One of the busiest, if not the busiest play-by-play broadcaster in the industry is Kenny Albert. Whether it is calling a NHL national game for Turner Sports, a Knicks game on MSG, a Rangers game on 98.7 ESPN Radio in New York, an NFL game on FOX during the season, or calling hockey during the Winter Olympics, Albert’s voice is one viewers and listeners hear very often.
Albert was a guest on the most recent episode of Drinks With Binks Podcast with Julie Stewart-Binks on the FUBO Sports Network. For him, the key to being able to pull off the crazy schedule he sometimes has is to be organized. However, even he occasionally feels like he’s in different places at the same time:
“Sometimes, I feel like I am in two places at once. Sometimes, it is hard to keep track of what studio you are in, what hotel room number you are supposed to go to, but to me the key is to be organized,” Albert told Binks. “When I have a number of games coming up in different sports, I’ll start preparing early on. I was in a hotel room a couple of weeks ago. I had four folders in front of me. One was for a Turner hockey game, one was for a Knicks game. I had one for men’s hockey and one was for women’s hockey.
“I’ve had some instances in the past in October especially. Four to five years ago, I would have football on the weekends, a couple of hockey games during the week, maybe a basketball game, and baseball playoffs I worked on several occasions for FOX. There were four sports in the span of eight to nine days. To me, those are the most fun times. I do get a lot of work done in airplanes, in hotel rooms, in taxis, in Ubers. It’s actually not as hard as you might think as far as preparing and getting the work done. To me, the key is organization and preparation.”
As for how Albert prepares for a NFL broadcast, he told Stewart-Binks how much time goes into preparing for a broadcast during the season:
“The process to prepare for an NFL game for a broadcaster is probably about 30 or 40 hours throughout the week leading up to that game,” Albert explained. “It starts on Monday morning and it’s a lot of reading, preparing charts, going through statistics and articles. Of course, I’m including the time we spend on Friday and Saturday with the teams. During football season, I always say besides eating, sleeping, and spending time with your family, for those four months, any free moment I feel you spend preparing for that game.
“With football, you might have two teams in Week 16 that you haven’t seen all year and you have to play catch-up because you know the fans of those teams know everything there is to know about the players, the coaches, the season they’ve gone through. You really have to study their entire season… You do take a bit of a collective deep breath when the season comes to an end, even though it’s so much fun and there’s nothing we’d rather be doing. Once that four-month block of time comes to an end, you do feel like you get a little bit of your life back, but again, I wouldn’t trade it for anything.”
While it can take Albert time to prepare for a NFL game, he said that for him, calling hockey games is comparable to riding a bike:
“It’s so much different than the other sports. In hockey, for example, I’m around the Rangers all the time,” said Albert. “I do work national games but teams play three to four games a week, you go to the morning skates, you watch the prior games. To me, calling hockey is like riding a bike. I can probably wake up in the middle of the night, not even look at the rosters, and do a hockey game if I had to.”
If you want to read more on Albert’s illustrious career, check out the interview that Derek Futterman did with him for Barrett Sports Media in January.
Joe Buck: ESPN Is Letting Us Set Tone For Monday Night Football
“It wasn’t well, you are at ESPN, you have to figure out how we do it.”
While Joe Buck and Troy Aikman will be calling football games on Monday nights for ESPN instead of Sunday afternoons for FOX this year, fans shouldn’t expect the broadcasts to be that much different, if at all, than what they’ve been used to over the last 20 years.
Buck was recently a guest on the Green Light with Chris Long podcast and said that ESPN knows that he and Aikman have to be comfortable in order for Monday Night Football to be a success.
“I know we are in the honeymoon phase. I’m not dumb. That stuff wears off after a while. They are like ‘however you guys have always done a game, that’s the way we want you to do a game whether it’s with regard to meetings vs. conference calls or when you guys show up, how you like the booth set up. However you want it, we are going to do it your way’ and that’s to their credit. It wasn’t well, you are at ESPN, you have to figure out how we do it.”
Buck and Aikman are obviously already very familiar with each other. Buck said that it will be important not to take that for granted or second guess what they already know.
“I think the one thing Troy and I have to avoid is trying to be different than we’ve been. They hired us based on what we’ve done and who we are and how we relate to each other and the way we see a game,” said Buck.
Mike Tirico, Tom Brady, Manningcast Win Sports Emmys
The annual Sports Emmys were handed out on Tuesday night, and some usual names and new names ended up taking home hardware.
Among the usual names were NBC’s Mike Tirico, who won for Outstanding Personality/Studio Host, and soon-to-be Sunday Night Football broadcast colleague Cris Collinsworth, who was named Outstanding Personality/Sports Event Analyst.
But among the new names as Sports Emmy winners include Tom Brady and both Eli and Peyton Manning.
Brady’s Man in the Arena saga won Outstanding Documentary Series, while the Mannings were rewarded for their work on the Monday Night Football Manningcast, which won Outstanding Live Series.
Here’s a rundown of some of the key Sports Emmy winners:
Here is a full list of winners and nominees for the 2022 ceremony.
Joe Buck Says He Won’t Miss World Series
“This is the first time since I was 18-years-old, and I’m 53, that I’m not doing a baseball game.”
Among the bigger chain reactions set off by Joe Buck leaving FOX for ESPN was the sudden vacancy in FOX’s main MLB broadcast booth.
The 2022 World Series will mark the first time since 1995 that Buck will not be on the microphone.
Speaking to Chris Long on his podcast Green Light, Buck hopes to be in a more exotic location watching World Series games this fall.
“I would like to be in Cabo San Lucas with a margarita in my hand and a half-smoked cigar watching Game 7 of the World Series,” Buck said. “Cheering on Joe Davis and John Smoltz, and Ken Rosenthal, and Tom Verducci, and Pete Macheska and Matt Gangl and right on down the line.”
Buck added he’ll take pleasure in turning the broadcast off if it’s Game 7 and there’s an insurmountable lead. But the broadcasting legend said even on a bigger scale, not calling any baseball games at all this season, let alone the World Series, is a bit surreal after covering the sport for so long.
“This is the first time since I was 18-years-old, and I’m 53, that I’m not doing a baseball game,” he said. “And that’s really weird to me, but I walk away really proud of what I and we did.”
He added that he will not miss the opportunity, because he does not feel like he will “leave any unfinished business” in FOX’s MLB booth.
Buck further praised his FOX colleagues and said it was time for a change. He knows Joe Davis will thrive in the opportunity.