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Jeff Passan: I Have Nothing To Do Right Now

“I took a nap,” Passan said. “It was rad.”

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The lockout in Major League Baseball continues, and that means normal days for baseball writers during this time of year have been paused. There can be no contract discussions taking place between clubs and free agents or current players, so there’s no MLB news to be reported outside of any potential new developments in labor talks between the league and the MLBPA.

Still, there is baseball discussion to be had even with the lull in the sport; especially in major league cities like Seattle. ESPN columnist Jeff Passan joined 710 ESPN host Mike Salk on Thursday to talk about the moves the Seattle Mariners made up to the point the lockout started, but the discussion did open up with the two talking about how bored Passan must be right now.

“I imagine you’re bored these days,” Salk said. “I imagine you’re kind of like in your pajamas like the dude in Forgetting Sarah Marshall, just like eating cereal out of a gigantic bowl.”

“It’s great. I got nothing to do kind of,” Passan responded. “You know what my life is like. I’m kind of pretty busy typically.”

He added that during his busy time at this point in the year would mean he’d get little sleep. But the lockout has since changed things up.

“I took a nap,” Passan said. “It was rad.”

Salk responded he didn’t want to hear about all the dull things Passan was up to at home, but Passan offered another glimpse.

“I could tell you about how I did expenses and how I cook,” he joked.

Salk quickly steered the discussion in the direction of the Mariners, but not before getting one last quip in.

“Hopefully you know the goal of radio is to keep people listening, not to get them to tune out,” he joked.

I can agree with Passan, though. Naps are pretty rad.

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Dan Le Batard: ‘Fox Gave $375 Million To Someone Who’s Not Interesting’

“This is one of the easiest jobs in broadcasting. Sitting next to another professional and just being Tom Brady.”

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Reaction continued to pour in on Wednesday to the news that Tom Brady agreed to a massive contract to join the FOX NFL booth.

Dan Le Batard didn’t hold back. He said that $375 million is an absurd amount of money for anyone to make, but he did say that this is all part of a plan for the future Hall of Famer.

“He wants to conquer,” he said. “He’s going to want to conquer the next 20 years. He’s going to do it with a part-time job.”

Domination or not, Le Batard doesn’t think FOX thought much about making a deal with Tom Brady beyond name recognition.

“Tom Brady is not fun or interesting in front of a microphone, Stugotz,” Le Batard said. “They just gave $375 million to somebody who’s never said anything interesting.”

Le Batard added that even though Brady isn’t proven yet on the microphone as an analyst, Brady just being himself is the reason why he commanded so much money.

“This is one of the easiest jobs in broadcasting. Sitting next to another professional and just being Tom Brady,” he said.

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Laurence Holmes: Only Shaq & Kenny Smith Get To Clown On Charles Barkley

“People need to start putting some respect back on Charles’s NBA career.”

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Charles Barkley accomplished plenty in his storied NBA career, with the only real shortcoming being he never won an NBA title.

The lack of a championship is often a go-to when people, including his Inside the NBA cohorts, want to try and talk smack about the Hall of Fame player. But Laurence Holmes of 670 the Score in Chicago says that there are only a few people who can actually get away with some of that kind of ribbing.

Holmes made that point on Wednesday when talking about a recent interaction Barkley had while he was a guest on the podcast The Pivot.

In the exchange, co-host Fred Taylor was trying to ask Barkley about whether he felt like he wasn’t getting the proper attention while playing on the 1992 Olympic basketball team commonly known as “The Dream Team.” The way Taylor phrased the question, Clark and Crowder jumped in trying to kid Barkley for not being as good as he actually was.

Holmes said it was just ridiculous for a broader swath of people to think Barkley never had much of a career.

“People need to start putting some respect back on Charles’s NBA career. Like, for real for real,” he said. “It’s alright for Shaq to joke about Charles not having rings…It’s not cool for the rest of us to act like Charles Barkley was trash.”

Holmes added that Crowder and Clark in that instance were out of line.

“This is not having context, and you feeling like you’re in on the joke,” he said. “You’re not in on the joke.”

The fact is, and Barkley says this in the clip, that Charles was likely the second-best player on that team behind Michael Jordan. By the time the Barcelona Olympics rolled around, Barkley was coming off an MVP season.

“Charles Barkley was not just some dude. He was THE dude for a while!” he said. “This is a league MVP. This is an 11 All-NBA. Not just the all-star game, All-NBA. And people get really comfortable jumping in on what are a lot of times like inside jokes about guys, and occasionally they have to be checked. I’m glad that Charles checked them.”

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Ian Eagle Explains How He Learned About Steve Kerr’s Covid Diagnosis

“That means you’re changing your open. That means your changing your storylines to start the game and Jared’s hit.”

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Ian Eagle was a guest on Papa and Lund on KNBR in San Francisco on Wednesday. The TNT broadcaster was asked how he goes about gathering information and understanding what new off-court stories are shaping conversations about the series.

He said that every game day starts with a full crew breakfast at 10 AM where stories and ideas are thrown out. That is just the beginning though because one meeting wouldn’t be nearly enough.

“If you’re doing paint by numbers in these series, if you just go in and say ’Oh, we’ll just report what we see on the court,’ that’s just not enough certainly in this day and age with information flying around the way it is,” Ian Eagle said.

Coaches’ meetings can be a big part of the preparation, as are check-ins with team PR staffs. He said the goal is to have an overflow of information.

He described being minutes away from he and analyst Jim Jackson meeting with Warriors coach Steve Kerr ahead of Game 4 when information about the coach’s Covid diagnosis came out. Instantly, he knew plans would have to change.

“We were supposed to meet with Steve Kerr at 5:30 local time. At 520, Jared Greenberg runs out of our room and we’re looking at each other like ‘what the hell is going on here? That’s the fastest I ever saw that dude move.’ And he clearly got some information and within 2 minutes there’s a tweet and two minutes after that we get a call from Golden State PR.”

Eagle said that in that situation, all you can do is think about how you are going to set the table for the game with the information you have rather than be frustrated with what you had prepared now being irrelevant.

“That means you’re changing your open. That means your changing your storylines to start the game and Jared’s hit. I think it’s just a full team effort to make sure you’ve got the narratives and what the audience needs to know.”

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