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Mason & Ireland Get Multi-Year Extensions

“The announcement was made the same day that Ireland returned as co-host of his midday show following a three week hiatus.”

Brandon Contes

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One of sports radio’s longest tenured duos will continue entertaining listeners as ESPN Los Angeles 710 announced a multiyear contract extension with midday hosts Steve Mason and John Ireland.

The announcement was made the same day that Ireland returned as co-host of his midday show following a three week hiatus.  Ireland, who is employed by the Los Angeles Lakers as their television play-by-play voice, was off-air since the Lakers reached an agreement to acquire Anthony Davis.  Unable to talk about the trade until it was finalized, Ireland returned to ESPN LA’s airwaves this week after the deal was made official by the NBA on July 6th.

“We could not be more excited about the fact that Steve and John will continue with ESPNLA for years to come,” said Scott McCarthy, vice president and general manager of ESPNLA.  “While the two of them are singlehandedly responsible for the lion’s share of my high blood pressure, they are the best in the business.  It’s amazing, and incredibly rare, to see a radio duo delivering their highest numbers ever after 25 years together.”

ESPN LA’s longtime midday hosts first teamed up in 1994 on San Diego’s XTRA 690.  After five years together, Steve Mason, an Ohio native moved to New York City to join WNEW.  Mason and Ireland reunited from 2003 – 07 on KSPN 710 in Los Angeles, and again in 2008 where they’ve remained as ESPN LA’s midday duo.

“It’s a privilege to work at ESPN and it’s an honor to be the OG of sports talk radio in Los Angeles,” Steve Mason said in the press release.  “Special thanks to all the program directors that have worked with us.  Can’t wait to meet the next one (after the current guy),” Mason joked.  Dan Zampillo has been the ESPN LA program director since 2016.

“Mason and I always say that to succeed in life, you need talent, a strong work ethic, and most of all, luck,” added Ireland.  “We feel extremely lucky that ESPN is allowing us to continue with the show.”

Mason and Ireland broadcast each weekday from noon – 3pm PT on ESPN LA, usually extending their show about 30 minutes into the 3 o’clock hour, for what’s known as “purgatory,” their crosstalk segment with afternoon host Jorge Sedano.

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

Angelo Cataldi Thinks Cris Collinsworth Is A ‘Bozo’

“He goes ‘I think Cris is usually smart in and his analysis is good but…” Hughes said before Cataldi interrupted by shouting “No he’s not! No he’s not!”, he reiterated. “He’s not smart!”

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Some analysis made by Sunday Night Football commentator Cris Collinsworth caught the attention of 94 WIP morning host Angelo Cataldi that sent him over the edge Monday morning.

“Joe Banner ripped Cris Collinsworth last night over something he said about Andy Reid in the game last night,” Rhea Hughes said as she detailed Banner’s criticism. “He goes ‘I worked for Andy Reid for 14 years. Cris Collinsworth just said if there’s anything Andy Reid loves to do it’s pound the football.”

“Oh that’s a total lie! Cris Collinsworth is a bozo!”, Cataldi shouted.

Reid faced heavy criticism at the end of his tenure as head coach of the Philadelphia Eagles for his reluctance to run the football. The team routinely finished in the bottom half of the league in rushing yards per game during Reid’s 14 seasons at the helm of the franchise.

“He goes ‘I think Cris is usually smart in and his analysis is good but…” Hughes said before Cataldi interrupted by shouting “No he’s not! No he’s not!”, he reiterated. “He’s not smart!”

“NBC needs to learn he does no work anymore,” Hughes added of Collinsworth.

“Nothing! Stop it! Stop it all of you! Stop it now!”, Cataldi concluded.

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Sports Radio News

Howard and Jeremy: Amazon Prime Video Is Best NFL Broadcast

“Fitz (Ryan Fitzpatrick) is good. Andrew Whitworth is good. It’s top to bottom — maybe Tony Gonzalez is the weak link, I mean, he’s fine — but top to bottom it’s a great broadcast.”

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Amazon Prime Video and Thursday Night Football received backlash last week for failing to mention a previously perceived concussion by Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa after the third-year signal caller suffered a scary-looking concussion in the first half of a game against the Bengals. WGR morning hosts Howard Simon and Jeremy White discussed the Amazon crew, with White saying he believes it’s the best NFL broadcast on Howard and Jeremy.

“I will say, the Amazon crew is getting criticized for not mentioning the Bills game during halftime. So, that aside, for me it’s the best crew,” White said. “Everything about Amazon’s broadcast is the best one. You and I talked about it last week. It is the recently retired players. It is so much better.

“When they were talking on the pregame — just football points, not Tua points — Richard Sherman they ask him like ‘You’ll be mad if what?’ and he said ‘I’ll be mad — and I’m gonna be talking to you at halftime about it — if the Dolphins, after playing 90 snaps on defense against the Bills, put their corners out on islands and don’t give them safety help. They’re gonna get beat, and I’ll be here to tell you it was a mistake that they’re not helping out their corners’. And sure enough, what happened? They did it and they got burned. He would have come back and talked about it at halftime if the Tua thing didn’t happen.”

He continued by pointing out several of the studio analysts as performing well early in their broadcasting careers.

“Fitz (Ryan Fitzpatrick) is good. Andrew Whitworth is good. It’s top to bottom — maybe Tony Gonzalez is the weak link, I mean, he’s fine — but top to bottom it’s a great broadcast.”

The pair also discussed the NextGen Stats alternate broadcast Amazon Prime Video produces as a viable way for those interested in learning more about deeper analytics and statistics of football to consume.

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Sports Radio News

Jets Partner With talkSPORT To Air Six Games on Radio in U.K.

The New York Jets and talkSPORT have agreed to broadcast six 2022 Jets regular season football games.

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New York Jets

Starting this weekend, fans of the New York Jets in the United Kingdom will have local access to their favorite team.

The New York Jets and talkSPORT have agreed to broadcast six 2022 Jets regular season football games. This will establish talkSPORT as the official UK radio broadcast partner of the Jets. Fans will also have exclusive access to the Jets Touchdown UK Podcast and additional Jets content including player and coach interviews.

“We are so thrilled to extend a radio broadcast of the Jets to our fans in the United Kingdom as we take the next step in utilizing our right to expand this game with the help of the world’s biggest sports radio station,” said New York Jets President Hymie Elhai. “This partnership will allow for so much more than 2022 season coverage as we continue to welcome some of the most passionate fans in the world into our fanbase.”

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