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Dan Le Batard: Hank Goldberg Was a Legend But Terrible To Many People

“I don’t want to get aggregated as ‘Le Batard Dances on Hank Goldberg’s Grave’…I would never say that I am happy to see anyone die. I am just saying that I was never that happy when he was alive.”

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Many mourned the passing of Hank Goldberg on Monday. He was a longtime, loud voice in Miami radio on WIOD and even longer with WQAM. He was also a familiar face to ESPN viewers.

Dan Le Batard, beginning in 1990, was also a loud voice in Miami as a columnist with the Miami Herald. He and Goldberg had a strong, often bitter, rivalry that played out in the eyes of the public.

On The Dan Le Batard Show with Stugotz, Le Batard commented on the passing of Hank Goldberg and his comments were an “honest” discussion of the two’s history.

“More than merely a legend, I can say this honestly, if not for Hank Goldberg, this would not exist (referencing the now podcast). All of it. The Hank Goldberg coaching tree, the best thing it birthed, sits right next to me. It has belched out little other radio talent but Stugotz is the lasting legacy of what Hank Goldberg did.”

The podcast goes on to tell the story of Stugotz, once the executive producer for Hank Goldberg, needing looking talent when he was part of a group that launched WAXY-AM also known as 790 The Ticket. Stugotz never forgot how much Goldberg did not like Le Batard. Goldberg would read Le Batard’s columns on air and react to them weekly with vitriol. Stugotz got an idea to counter-program Goldberg’s and WQAM’s ratings dominance.

“Because he would talk about Dan so much when I was the executive producer of his show,” Stugotz said, “I figured ‘hey I got to hire this guy to go against Hank Goldberg… if I can get Hank to go against Dan or Dan go against Hank then Dan would have a daily platform to snap back if he wanted to.”

Le Batard would join WAXY and the back-and-forth that came mostly from Goldberg’s frequent bashing of the columnist, now had two sides. Le Batard, who well aware of how his comments may seem, tried to tame the waters some.

“I don’t want to get aggregated as ‘Le Batard Dances on Hank Goldberg’s Grave’ or buries Hank Goldberg. I would never say that I am happy to see anyone die. I am just saying that I was never that happy when he was alive,” Le Batard opined. “He was truly terrible to so many people…you want to talk about this honestly? He was a legend, yeah. And he was an asshole to a whole lot of people”.

Stugotz added more context. “Hank didn’t like you (Le Batard) because Hank had an ego and you were a perceived threat”.

Le Batard referenced stories he didn’t want tell about Goldberg “playing defense” on his career but did say that Goldberg’s impact on the city was undeniable.

“Hank Goldberg in this town, did create a sports voice that helped make us more national. And made gambling a little more normal. And Hank Goldberg in this town, before anyone else, was a big shot in this town…”

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Adam Copeland Steps Down as KNBR Program Director

We have great momentum, thank you to everyone in the building for your work and passion keeps us pushing forward.

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A photo of Adam Copeland
Courtesy: Cumulus Media

Adam Copeland has stepped away from his duties as program director of KNBR, KGO and KTCT in San Francisco, Barrett Sports Media has learned. In an internal memo obtained by Barrett Sports Media, Cumulus San Francisco regional vice president and market manager Larry Blumhagen divulged that Copeland will continue hosting his afternoon drive show, Tolbert and Copes, alongside Tom Tolbert.

“We have great momentum, thank you to everyone in the building for your work and passion keeps us pushing forward,” Blumhagen said in the note.

Copeland began working in the program director role last November while continuing his afternoon drive hosting obligations, a role he had held since 2022. He has been a member of KNBR since 2009, beginning as an intern in the promotions department before he was hired as a part-time board operator. Copeland previously produced KNBR Tonight and hosted The Leadoff Spot, while also producing and board operating for Murph and Mac. One month after he was named program director, KNBR cut several members of its staff, including hosts Paul McCaffrey and F.P. Santangelo.

A recent column by Barrett Media President Jason Barrett drew attention to Copeland’s questionable behavior on social media. The decision comes four days after the column was published on the BSM website.

This is a developing story. More information will be added as it is learned.

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Charles Barkley: ‘Morale Sucks – Plain and Simple,’ TNT Screwed Up NBA Media Rights Negotiations

“We just won the [Sports Emmy for] ‘Best Studio Show’ – but these fools turn us from Inglenook and Opus into damn Boone’s Farm and Ripple. It’s crazy.”

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Charles Barkley
Courtesy: Jamie Schwaberow, NBAE via Getty Images

As negotiations for media rights to the National Basketball Association continue throughout the postseason, there have been recent reports claiming that the league is formalizing deals with The Walt Disney Company, NBCUniversal and Amazon. The league ostensibly looks positioned to nearly triple its existing rights fee; however, the issue of Warner Bros. Discovery deciding to match an offer and the scope of such a right remains somewhat ambiguous. Nonetheless, many basketball fans are loathing a potential end to Inside the NBA, the Emmy Award-winning studio program within the NBA on TNT. Hall of Fame forward and studio analyst Charles Barkley recently appeared on the Dan Patrick Show to provide his perspective on the negotiations.

Barkley currently works alongside host Ernie Johnson and analysts Kenny “The Jet” Smith and Shaquille O’Neal on Inside the NBA, adeptly blending esoteric knowledge and lighthearted repartee to the set. The program is currently closing out its year covering the Western Conference Finals on location from Target Center in Minneapolis, Minn. while consistently receiving messages about its end. Patrick simply asked Barkley about the sentiment at the company, to which he gave a candid and straightforward response.

“Morale sucks – plain and simple,” Barkley said. “I just feel so bad for the people I work with, Dan. These people have families, and I just feel really bad for them right now, these people I work with. They screwed this thing up clearly. We don’t have zero idea what’s going to happen. I don’t feel good – I’m not going to lie – especially when they came out yesterday and said, ‘We bought college football.’ I was like, ‘Oh damn, they could have used that money to buy the NBA.’”

TNT Sports will be sublicensing College Football Playoff games from ESPN under a five-year agreement ahead of the tournament’s expansion to 12 teams. Under the deal, TNT Sports will broadcast two first-round College Football Playoff games during the 2024 and 2025 seasons, along with two additional quarterfinal games beginning in 2026 and ending in the 2028 season. As soon as the deal was closed, Barkley thought about how the money could have been allocated to fund a new NBA media rights deal. Warner Bros. Discovery entities – which began with TBS – have been broadcasting NBA games since the 1984-85 season, rendering the venture the longest-standing rightsholder.

Patrick then offered the idea of Barkley, Smith, Johnson and O’Neal to start a production company and continue to broadcast Inside the NBA in Atlanta, Ga. with the existing personnel. From there, the program could be licensed to NBC or Amazon while owning the production company itself. Barkley replied by stating that he had spoken to his colleagues about signing with his production company and would love to do it should TNT Sports lose the rights to the league. He first saw the suggestion on the internet and thought of it to be a great idea.

“My two favorite wines are Inglewood and Opus, and these clowns I work for, they’ve turned us into Ripple and Boone’s Farm and Thunderbird,” Barkley said. “We’ve got the best studio show. It’s so funny – we just won the [Sports Emmy for] ‘Best Studio Show’ – but these fools turn us from Inglenook and Opus into damn Boone’s Farm and Ripple. It’s crazy.”

Patrick perceived Barkley to be genuinely angry, a sentiment that he confirmed in his subsequent response. He reminisced about how he has seen the crew grow around Inside the NBA over his 24 years with the network and watching their children progress as they visit the studio. Barkley remembers meeting newborn children and seeing them years later as college graduates.

The familial relationship that has been formed around the show is something he evidently cherishes, and he would be disappointed to see the program end. It led Patrick to ponder over just how TNT Sports erred in the negotiations, leading Barkley to reference a previous comment made by David Zaslav, Warner Bros. Discovery president and chief executive officer, at an RBC investor conference in 2022.

“When we merged, that’s the first thing our boss said [was] ‘We don’t need the NBA,’” Barkley explained. “Well, he don’t need it, but the rest of the people – me, Kenny, Shaq and Ernie and the people who work there – we need it, so it just sucks right now.”

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SiriusXM Signs Exclusive Podcast Agreement with Dirty Mo Media

“We are very excited to team up with Dale Jr. and the team at Dirty Mo to bring several of the leading NASCAR podcasts into the SiriusXM Podcast Network.”

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SiriusXM; Dirty Mo Media
(Illustration) | SiriusXM Logo – Courtesy: SiriusXM | Dirty Mo Media Logo – Courtesy: Dirty Mo Media

SiriusXM has reached a new, exclusive podcast agreement with Dirty Mo Media, the multimedia content platform founded by Hall of Fame NASCAR driver Dale Earnhardt Jr. This new deal will provide exclusive advertising and distribution rights to Dirty Mo Media for its slate of programming on the SiriusXM Podcast Network, along with opportunities for crossover events between Dirty Mo Media and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio. Earnhardt Jr.’s podcast, the Dale Jr. Download, will also air twice per week on the SiriusXM NASCAR Radio channel beginning in early June. Both entities will collaborate on special event broadcasts during the year as well, including at the forthcoming Daytona 500.

“This is a great day for our company,” Earnhardt Jr. said in a statement. “This agreement allows us to continue producing the shows we want to produce and telling the stories we want to tell to an audience that values our brand of originality, passion and candor. This also brings my relationship with SiriusXM full circle. I first started hosting my own show nearly two decades ago on XM Satellite Radio. We did it for a couple years. Since then, nothing has changed other than I’m now a married father of two, I don’t race as much, XM is called SiriusXM, and I am bringing an entire media company back with me.”

Earnhardt Jr., along with executive producer Mike Davis, founded Dirty Mo Media in 2013 and has become an enduring, impactful platform in sports media. In addition to constructing its podcast network, Dirty Mo Media also created and produced a television series titled Lost Speedways where Earnhardt visited and explored several abandoned racetracks across the United States. The company is also working with Amazon’s Prime Video and Imagine Documentaries on a four-part documentary that will tell the story of his father, legendary racecar driver Dale Earnhardt Sr. Earnhardt Jr. will also serve as an analyst for coverage of NASCAR racing for Prime Video and TNT Sports beginning in 2025, concurrent with the start of its new seven-year media rights deal reportedly worth a total of $7.7 billion.

“One of our main areas of emphasis over the past year has been increasing our collaborations and expanding relationships,” Davis said in a statement. “A lot of that is simply knowing who we are, what we are trying to be and where we can be most effective. For Dirty Mo Media, we are a relatable, personality-driven brand of content creators and documentarians. Combine that with the reach, resources and credibility of SiriusXM, this relationship will produce fruit and serve our fans well.”

SiriusXM Media, the advertising division of the company, has gained exclusive global advertising sales rights to the Dirty Mo Media lineup of sports podcasts. These include the aforementioned Dale Jr. Download, Door Bumper Clear and Actions Detrimental with Denny Hamlin among others. The podcasts will join the SiriusXM Podcast Network, which the company states reaches one in two podcast listeners in the United States every month.

“We are very excited to team up with Dale Jr. and the team at Dirty Mo to bring several of the leading NASCAR podcasts into the SiriusXM Podcast Network,” Sarah Van Mosel, senior vice president of podcast strategy at SiriusXM, said in a statement. “This not only bolsters the strength of our podcast offerings, but the addition of the ‘Dale Jr. Download’ to the SiriusXM NASCAR Radio channel enhances the programming available to our SiriusXM subscribers. This is another great example of the unique ways SiriusXM and talented creators like Dale and his team can work together.”

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