Who has a more impressive resume in their respective industry? Radio’s Christopher Mad Dog Russo or baseball’s Bryce Harper?
Russo lost it during his Tuesday afternoon show on SiriusXM’s Mad Dog Radio, tired of hearing from baseball players who are “overpaid” and “stink,” with Harper topping the list. MLB players are saying they’re ready to go, “tell us when and where,” regarding the need to reach an agreement and start the season. It doesn’t seem like an outlandish negotiating tactic from a frustrated players association, but it clearly got under Russo’s skin.
“Bryce Harper is getting paid $336 million,” Russo yelled. “If you don’t live up to the money and you stink, as he did, I can’t listen to you tell me, ‘I’m raring to go.’ You know what? How about last year? You were awful! Gee whiz! Come on. There is some accountability! Guy’s the highest-paid player in the sport and didn’t even make an All-Star team. For crying out loud! My gosh. With that kind of money comes some responsibility!”
“Stop tweeting when you stunk!” Russo added.
Russo continued the rant, calling out Trevor Bauer and Manny Machado, but said he’d accept tweets from Mike Trout or Anthony Rizzo, considering them more credible because of their career contributions to the sport. It’s an odd take from Dog, screaming that some of the game’s biggest stars aren’t within their right to say they want the season to begin. But credit Russo’s ability to cause a stir.
2019 NL MVP Christian Yelich fired back in support of his fellow MLB players, wondering if Russo’s career accolades should warrant him offering an opinion.
Mets pitcher Marcus Stroman also weighed in, questioning comments Russo made in 2014 about racial inequality in the sports radio industry and specifically on the SiriusXM channel that bears his name.
At the start of his Wednesday show, Russo defended his career achievements, directing people to his Wikipedia page and highlighting the ESPN 30 for 30 doc which told the story of Mike and the Mad Dog. Russo even sounded a little bit like his former WFAN partner Mike Francesa who would pompously tout his impressive resume. “Ratings, longevity, paychecks” Francesa once said, welcoming resume comparisons in those three areas.
“The idea that I have to sit there and read you my resume to any player – look it up,” Russo said in response to Yelich. “Look up the resume if you wish. Just go look at my Wikipedia page and look at the 37, 38 years of being on the air successfully. You know how hard that is?”
Russo also claimed doing his radio show is as hard as what Bauer does (as a pitcher in Major League Baseball). While it might not be easy to remain relevant and host a drive time radio show for more than three decades, there are a lot more professional athletes who built successful second careers as a radio host than there have been radio hosts who became pro athletes.
Last month Russo crushed the players association, telling them to “go to hell” for pushing back on the owners demands of financial givebacks beyond prorated salaries. In addition to his SiriusXM radio show, Russo also hosts High Heat on MLB Network, which is primarily owned by Major League Baseball.
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.”
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.”
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.”
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.
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.
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.”
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.”