Damon Amendolara opened his CBS Sports Radio show on Thursday morning by acknowledging that his days at the network are numbered. SiriusXM announced yesterday that he will be taking over the morning show on Mad Dog Sports Radio beginning October 2.
“Instead of a cold open here, I just thought I would talk and reflect and use today and tomorrow to do the same thing,” he said to start the 6 o’clock hour.
He thanked by CBS Sports Radio and the audience for being integral to the show’s success. He noted that finding a dedicated audience is what helped the show grow in overnights and move to more prominent day parts of the course of the last eleven years.
“These eleven years have been a pure joy to work here at CBS Sports Radio,” Amendolara said. “I’ve said this often. The coolest thing about this place for the last 11 years is they gave me total freedom to do what I wanted to do. My mind was the only limit in what we could do creatively. Man, and for those that are creative, maybe you’re a painter, you’re a musician, maybe you’re an artist, a sculptor, maybe you just look at landscaping and see a bunch of weeds and go, ‘I can create something out of that,’ or maybe you see a car that needs to be renovated and go, ‘I can create something out of that.’ Those things, to me, are my oxygen. I love that part of this job. And they let me do it. I mean, look at how weird this show is sometimes! They let me do it, and for that I am forever grateful.”
He said that the show felt complete once it made the move from nights to middays. That is when Andrew Bogusch and Pete “The Body” Bellotti joined the show.
“I have worked with some amazing, amazing people. Bellotti and Bogusch and me and Mraz (former producer Shawn Morash). I just couldn’t have asked for anything more. These guys are next-level talented, next-level committed, and it was just such a synergy immediately. It was like, ‘Wow, this is special. And that started in 2017. So I can say without a shadow of a doubt, the last six plus years of working with these guys, these shows mid-morning, then we were promoted to mornings going into 2020. These six years with Bogusch and Bellotti have just been the greatest radio I’ve ever done.”
He concluded by saying that in the end, the offer that SiriusXM made him checked all the boxes of what he would need in order to feel good about leaving CBS Sports Radio.
Amendolara admitted that he wanted to take the entire crew with him. It just was not going to work out.
“It’s hard to leave these guys and it’s hard to leave what we’ve built here. But it wasn’t an option. Because of the inner workings of radio, that wasn’t an option. They are too valuable here, and they’re going to be wonderful and supportive and talented for Maggie & Perloff, who are taking over the morning show starting on Monday.”
Greg Papa: ‘These Are Rough Times’ After KNBR Cuts
“Murph, I’ve known forever, going back to the A’s days. These are rough times. Things change.”
Late Wednesday, it was unveiled that KNBR had undergone a series of cost-cutting measures that eliminated the jobs of morning co-host Paul McCaffrey and evening host F.P. Santangelo. KNBR midday host Greg Papa reflected on the changes Thursday morning.
To open Papa and Lund, Greg Papa took the opportunity to address the elephant in the room.
“With Murph and Mac, and Pauly, I’ve been on with them every Friday since I started working with the Niners in 2019, and we hardly ever talked football,” Papa said. “It was always about other things and coming to the studio and getting to know them. Murph, I’ve known forever, going back to the A’s days. These are rough times. Things change. Look at what’s going on with the RSNs in the country. Certainly, terrestrial radio is feeling the brunt of it for a number of factors.”
John Lund agreed, calling McCaffrey “one of my favorites”.
Fill-in host Deiter Kurtenbach hosted the morning show Thursday in place of Brian Murphy. Papa joked that the fill-in host needed a better understanding of radio if he’s going to have the job full-time.
“For Deiter, if you’re going to be on in the morning, you gotta get on the clock better. We can’t start at 10:08 AM. You get a false start right away.”
It is unclear what Murphy’s role with KNBR will be going forward. The station has removed him from its website, and he has yet to comment publicly about his future. Kurtenbach said this morning he would host the morning timeslot for the remainder of the week.
NASCAR President ‘Can’t Overstate’ Importance of New TV Deal
“Everyone talks about getting younger and we’re no different…We have, but we have to keep going…”
Yesterday, NASCAR announced a new television deal with 10 races split between new partners Amazon Prime Video and TNT. NASCAR President Steve Phelps says you can’t overstate the importance of new partnerships.
In an interview with Sports Business Journal, Phelps admitted the agreements with TNT — and it’s Max streaming service — and Amazon Prime Video are focused on reaching a younger audience.
“I don’t think you can overstate how important it is,” Phelps said. “Everyone talks about getting younger and we’re no different. Have we had success over the last three years getting younger and more diverse? We have, but we have to keep going and we have to meet those potential fans where they are, whether that’s our Netflix show that’s going to come out early next year or what’s going to happen with here.
“Amazon is going to do some different content-related things going into 2025 and … our expectation is Warner Bros. Discovery is going to plug us into Bleacher Report, House of Highlights, and other channels that will start to promote NASCAR. Because, honestly, we haven’t had a lot of that. Now they’re a partner and see us as a partner and there’s going to be a mandate to promoting NASCAR, and that to me is really important and it speaks to the changing landscape of where media consumption is going specifically.”
Phelps continued by saying it was “one of the most important, if not the most important” contracts of his career, noting that the new deal was about more than just money.
“It was critical – even past dollars. Are they important? Of course, but it’s really about having these distribution outlets that are just incredible. The reach these five companies have is incredible.”
SiriusXM and MLB Sign Extension Through 2028
“We’re very proud to continue Baseball’s rich history of reaching fans through their radios.”
SiriusXM and Major League Baseball have announced an extension of their partnership that goes through the 2028 MLB season.
Every MLB game will remain available to SiriusXM subscribers on their car radios and in the SiriusXM app. The new deal also ensures that MLB Network Radio will continue through the 2028 season.
“We’re very proud to continue Baseball’s rich history of reaching fans through their radios. Today, we’re delivering those fans the sounds of the game through SiriusXM’s state-of-the-art platforms in the car and on the SiriusXM app,” said SiriusXM President and Chief Content Officer Scott Greenstein.
“Being able to hear their team’s announcers is important to fans, and no matter where you are listening from across North America, you’ll get access to every team’s broadcast for every game on SiriusXM. Couple this with the best daily talk and analysis of the game on the MLB Network Radio channel and SiriusXM is a must-have for baseball fans, and will be for years to come.”
The new agreement continues the relationship between SiriusXM and MLB that dates back to the 2005 season.
“The collection of MLB game presentations and content that has developed through our extended relationship with SiriusXM has been a powerful asset in making our game more accessible to fans wherever they are,” said MLB Executive Vice President of Media & Business Development Kenny Gersh.
“The sounds of Baseball are an important part of our story and we’re proud to continue to work with SiriusXM as they advance and grow the MLB streaming experience for fans on their platforms.”