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Freezing Cold Takes: Mike Francesa Believes Every Word He Says, Skip Bayless Doesn’t

“He has a knack for saying things defiantly and within a real brief period the opposite happens,” he said.

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Fred Segal, the creator of the popular Freezing Cold Takes Twitter account, didn’t hold back
when it came to talking about some sports media personalities who are kings of the freezing cold take.

Talking to Dan Patrick on Wednesday, Segal said if there was a Mount Rushmore for hosts who
are often wrong or point out the obvious, FOX Sports host Skip Bayless would be one of the
faces.

“There’s things that he posts that are completely obvious that he can’t possibly think those things rationally,” he said.

Segal has a new book coming highlighting some of the best cold takes centered around the NFL.

“And he also has what feels to be a gimmick, his schtick, where he zeroes in on a player and decides, ‘I am going to constantly berate and say negative things about him and spin any positive into a negative.”

Segal thought of LeBron James and Aaron Rodgers as two athletes in particular that Bayless
likes to rip on.

He also said he’d add Mike Francesa to that Mount Rushmore as well, but for different reasons.
Patrick said the difference is that Francesa is just trying to be right and not troll.

“Out of all the people who try to be provocative on-air and are really concerned about being
entertaining, Francesa is completely honest with everything he says,” Segal said. “But he’s so
defiant about what he says.”

He added that Francesa has this ability of being so confident in what he’s saying, only to end up wrong nearly instantly after saying it.

“He has a knack for saying things defiantly and within a real brief period the opposite happens,” he said.

Segal mentioned Francesa saying the New York Jets would never get two first round draft picks
in a trade for Jamal Adams in 2020. Well, the Seattle Seahawks gave two first rounders to the Jets for Adams and a fourth round pick.

Patrick at least credited Francesa for owning his takes.

“He’s genuine in how bad some of his opinions are,” Patrick said.

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Reggie Miller: If TNT Loses NBA Broadcasting Rights, ‘We’re Going to Go Out With a Bang’

“First of all let me say this – this could be retirement for all of us at Turner network next year.”

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Reggie Miller
Courtesy: John Nowak, Warner Bros. Discovery

The NBA is reportedly formalizing media rights contracts with The Walt Disney Company (ESPN/ABC), NBCUniversal and Amazon’s Prime Video as its new trio of partners. If Warner Bros. Discovery ends up losing broadcasting rights to the NBA, it would mark the first time that a Turner-owned network did not televise league games since the 1984-85 season on TBS. Earlier in the season, TNT Sports reached a multi-year renewal agreement with NBA Hall of Fame forward Reggie Miller to continue serving as one of its analysts on its NBA on TNT coverage.

Miller joined the company in 2005 following his retirement from the NBA after an 18-year career with the Indiana Pacers and has called over 650 national NBA regular season games and NBA Playoffs matchups, along with 14 NBA Conference Finals. Yet he could be looking at his final season as a part of NBA on TNT coverage should the company no longer broadcast NBA games.

While it has been reported that Inside the NBA studio analysts Charles Barkley, Shaquille O’Neal and Kenny “The Jet” Smith all have opt-out clauses in their contracts if the company no longer broadcasts the NBA, it is unknown if such a provision exists for Miller. Barkley has been a member of NBA on TNT coverage since 2000 and recently announced that next season will be his last on television no matter what happens. Dan Patrick asked Miller if he believed Barkley was genuine in his announcement following Game 4 of the NBA Finals.

“I don’t want to believe it,” Miller said on the Dan Patrick Show. “First of all let me say this – this could be retirement for all of us at Turner network next year.”

Within his retirement announcement, Barkley emphasized that no one should contact him for interviews and was done speaking on the matter. Over the last month, he had appeared on a variety of sports media programming and spoke candidly on the NBA media rights negotiations, his sentiments on how everything unfolded and the potential future of Inside the NBA. Patrick wanted to know if Miller himself had been informed about what is happening behind the scenes as it pertains to the future of the NBA on TNT.

“We are in the dark – we have no idea,” Miller said. “This is way above my pay grade. I’m hoping – I think our leadership is at the table from everything I’m hearing, again, which isn’t a lot, and I hope they’re having – two minutes left in the fourth [quarter] and they’re trying to pull out a win here. It would be nice.”

Throughout the negotiating process, there has been speculation regarding Barkley potentially joining another network if Warner Bros. Discovery lost rights to the NBA. As he revealed his retirement, he divulged that he had spoken with other networks but affirmed that he would never work elsewhere. Miller interpreted Barkley’s decision to reveal his future plans as a means of getting ahead of the story since his name has been circulating with several different possibilities. In fact, he has known Barkley for a long time and understands that he does things on his own accord.

“So if this is his last year – we’ve had conversations [where] I’m like, ‘Look dude, we’re going to go out with a bang,’” Miller said, “so whatever happens at our network – if we do get a piece of the pie and we’re one of the four horseman; or not, if this is our lame-duck year and this is my last year at Turner as well, we’re going to have fun and go out with a bang.”

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The Blitz 1170 in Tulsa to Cease Operations

“The company decided the sports format wasn’t working and they’re going to take the signal in another direction.”

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After just under three years in the format, Griffin Media is pulling the plug on The Blitz 1170 in Tulsa.

Social media posts from the station’s local hosts reveal that The Blitz will be moving away from its sports format on Wednesday, June 26th.

“There’s some news from our part of the world. Griffin Media has made the decision to eliminate The Blitz 1170 and those of us working there after June 26,” wrote morning host Rick Couri. “The company decided the sports format wasn’t working and they’re going to take the signal in another direction.

“This will likely bring my 42 year career of being on the air in Tulsa to an end, I don’t see a lot of other options for several reasons. I will still be broadcasting Tulsa University and Union football and who knows what else might come along. Until then I want to say thank you to everyone who has listened along the way and those incredible people I’ve worked with. It’s been quite an adventure with many amazing opportunities and experiences to be forever grateful for.”

The station featured Couri in mornings, followed by The Dan Patrick Show and The Rich Eisen Show. Afternoon drive was helmed by Colby Daniels and Program Director Jeremie “Pop” Polin from 3-6 PM. Daniels shared a similar post on social media as Couri.

The Blitz 1170 will be changing formats in a couple weeks. While I’m very sad about this news, I’m more thankful for having this opportunity and establishing friendships that will continue beyond the airwaves. I’m proud of this entire team and can’t say enough positive things about everyone I had the privilege to work with. I appreciate all the listeners supporting the Blitz every day,” Daniels wrote. “Some followed me to this signal and others welcomed me to Tulsa radio with open arms. You all have a special place in my heart.

“I feel like I’m at a major crossroads in my broadcasting career and I don’t know what my next step will be. I know I have so much more to offer but will have to carefully weigh whatever options emerge. It’s rare in this business to be given the opportunity to finish out the last 2 weeks. Our final show will be June 26th so let’s have fun doing what we love until then.”

According to a report from RadioInsight, the station recently changed its call letters to KOTV-AM, to replicate the same branding used by the company’s TV outlet in the market.

Griffin Media has yet to announce plans for the station after flipping away from the sports format on June 26th.

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ESPN LA 710 to Broadcast USC Athletics

“We’re excited to collaborate with ESPN LA 710 AM to advance the USC Athletics brand and connect with fans across the Greater Los Angeles media market.”

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ESPN LA 710

The University of Southern California and ESPN LA 710 have agreed to a deal that will expand their broadcast partnership starting in the 2024 season. ESPN LA 710 will be the flagship station for USC Trojans football and men’s basketball games throughout the season in addition to adding women’s basketball games on the airwaves as well. Beginning in the fall, listeners will be able to hear all of the games on 710 AM, the ESPN LA Trojans Radio Network, in addition to within the USC Trojans Game Day app, the USC Trojans website and the ESPN LA app.

As USC prepares to move to the Big Ten Conference for the season, games will continue to air on the USC Trojans Media Network, which includes affiliates KSZL Barstow 1230 AM, KJJZ-HD3 102.7 Thousand Palms, KSHP Las Vegas 1400 AM and 107.1 FM and the Hawaiian Sports Radio Network on KGU 95.1 FM and 760 AM. Spanish language broadcasts of USC Football will be available on the ESPN LA app and USC Trojans app as well. The USC Trojans Media Network will also air basketball games as new men’s head coach Eric Musselman starts his tenure at the university and the women’s team welcomes transfer forward Kiki Iriafen from Stanford.

“We’re excited to collaborate with ESPN LA 710 AM to advance the USC Athletics brand and connect with fans across the Greater Los Angeles media market,” Jen Cohen, director of athletics at the University of Southern California, said in a statement. “As we move into a new era of Trojan Athletics, identifying partners who can help us provide our student-athletes with the platform to make their mark on collegiate athletics and reach new generations of supporters is critical. From the addition of play-by-play coverage for our women’s basketball program and Spanish-language coverage for football, to the reach and brand equity established by ESPN Radio in Los Angeles, we’re confident this partnership will help us achieve our goals.”

Outside of live game broadcasts for USC football, men’s basketball and women’s basketball, ESPN LA 710 will also air a new weekly program titled Trojans Live. The show will be broadcast on ESPN LA 710 AM from 6 to 7 p.m. EST starting on Monday, Aug. 26 and running through Monday, Dec. 9. ESPN LA 710 previously broadcast USC Trojans Athletics from 2006 to 2019 and is also the flagship home of the Los Angeles Lakers, Los Angeles Rams, Los Angeles Angels and Los Angeles FC.

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