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Eagles Report Leads To Feud Amongst Reporters & Hosts

Brandon Contes

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Last week ESPN reporter, Josina Anderson shared information from an anonymous Eagles player who was critical of the team’s offense and quarterback Carson Wentz.

On Monday, WIP’s Howard Eskin joined Angelo Cataldi’s morning show and stated Eagles wideout Alshon Jeffery was the anonymous source. “The thing is, here’s why he’s foolish and stupid,” Eskin said. “He knows that she’s not out to have his back. The problem is, as a reporter, I’ve seen her do this. She’ll bait a guy and then the guy gets trapped into saying things and he says them. It’s just foolish and stupid.”

Shortly after Eskin’s appearance on WIP, Anderson indirectly denied Jeffery was her anonymous source in a tweet.

The quarrel didn’t stay between Eskin, Anderson and Jeffery, as afternoon host on WIP’s rival station, Mike Missanelli of 97.5 The Fanatic chimed in on the Philadelphia sports story.  

“Everybody who is in the media who works and covers the Eagles can’t stand the fact that a part-time media member and full-time water boy is on the sidelines reporting for the radio broadcast,” Missanelli said referring to Eskin. Eskin hosted afternoons on WIP for over two decades, but since 2011 his focus has been as an insider for the station. Missanelli then played audio from Doug Pederson’s news conference as the head coach addressed the situation with Eskin and Anderson.

During their Monday news conference, another reporter (Jeff McLane) asked Pederson about Jeffery being Anderson’s anonymous source. In an attempt to defer the question, Pederson referred to the story as “last week’s news.” McLane then notes since Eskin patrols the Eagles sideline and wears a Super Bowl ring, does that mean the team leaked information about Alshon Jeffery to him? Pederson again dismisses the question.

“The Super Bowl ring I can tell you,” Missanelli said as he continues his criticism of Eskin. “He didn’t get a ring, he bought it. That’s how pathetic what we’re talking about here is. Plus, he doesn’t get paid for being on the sidelines. He just likes to be there to be included. That’s the level of patheticness we’re talking about here.”

The final chapter of Monday’s strange sports media day in Philadelphia was written by Eskin as he stood by his report. Via Twitter, the WIP reporter made no mention of Missanelli’s comments on The Fanatic, but did refer to Jeff McLane. “There was a foolish/statement question at HC Doug Pererson’s News Conference Monday suggesting I was “fed” the story by Eagles. As I said on radio the team has never fed me a story. Working over 30 years in this market I break stories by showing up and working my sources. This story is now yesterday’s news as far as I’m concerned.”  

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

Jonathan Zaslow No Longer With WQAM

An attempt to reach out to Zaslow for comment went unanswered.

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WQAM midday host Jonathan Zaslow is no longer with WQAM in Miami.

The radio station has removed his show from the website and references to him and his normal 10a-2p ET midday timeslot program have been scrubbed from the station website.

Zaslow tweeted at 5:19p ET confirming the news.

Whether or not this has any effect on his involvement with the Miami Heat broadcasts is unknown as of now.

Barry Jackson, a veteran journalist with the Miami Herald, reports that 790 The Ticket morning hosts Brendan Tobin and Leroy Hoard will move to that 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. WQAM slot during the week of Oct. 3.

In more station movement, Joe Rose’s WQAM morning show with Zach Krantz now will be simulcast on The Ticket, replacing the Tobin/Hoard program. Audacy, which owns both WQAM and The Ticket, also simulcast Marc Hochman’s and Channing Crowder’s afternoon show.

Zaslow had been with 790 the Ticket since 2004. He was transitioned from Audacy-owned 790 to sister station AM 560 Sports WQAM last October. During his tenure he has worked with a number of established local voices including Joy Taylor, Amber Wilson, Brett Romberg, and Brendan Tobin amongst others.

WQAM has gone thru a number of changes, including a rebranding effort to call the station “560 The Joe”. That ended last year with the station returning to the AM 560 Sports WQAM brand listeners were more familiar with. What they have planned next in Zaslow’s timeslot is unclear but local listeners will likely get some answers next week.

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Sports Radio News

Vanessa Richardson Named Houston Rockets Sideline Reporter, Paul Gallant to Host Solo on ESPN 97.5

Vanessa Richardson will be on the sidelines for the Houston Rockets and Paul Gallant will host solo show on ESPN 97.5.

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Vanessa and Gallant

Changes are taking place in Houston sports media. First, the Houston Rockets will have a new television sideline reporter this season, and she’s a familiar name to Houston sports fans.

Vanessa Richardson, the now former co-host of ESPN 97.5’s Vanessa and Gallant, revealed that she will be on the sidelines for the NBA franchise covering the team for AT&T SportsNet Southwest.

She tweeted the news saying, “Elated to be the new Houston Rockets sideline reporter! I can’t wait to travel the country & share the stories of this dynamic team during 80+ games on AT&T SportsNet Southwest. I’ll continue to fill-in as a host/reporter for Astros broadcasts as well.”

Richardson’s co-host, Paul Gallant, tweeted that with Richardson leaving the show for the Rockets sideline gig, Vanessa and Gallant will become the Paul Gallant Show. The solo show led by Gallant begins Monday September 26th.

“We’re excited to have Paul host his own show”, said Todd Farquharson, General Manager of ESPN 97.5 & 92.5.  “He’s super creative, energetic, and likeable.  He’ll get the audience involved and have fun.”

Paul commented, “You know what I’ve always loved about sports talk radio?  That it’s interactive.  Whether through a phone call, text message, tweet or on Twitch, it’s the best place for sports fans to come together and celebrate…or vent.  And that’s what The Paul Gallant Show is going to be…Houston’s platform to talk about its teams. THE most interactive sports talk show in Houston.”

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Sports Radio News

Ken Carman: Al Michaels ‘Feels Untethered’ On Amazon Prime Video

“The thing that stuck out was Kirk Herbstreit ripping the elf,” said Carman. “Don’t be ripping Brownie the Elf, man.”

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The Cleveland Browns defeated the Pittsburgh Steelers during Thursday Night Football on Amazon Prime Video. 92.3 The Fan morning host Ken Carman applauded Al Michaels for his performance during the presentation.

“Al Michaels feels untethered for the first time. He’s not network television anymore and he can say whatever he wants. We interviewed him on the pregame show and I was nervous,” Carman said.

“He’s a legend,” co-host Anthony Lima added.

During the final play of the game, the Steelers fumbled a lateral into the endzone which the Browns recovered to make the final score 29-17. Michaels said “that may be meaningful to some of you. And you know who I mean”, alluding to people who had placed wagers on the game.

Carman, who hosts two-hours of pre-game coverage on the Browns Radio Network, continued to discuss how nervous he was interviewing Michaels. He also discussed how impressive Amazon’s behind-the-scenes production was, pointing out the only football broadcast with more cameras is the Super Bowl. More than 400 people work behind the scenes for Amazon Prime Video.

“The thing that stuck out was Kirk Herbstreit ripping the elf,” said Carman. “Don’t be ripping Brownie the Elf, man.”

Carman later said people angry that Michaels misspoke by saying the Pro Football Hall of Fame is “down I-71” instead of I-77 were unreasonable, and joked “Al Michaels hasn’t been on a highway in 20 years”.

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