Greca believes part of the blame for Cohen’s remark going over-the-air was a lapse by the producers at SNY, mistakes are expected to happen especially with the nature of a live broadcast. Hot mic incidents have cost broadcasters their jobs and future broadcasting opportunities, including former Cincinnati Reds play-by-play announcer Thom Brennaman, who was cited by Kay as someone who may never recover from his incident.

With the potential for these incidents to occur to anyone not remaining aware of the power the microphone yields to the person behind it, Kay offered a salient piece of advice for aspiring broadcasters looking to make a career in sports media.

“If you have a mic near your face, you have to believe that it’s on, even if it’s not, even if it’s not,” said Kay. “Number one: There could be somebody in the truck that hates your guts and would like nothing better than to expose you. Number two: There are technical sanfus when they think they’ve turned down the mic and it’s not. Don’t say anything when you have a mic near your face!”

La Greca knows that if Kay was heard on a Yankees broadcast questioning why his network was showing highlights from a Mets game, he would receive much negative publicity and draw the chagrin of Mets fans – likely to an extreme degree.

“Oh my goodness,” said Kay in response to La Greca’s assertion. “Met fans would be waiting to lynch me…. They might start another paper just to write about me.”

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Damon Amendolara: Why Does Tom Brady Want To Call Games?

“I was just always convinced Tom Brady had bigger fish to fry than calling Cowboys, Commanders on Thanksgiving.”

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Tom Brady

Tom Brady is headed to FOX. According to Damon Amendolara, there is no question who is getting the better end of that deal.

The network’s interest in Brady has been well-known for months. Still, CBS Sports Radio’s morning man cannot believe it is actually happening. He said Tuesday morning that he can’t understand why Brady would want to pursue a media career after his playign days end.

“I was just always convinced Tom Brady had bigger fish to fry than calling Cowboys, Commanders on Thanksgiving,” Amendolara said. “I just always felt like Brady’s post-playing career was going to be pushing nutrition, pushing TB12 brand, pushing his apparel brand and doing kind of elite media work.”

A media career for Tom Brady is something Amendolara said he assumed would happen off-camera. He pointed to the Religion of Sport production studio Brady co-owns as an example of what he would expect Brady to want to be involved in.

Broadcasters work more Sundays during the NFL season than players do. No matter how good the games are, Damon Amendolara said that it is a grind he could not believe Tom Brady was willing to sign up for.

“They’ll get the number one games, but you still gotta do 17 or 18 of them before you get to the playoffs and not every one of them is a sizzler.”

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Ike Reese: ‘It’s Up To Us To Let Ray Didinger Stay Retired’

“I would imagine he’ll still watch a game still jotting down notes. There’s no way he’s gonna watch a game without doing his Ray Diddy thing.”

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Ray Didinger is feeling a lot of love from his WIP colleagues after announcing his retirement on Sunday. He will still be on the station through the end of the month, but on Monday, nearly the entire full-time air staff of the radio station was paying tribute to him.

Jon Marks and Ike Reese took time out of their afternoon drive show on Monday to replay Didinger’s announcement. Marks said that it was “as thoughtful as everything that he does.” He doesn’t doubt that Didinger is at peace with the decision.

Reese joked that it was good to hear PD Rod Lakin was not responsible for this. He also said that he was happy to hear that this was not a health-related retirement. According to the former Eagles linebacker though, that means it would be really easy for Didinger to want to abandon his plans if given the chance.

“We obviously know how much Ray Didinger means to us. And this WIP family, just like the Comcast Sports family I’m sure, is important to him,” Ike Reese said. “I’d imagine he would have a tough time saying no. That is why you leave it up to us to don’t bother him. Don’t put him in that position. Let him enjoy retirement.”

He knows that it will be hard for Didinger to not stay ready for a media appearance diuring the football season.

“I would imagine he’ll still watch a game still jotting down notes. There’s no way he’s gonna watch a game without doing his Ray Diddy thing.”

Both Marks and Reese said they hope that they would not hear from Didinger until at least the 2023 Eagles season and that Ray and his wife use that time to fully enjoy their new freedom.

Jon Marks reminded everyone that Ray Didinger is still an author with products to sell. If they really miss him, they can always go to a book signing.

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Mat Smith and Nate Jackson: ESPN Anger Over Nikola Jokic MVP ‘Is Garbage’

“He’s not as sexy as these other guys. But he does deserve the MVP, and shame on these guys to make it about them and their choices and their votes.”

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Denver Nuggets star Nikola Jokic has won the NBA MVP award for the second consecutive season. Jokic secured the award ahead of Philadelphia 76ers big man Joel Embiid.

ESPN NBA analysts Brian Windhorst and Tim Legler got the attention of Mat Smith and Nate Jackson on 104.3 The Fan in Denver Monday. Both Legler and Windhorst felt like Embiid was the MVP and sounded downright offended that he was not named the winner.

Legler said Embiid carried the Sixers and had a firm grip on the award from early February through the end of the regular season.

But Smith, who was filling in for Chad Brown on Monday, argued that the same things could be said for Jokic, adding that Jokic did more with less star power on the Nuggets roster. He didn’t understand how Embiid was Legler’s clear choice over Jokic.

“There’s so many different reasons why that specifically is garbage from Legler,” Smith said.

Jackson said Jokic is the Rodney Dangerfield of NBA players and made the point that it’s a continuation of a trend. For what ever reason, the national media overlooks the 27-year-old Serbian superstar.

“They don’t pay attention to it, they’re quick to write off this guy because they don’t appreciate his style of play,” he said. “He’s not as sexy as these other guys. But he does deserve the MVP, and shame on these guys to make it about them and their choices and their votes.”

Windhorst explained he went with Embiid based on what advanced statistics were saying. Smith said Windhorst basically laid out why Jokic was most deserving of MVP.

“He just gave every reason why Jokic should win and said, ‘Well I voted for Embiid, and I’m not taking it back,'” Smith said. He added that it was puzzling why so many voters were against Jokic. “These guys don’t like Joker. He’s not likable nationally, and why that is I’m not sure.”

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