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Dave Pasch Explains Why He Makes His Award Voting Public On Wolf & Luke

“I usually say, ‘Here’s how I voted,’ to be transparent. Had I listed all of my votes for each ballot yesterday, I don’t think there would have been as much vitriol from Suns fans.”

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Members of the media, when working or living within a specific locality, are implicitly expected by fans to vote for guys on their local team rather than looking at the complete landscape of the league to determine who is most deserving of each regular season NBA honor. It isn’t fair, but it is a reality. There was a significant backlash to Arizona Cardinals play-by-play announcer and NBA reporter Dave Pasch, after he revealed on Twitter that he voted for Marcus Smart to win defensive player of the year over Phoenix Suns forward Mikal Bridges.

Not all voting members of the media choose to publicize their ballots. On Tuesday, Pasch joined Wolf & Luke on Arizona Sports 98.7 to explain why he continues to publicize his awards votes each year, even if it has meant vociferously hearing the opinions of fans.

“I like to do that… every time they announce an award winner,” said Pasch. “I usually say, ‘Here’s how I voted,’ to be transparent. Had I listed all of my votes for each ballot yesterday, I don’t think there would have been as much vitriol from Suns fans.”

Pasch did not leave Bridges off of the ballot entirely, selecting him as the runner-up to win defensive player of the year honors. While he voted for various other players and personnel from the Phoenix Suns organization in other awards categories, including Monty Williams as the winner of coach of the year. He says that none of the decisions he makes are based on factors solely outside of their qualifications pertaining to the award(s) for which they are nominated.

“None of us that are among the 100 voters take this lightly,” said Pasch. “All of us do our homework. I watch a lot of games and call a lot of games – and again, I’m not trying to defend myself. I’m just stating here that I think all of us make our decisions based on who we think should win – not on where we live or what team we root for.”

These awards are not bereft in their impact, as they carry significant financial implications, especially for players who are consistently nominated. Indeed, the voting members of the media know that their decisions could make a significant impact as to whether an individual player receives bonuses stipulated in their contract, or whether a player can become eligible to receive more lucrative contracts earlier in their careers.

Boston Celtics forward Jayson Tatum, for example, was left off of the three All-NBA teams in last year’s voting, and in so doing, was unable to take advantage of a rule allowing him to be paid a higher percentage of the salary cap. The rule, colloquially known as the “Derrick Rose Rule,” was added to the collective bargaining agreement following the 2010-11 lockout, and it cost Tatum $6.5 million in the average annual value of his salary under his new five-year extension, a total of $32.6 million through the life of the deal.

Despite the Phoenix Suns having the best record in the NBA during the 2021-22 regular season and winning the Western Conference last season, show co-host Ron Wolfey believes the team does not receive enough respect from the national media. In turn, he surmises that this inherent “lack of respect” has led to the organization being overlooked and neglected in league coverage. Nonetheless, Wolfey respects the vote and opinion of Pasch, a member of the media he affirms possesses substantial integrity.

“The one thing I know about you, my brother, is [that] you vote with your heart in your mind,” said Wolfey. “And not only that – you have more integrity in your pinky than I’ll ever have in my entire life. I know the guy you are, and because of that, I respect you greatly.”

Wolfley’s co-host agreed.

“I wish everybody would be transparent like that and put their votes up there because yours are pretty much in line,” he said to Pasch. “Whether people agree with your first or second choice, there was nothing crazy there, but [in] some years you clearly have somebody out there vote just completely off the wall and then they’re not ever held accountable for it.”

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Tony Bruno Relives Favorite Moments With Angelo Cataldi on 94 WIP

“I loved every day. We did stuff that put Sports Radio in Philly on the map and I’m proud of that.”

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Tony Bruno has been a staple of the sports radio business for decades. Bruno is from Philadelphia and was teamed up in the early nineties with a duo still dominating the local airwaves there today, Angelo Cataldi and Al Morganti. The three reunited Thursday morning on 94 WIP to remember the glory days of their partnership and friendship.

One of the first moments Cataldi asked Bruno if he remembered was the update he did from a tree outside of their studio and the answer was an emphatic yes.

“Absolutely, it’s one of the highlights of my life – other than interviewing four Presidents and every sports athlete in history – there’s no bigger moment than me climbing up in the tree, which was obstructing our view of William Penn and the city skyline. That’s what I do, I was a man of action. I’m not one of these guys that talks the talk, I climb the tree to do whatever is necessary.”

More frivolity followed when Cataldi harkened back to a segment of ‘Damsels in Distress’ and a time in which Bruno was sent on the street during a snowstorm to help shovel people out of their driveways. Bruno quickly recalled, “Man of the people. I should run for – I should of run for Governor of Pennsylvania or Senate or something.”

Bruno added that his favorite rant (and one that Cataldi loved too) wasn’t about the Cowboys or sports at all. “My favorite was my Infinity Broadcasting rant where I went on one day and even ripped our bosses, all the way up to the top of Infinity Broadcasting.” Cataldi cackled and praised Bruno’s rants more before being interrupted by Bruno saying, “yeah, my only regret is I never really ripped Al (Morganti) the way I should have ripped him. I let him of the hook so many times.”

An insightful moment came at the end of the call when Cataldi asked rhetorically if Bruno ever thought they (Cataldi & Morganti) would still be doing this thirty years later and then asked if Tony ever regretted leaving.

“It was a tough decision, Ang,” Bruno answered. “I was given an ultimatum. When I came to work with you guys, I loved every day. Every day we had fun. We did stuff that put Sports Radio in Philly on the map and I’m proud of that. It wasn’t one of those, ‘oh I got to go; I’m too big for these guys’. I even turned the ESPN job down a couple of times.

“My kids were still younger then, I didn’t want to move. I didn’t have to move. They said just come up here on weekends and that’s how ESPN Radio started. So I was doing weekends and Tom Bigby (Program Director) didn’t like that either, told me it wasn’t going to work. It was a philosophical thing. When he told me, ‘you should go because we are not going to pay you what they’re paying you,’ I said ok.

Cataldi began to sign off with Bruno with genuine thanks: “I got to tell you something Tone, we are indebted to you for the rest of our lives because we both learned so much from you and you are one of the great talents that radio has ever had.”

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Sports Radio News

Dodgers Temporarily Pull Broadcasters Off Road

“If the broadcasters’ are not dealing with severe cases of Covid and they have cleared health and safety protocols, it appears the team is open to sending them back out on the road.”

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When the Los Angeles Dodgers visit the East Coast later this week, the men that call the action on TV and radio will not be with them. The games will instead be broadcast on AM570 LA Sports and SportsNet LA from their respective studios.

“Due to a few members of the Dodgers’ broadcast team having recently tested positive for COVID-19, and out of an abundance of caution, the Dodgers have decided to not travel their broadcasters to upcoming games in Philadelphia and Washington,” the Dodgers announced in a statement. Similar to the 2020 and 2021 MLB seasons, the games will be broadcast from Los Angeles,” reads a statement on the team’s Twitter account.

No further details are available, so the severity and the number of cases remain unknown.

Last September, both members of the Dodgers’ television play-by-play crew were forced into quarantine. Joe Davis was the first to test positive, followed later that month by Orel Hershiser.

On Wednesday, manager Dave Roberts told the media that the Dodgers’ roster and coaching staff are not effected.

“There’s there’s no symptoms in the clubhouse. I think that as far as the upstairs, as an organization, we’re all just trying to be very cautious. But as far as in the clubhouse, coaches, training staff, nothing like that.”

If the broadcasters’ are not dealing with severe cases of Covid and they have cleared health and safety protocols, it appears the team is open to sending them back out on the road. 2022 was supposed to be a return to normal for the Dodgers and many other teams after not letting broadcasters travel in 2020 and 2021.

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Sports Radio News

Pat McAfee: ‘No One Will Disrespect Jim Rome On My Show’

“That’s because you need to respect the f–king jungle.”

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Jim Rome is a sports radio icon and Pat McAfee recognizes that.

On The Pat McAfee Show on Wednesday, McAfee was talking to co-host A.J. Hawk about how Rome trended recently on Twitter.

This happened after news of Tom Brady’s FOX Sports deal surfaced, and a list of the top paid sports media personalities was compiled. Rome came in behind Brady at number two making a reported $30 million a year, and many were surprised by that number. McAfee wasn’t.

“That’s because you need to respect the f–king jungle,” he said. “I have nothing but respect for Jim Rome.”

McAfee gave props to Rome, 57, saying he’s been doing sports talk probably longer than anyone. He’s one of the most widely distributed hosts in the country. Pat said he won’t tolerate anyone talking smack about the Smack-Off King.

“No disrespect will be said on this show of Jim Rome, ever,” he said. “Love that man.”

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