The entertainment factor on Milwaukee Bucks telecasts is moving up several notches.
That much is clear after league sources indicated that former star forward Marques Johnson will be a key part of the telecast team and well-known Fox Sports announcer Gus Johnson also will have a role on Fox Sports Wisconsin telecasts during the 2015-’16 season.
Marques Johnson, who has been a lead college basketball analyst on Fox Sports for 15 years and a studio analyst for Los Angeles Lakers and Clippers broadcasts, will leave his home base in Los Angeles to do 55 Bucks telecasts this season.
Gus Johnson is scheduled for 20 games. Veteran play-by-play broadcaster Jim Paschke will be back for his 30th season, while former Buck Jon McGlocklin will work about 25 games.
Sidney Moncrief will not return as a color analyst on the telecasts but will continue to have a role with the club, a team spokesman said.
Marques Johnson said he is very excited to be coming back to the team for which he starred from 1977 through 1984. Johnson was a big part of some talented Bucks teams and averaged 21.0 points in his seven seasons in Milwaukee, the fourth-best mark in franchise history.
“It just felt right,” the 59-year-old Johnson said in a phone interview Monday night. “I feel like a prodigal son.”
Johnson has worked on a CBS morning talk radio show in Los Angeles for the past year and said he told his bosses, “This is the only situation I would have not stuck with the radio show.”
Even though both Johnsons have worked for Fox Sports, they have never worked together on a game call.
“I talked to Gus a couple weeks ago and he was really gung-ho about me doing it,” Marques said. “We’re looking to have a good time and provide some serious entertainment.”
Gus Johnson returns to call NBA action for the first time since 2010 after spending the last five years calling various sports for Fox networks, including soccer, college basketball, college football and boxing. He was the primary radio voice of the New York Knicks from 1994 to 2010 while working for the Madison Square Garden (MSG) network.
Marques Johnson said he knows a number of the Bucks players from covering them in their college days, including O.J. Mayo when he was at Southern Cal, Jerryd Bayless at Arizona and Khris Middleton at Texas A&M.
“This (Bucks) team reminds me of the green-and-growing Bucks when I was a rookie in 1977(-’78),” Johnson said. “We upset Phoenix in the first round (of the playoffs) and took David Thompson and Denver to seven (games) in the second round.”
The Bucks went on to win five division titles in Johnson’s seven years in Milwaukee.
“The vision of the ownership group (Wes Edens and Marc Lasry), everything is first-class,” Johnson said. “They’ve got some big plans.
“My main concern is I don’t break down and cry on that first broadcast. I’m afraid I’ll shed a tear; it will be so emotional.
“I’m tickled pink to be coming home.”
Credit to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel who originally published this article
Jason Barrett is the owner and operator of Barrett Sports Media. Prior to launching BSM he served as a sports radio programmer, launching brands such as 95.7 The Game in San Francisco and 101 ESPN in St. Louis. He has also produced national shows for ESPN Radio including GameNight and the Dan Patrick Show. You can find him on Twitter @SportsRadioPD or reach him by email at JBarrett@sportsradiopd.com.
Jeff Thurn To Exit ESPN Sioux Falls To Join ESPN Radio
“I get to stay here and do it from here. Who gets to radio from Sioux Falls on a national level?”
ESPN Sioux Falls host Jeff Thurn will depart the station for a new national position with ESPN Radio.
The host of Overtime from 11:00 AM-2:00 PM on ESPN Sioux Falls, Thurn has been with the station for more than a decade.
Thurn thanked executives at Results Radio — owner of ESPN Sioux Falls — as well as listeners and guests for being so supportive during his tenure with the show and station during a thread posted to Twitter.
Thurn joined ESPN Radio as a fill-in host in February of last year.
“I’m so pumped to get to go out there and do something on a national level,” Thurn told Dakota News Now last year. “I get to stay here and do it from here. Who gets to radio from Sioux Falls on a national level? I think it’s really cool just growing up here, having that opportunity, to now do that on ESPN Radio throughout 2022…that’s pretty cool for me personally.”
His final show on ESPN Sioux Falls will be on Friday, February 3rd.
Craig Carton: Adam Schefter Was Used By the Broncos
“Based on other stories that have come out — that we now know as a fact — he’s willing to be a mouthpiece for a team.”
Tuesday was a frenzy for NFL insiders as the Denver Broncos and Houston Texans nearly simultaneously announced the hiring of new head coaches, and WFAN host Craig Carton believes one NFL insider was used.
Reporting from NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport at 4:44 PM ET claimed the Broncos tried to hire DeMeco Ryans — who was hired by the Texans — at the last minute, but was rebuffed, and Denver hired Sean Payton instead.
ESPN’s Adam Schefter — in no uncertain terms — refuted the validity of that report at 4:55 PM ET.
Carton believes Schefter was used by the franchise to help with damage control.
“So here’s the deal: Adam Schefter — many, many years ago — used to write for The Denver Post, and he covered the Denver Broncos,” Carton said. “He is clearly — to his credit – getting his information directly from the Denver Broncos who figure that that story from Ian Rapoport — and it is — is somewhat embarrassing…the fact that it’s out there is a bad look.
“So they go to Schefter who, along with Rapoport — the two voices of record as insiders — and they say ‘Nonsense. Put out there that that’s nonsense’. Rapoport’s getting his information DeMeco or his agent, saying “Naw, naw, no. He had choices. He could have gone to Houston, he could have gone to Denver. Obviously, the Texans sweetened the deal’.”
“Schefter’s getting his info from the Broncos, who are doing damage control,” co-host Evan Roberts concurred.
“Schefter’s great at what he does, I’m not saying that he’s not,” Carton continued. “But based on other stories that have come out — that we now know as a fact — he’s willing to be a mouthpiece for a team — namely Washington — and again, he’s great at what he does. I wanna be clear at how I state this, he’s great at what he does, but it’s obvious that the Broncos are trying to spin this, and they’re using Schefter to spin it.”
Roberts added that the situation was similar to that of NBA Insiders Adrian Wojnarowski and Shams Charania, where Wojnarowski “speaks for front offices, where Shams gets his info from players and agents”.
K&C Masterpiece: Cowboys Could Add 30 Million More Viewers To Super Bowl
“The Cowboys in the Super Bowl against the Chiefs would’ve shattered all viewership ratings.”
The matchup in this year’s Super Bowl is set, and the game will undoubtedly be the most-viewed program on TV this year. But if the Dallas Cowboys were taking part in the game, it’s safe to say the ratings would be astronomical.
The Cowboys divisional playoff game against San Francisco drew 45.7 million viewers. It was the second-most watched divisional round contest on record.
The NFC championship between San Francisco and Philadelphia drew 47.5 million.
On 105.3 The Fan in Dallas, K&C Masterpiece host Kevin Hageland said had the Cowboys made it to Philly, the viewership would’ve been even better.
“I know the game sucked, but that just shows you, because the Cowboys were like almost 8 million above every other divisional game, this could’ve gotten to 58 (million),” Hageland said.
Kevin added that if Dallas had gone all the way, the audience tuning in would’ve easily eclipsed some of the highest-rated programs of all-time.
“The Cowboys in the Super Bowl against the Chiefs would’ve shattered all viewership ratings,” he said. “Even with the new system and so many people streaming and everything like that.”
Usually the Super Bowl averages around 100 million viewers. Hageland said a Cowboys Super Bowl appearance in this day and age would’ve set the new top ratings mark for years to come.
“My estimation would be you would add approximately an extra 30 million people,” he said.
Jordan Bondurant is a features reporter for Barrett Sports Media. He works full-time as a multimedia specialist at the Virginia State Corporation Commission, while also putting in part-time work for News Radio WRVA and 910 The Fan in Richmond. Additionally, you can find Jordan contributing coverage of the Washington Capitals for the blog NoVa Caps. His prior media experiences include working for the Richmond Times-Dispatch, the Danville Register & Bee, Virginia Lawyers Weekly and ABC 8News. He can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter @J__Bondurant.