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Craig Carton Declares Jeff Passan ‘Public Enemy #1’

“Passan’s rant was an obvious shot at Carton and Roberts, and the way they covered ESPN’s damning report on Jared Porter.”

Brandon Contes

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Battles between ESPN and WFAN are nothing new, but the latest feud features a new antagonist as Jeff Passan and Craig Carton exchange punches.

During the opening of his Wednesday afternoon show with co-host Evan Roberts, Carton said Passan is now “public enemy number one. And that’s a bad spot for him to be in – that whiny little weasel.” 

On Tuesday, Passan joined ESPN New York’s The Michael Kay Show to discuss the bombshell report he co-wrote with Mina Kimes, which detailed a sexual harassment incident by Mets general manager Jared Porter.

Passan’s first order of business in the interview was to chastise 98.7 ESPN New York’s competition, and the local radio station he used to frequent, WFAN.

“There’s another radio station in New York that’s been pretty damn irresponsible today about its coverage of this. And I hate giving them any shine because they don’t deserve it, but the notion that ESPN has been sitting on this story since 2017 is the most giant load of irresponsible garbage that I’ve heard in a longtime,” Passan said to open the interview.

To clarify, ESPN did receive the information in 2017, but Passan doesn’t believe that means they were “sitting” on the story for four years.

“We have duties as journalists to protect our sources,” Passan continued. “And to look after the people that give us the stories that we get to tell. It is their story, it is not ours.”

Passan’s rant was an obvious shot at Carton and Roberts, and the way they covered ESPN’s damning report on Jared Porter. While Carton did say the timing of ESPN releasing the story was an interesting layer to the overall incident, he also defended their decision.

“ESPN does not have a responsibility to report [the story] when you want it to be reported,” Carton said during the first segment of WFAN’s afternoon show on Tuesday.

Carton also did not dispute the validity of the victim being uncomfortable with ESPN running the story at any point in recent years. But what Carton did state is that he doesn’t believe ESPN was looking to protect the journalist.

“They called her. They brought her back into her worst nightmare, having to deal with the reality of her stalker,” Carton said. “Let’s not act like they give a rat’s ass about the victim, because they don’t.”

According to Passan, he was unaware of the information ESPN held on Porter, it was a report his colleague Mina Kimes was working on and he was only briefed recently. We don’t know when Passan was clued in on the information, but we do know he was very complimentary of Porter when the Mets hired him, which would signal hypocrisy if the MLB Insider was already aware of the new general manager’s past.

If Passan did only learn of the damning information in recent weeks, why was he attached as an equal contributor to a story that Kimes had been working on since 2017? “Some may call that sexist,” Carton wrote of ESPN’s decision to make Passan the front man of a story a female reporter spent years working on.  

Carton invited Passan to join WFAN’s afternoon show, he also offered to go on ESPN to discuss the MLB Insider’s claim of prioritizing the victim over the story. Passan used to frequent WFAN when he was a columnist with Yahoo Sports, but that came to an end once he joined ESPN in 2019. 

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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