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Minihane Returns to WEEI, Discusses Hospitalization

Brandon Contes

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Kirk Minihane

WEEI morning co-host Kirk Minihane returned to the airwaves Friday morning after announcing on Twitter he was hospitalized for “suicidal thoughts” last week.

“I’ve talked a lot about my issues with depression, and I’ve battled it the last three months or so.  Last Thursday night I checked into the ER at Winchester Hospital with suicidal thoughts.  I was then moved to McLean, where I was treated and released earlier this week,” Minihane wrote on Twitter Thursday afternoon.

Minihane continued, “I’ll be back at work tomorrow, and I’m a little nervous about it. But I’m not ashamed or embarrassed. And we’ll do what we do – we’ll talk about it,” referring to Friday’s show.

During the second hour of Friday’s Kirk & Callahan Show Minihane opened up to the audience about his fight with depression and suicidal thoughts.  The conversation between Kirk and Callahan was so candid that as a listener, I had to remind myself what Minihane dealt with was reality.  Callahan approached the situation from a rational standpoint, asking Kirk questions about how could someone with young children leave their family?  To which Kirk responded by saying it’s a sickness, luckily he wasn’t as sick as those who actually took their life which is why he’s still here.

Minihane said he started thinking about how he would do it (referring to suicide) and the best way to do it which led him to focus on trains.  He rode the train a few times and walked the route, but Thursday afternoon Kirk went to watch the train go by.  He checked the schedule and found himself waiting for the train minutes before it came.  Kirk said “I was lying to myself, I think…in saying that I’m just going to go look.”  He began walking around for a few minutes and knew he didn’t want to die, but was struggling with what he was feeling.

“I felt for the past couple weeks that I was having a heart attack almost all the time, I was having a heart attack breathing and then I was also playing this character..A, on the air who was feeling good around my family, who was feeling good talking to my brothers, who was feeling good and joking and doing that, meanwhile sort of dying on the inside.  I said I simply cannot live like this anymore.  I have to give over, I have to give up whatever power I have and I drove the car to Winchester hospital, walked up to the emergency room woman and said, I’m having very dangerous thoughts.”

Minihane later said while he feels better now, he understands depression and anxiety is still something he will continue dealing with.

“The important thing for me is to recognize that I have these down times and tell people right away as opposed to hiding it and hiding it and hiding it.  It doesn’t benefit me at all and it all comes from childhood stuff like everything else, I have to figure that out, but right now I feel okay, I feel pretty good, I think I sort of have a temporary high right now because I’ve been able to talk about it.  Two weeks from now, three weeks from now, I’m sure I won’t feel great for a while and I just have to be honest about it.”

He acknowledged loving his job, his family and the support group he has to rely on moving forward.

Minihane also mentioned a lighter note that occurred shortly after being in the hospital.  “The security guy was a very nice guy, he was probably in his late 20s or early 30s.  I’m in there for about an hour or so and I’m a mess.  He comes up to me, shakes my hand he says, I just want you to know I’m a big fan, but I gotta ask you a question, what’s Portnoy like?”

Brandon Contes is a freelance writer for BSM. He can be found on Twitter @BrandonContes. To reach him by email click here.

Sports Radio News

Chris ‘Mad Dog’ Russo: I Don’t Do As Much Prep As You Think

“Sometimes the radio show is a lot better when it’s a little more spontaneous and you can craft it in your imagination as the day moves along, instead of having it programmed in front of you.”

Jordan Bondurant

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Chris “Mad Dog” Russo would much rather go with the flow for his radio show than try and put everything together ahead of time and hope it comes out well.

Russo was the featured guest on the Golf Digest podcast The Loop, and hosts Christopher Powers, Alex Myers and Steve Hennessey first congratulated Mad Dog on his induction into the Radio Hall of Fame last year. Russo mentioned how he had written a short speech but decided against that after seeing the other inductees run long with their speeches.

Mad Dog was asked about preparing for his SiriusXM sports talk show every day, and he said he really doesn’t put a ton of work into putting a show together.

“On certain days a little more, because on Mondays I do that NFL recap so that takes a little while to put that together at 5 o’clock – probably a couple of hours,” Russo said. “Outside of that not as much as you’d think. I mean obviously I’m gonna follow what’s going on.”

“Sometimes the radio show is a lot better when it’s a little more spontaneous and you can craft it in your imagination as the day moves along, instead of having it programmed in front of you,” he added. “This segment do this, this segment do that. Sometimes when you sort of ad lib it, and you figure it out as you’re moving the program into the second hour and the third hour, it’s a better show.”

Mad Dog talked about how he likes that his radio show is the reverse of when he does First Take on ESPN or High Heat on MLB Network. He likes not having a rundown packed to the gills for his radio show.

“The radio is more of a host’s medium,” he said. “So it’s up to me what we’re going to do.”

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Sports Radio News

Stetson Bennett IV Fires Back at Steak Shapiro Over Parade Criticism

“P.s.: I don’t like you very much mr Steak “and shake” Shapiro.”

Jordan Bondurant

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Georgia walloped TCU last week to win their second straight national championship, and the Bulldog community came together toward the end of the week to celebrate with a parade.

Quarterback Stetson Bennett IV took part in the parade, but 92.9 The Game host Steak Shapiro wasn’t thrilled with how Bennett acted during the celebration.

Shapiro on Tuesday took a shot at Bennett, who appeared to spend some time fiddling with a cell phone during the parade.

Tuesday night, Bennett responded first with a quote tweet.

Bennett followed that up with a longer statement he posted under his quote tweet explaining the situation.

“I appreciate your concern with my image/intentions/loyalties/obligations (as well as your willingness to reach out to me to confirm them),” Bennett wrote. “You obviously thought quite deeply about some motives I might’ve had.”

Bennett said ultimately he was trying to soak up the moment with his teammates, and he was just trying to make sure the celebratory mood was set with the right music on his phone.

“So to finish it off nice and neat: I was controlling the aux and playing bangers so sed and Chris and I could have a blast on our last ride into Sanford,” he said. “That’s pretty much the gist of it.”

Bennett finished with a little dig of his own at Shapiro.

“P.s.: I don’t like you very much mr Steak “and shake” Shapiro,” he said. “But to be fair, I’m not a fan of your work either.”

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Sports Radio News

Ryan Edwards Moves to The Sports Zoo on KOA

“Edwards has been on the radio in Denver since 2009. He spent eight years with 104.3 The Fan. He also did a short stint at Mile High Sports Radio.”

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Ryan Edwards is staying with KOA, but his hours are about to change. The Denver sports radio staple is moving off of Broncos Country Tonight to join Alfred Williams and Dave Logan on The Sports Zoo in afternoon drive.

“I am thrilled to join radio and football legends Dave Logan and Alfred Williams on The KOA Sports Zoo,” Edwards said in a press release. “I look forward to bringing a fans’ perspective to the Denver Broncos and all things Denver sports.”

Edwards has been on the radio in Denver since 2009. He spent eight years with 104.3 The Fan. He also did a short stint at Mile High Sports Radio.

He joined iHeart Denver in 2017. He was on Orange & Blue 760 before the company replaced the station with a conservative talk format. He moved to KOA in 2019, where he has worked on Broncos Country Tonight with Benjamin Albright.

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