The current camaraderie within WFAN’s new weekday lineup is unprecedented for the New York sports radio station.
Since Craig Carton slid into WFAN’s afternoon show last week, his colleagues have been exceedingly welcoming. The morning and midday shows are openly rooting for him, they share laughs and jokes and poke fun at each other in jest.
But two weeks ago, when Boomer Esiason expressed envy over Carton’s big desk, I predicted it was only a matter of time before the morning and afternoon shows good-natured ribbing turns serious. And on Friday, Carton admitted the obvious. There will eventually be a radio war between his new afternoon show and his former partners in mornings.
“Here’s the reality, there’s going to be a war,” Carton told his afternoon co-host Evan Roberts. “There’s going to be a war, I just don’t know when it’s gonna happen.”
“They’re going to say something,” Carton said of WFAN’s morning show hosted by Esiason and Gregg Giannotti. “They’re not going to mean anything by it, but something will be said that I will overreact to. And I will then respond the way I respond to things – with a blow torch.”
Carton added that he doesn’t expect the attack to be personal, instead the firestarter will more likely feature a snide comment about credibility or performance.
During his ten years as the point guard of WFAN’s morning show, Carton regularly clashed with station icon and afternoon host Mike Francesa. That uneasiness between WFAN’s morning and afternoon shows continued even after Carton left, thanks to Gio’s tendency to make fun of the Sports Pope.
Carton uses radio wars as fuel for content, he always has and everyone at WFAN knows it, with many of them previously getting a front row seat to watch it. For now, Peter Rosenberg and the rest of ESPN New York’s The Michael Kay Show might be enough of a battle for Carton. But it’s only a matter of time before Carton goes after one of his own.
NASCAR President ‘Can’t Overstate’ Importance of New TV Deal
“Everyone talks about getting younger and we’re no different…We have, but we have to keep going…”
Yesterday, NASCAR announced a new television deal with 10 races split between new partners Amazon Prime Video and TNT. NASCAR President Steve Phelps says you can’t overstate the importance of new partnerships.
In an interview with Sports Business Journal, Phelps admitted the agreements with TNT — and it’s Max streaming service — and Amazon Prime Video are focused on reaching a younger audience.
“I don’t think you can overstate how important it is,” Phelps said. “Everyone talks about getting younger and we’re no different. Have we had success over the last three years getting younger and more diverse? We have, but we have to keep going and we have to meet those potential fans where they are, whether that’s our Netflix show that’s going to come out early next year or what’s going to happen with here.
“Amazon is going to do some different content-related things going into 2025 and … our expectation is Warner Bros. Discovery is going to plug us into Bleacher Report, House of Highlights, and other channels that will start to promote NASCAR. Because, honestly, we haven’t had a lot of that. Now they’re a partner and see us as a partner and there’s going to be a mandate to promoting NASCAR, and that to me is really important and it speaks to the changing landscape of where media consumption is going specifically.”
Phelps continued by saying it was “one of the most important, if not the most important” contracts of his career, noting that the new deal was about more than just money.
“It was critical – even past dollars. Are they important? Of course, but it’s really about having these distribution outlets that are just incredible. The reach these five companies have is incredible.”
SiriusXM and MLB Sign Extension Through 2028
“We’re very proud to continue Baseball’s rich history of reaching fans through their radios.”
SiriusXM and Major League Baseball have announced an extension of their partnership that goes through the 2028 MLB season.
Every MLB game will remain available to SiriusXM subscribers on their car radios and in the SiriusXM app. The new deal also ensures that MLB Network Radio will continue through the 2028 season.
“We’re very proud to continue Baseball’s rich history of reaching fans through their radios. Today, we’re delivering those fans the sounds of the game through SiriusXM’s state-of-the-art platforms in the car and on the SiriusXM app,” said SiriusXM President and Chief Content Officer Scott Greenstein.
“Being able to hear their team’s announcers is important to fans, and no matter where you are listening from across North America, you’ll get access to every team’s broadcast for every game on SiriusXM. Couple this with the best daily talk and analysis of the game on the MLB Network Radio channel and SiriusXM is a must-have for baseball fans, and will be for years to come.”
The new agreement continues the relationship between SiriusXM and MLB that dates back to the 2005 season.
“The collection of MLB game presentations and content that has developed through our extended relationship with SiriusXM has been a powerful asset in making our game more accessible to fans wherever they are,” said MLB Executive Vice President of Media & Business Development Kenny Gersh.
“The sounds of Baseball are an important part of our story and we’re proud to continue to work with SiriusXM as they advance and grow the MLB streaming experience for fans on their platforms.”
Jonathan ‘T-Bone’ Smith: I Want to Be the First Radio Show on OnlyFans
The conversation occurred two days after co-host Mike Ricordati wanted to skip commercial breaks following Ohio State’s loss to Michigan.
Earlier in the week, Mike Ricordati of 97.1 The Fan wanted the afternoon program to skip all of its commercial breaks for the remainder of the show to discuss the Ohio State Buckeyes’ third consecutive loss to the Michigan Wolverines. After addressing the incident at the start of the program on Tuesday, the show took the air and outlined how fans can interact with the hosts during the midst of the show. That then led to a suggestion from Jonathan “T-Bone” Smith about a new distribution medium for the afternoon program.
“I’m hopeful that we become the first radio show to cross over to OnlyFans, but not because we’re like, ‘Check out what’s going on. Click on my OnlyFans,’” Smith said on Wednesday’s edition of Common Man & T-Bone. “It’s not that; it’s more of we’re on there doing an uncensored show, but we’re not visually. We can have a picture of us.”
Upon being told by Ricordati that he was essentially describing a podcast, Smith described how it would be a delivery device where subscribers would have to pay to consume the content. Ricordati expounded on the idea and divulged his vision about what such a program would entail and how it would differ from the current iteration of the show.
“We do a straight show just like this, except people tune in to the webcam and we’re just sitting there in S&M outfits,” Ricordati said. “We make no mention of it; we do nothing with it, but we’re sitting there in studded leather clothing with a dog collar and whips and chains and a meathook hanging from the ceiling, and we just do a regular show just like that.”
“I am 100% in on this,” replied Jonathan “T-Bone” Smith.
Ricordati continued by stating that the money for the program would be donated to charity, specifically citing the United Sex Workers of America, and continued the segment for several more minutes. The debauched conversation continued by pondering if any of the coaches at Ohio State had ever heard of the OnlyFans platform, something Smith surmised they had because of their proximity towards upperclassman football players.
“We have a show login for pretty much every single website that exists in the sports world – like ESPN+ and [The] Athletic and whatever,” Ricordati said. “….Corporate’s paying for it. We have a show login. I wonder if over at the Woody [Hayes Athletic Center], they have a generic login for OnlyFans just to see what’s going on.”