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Radio Show Helped OC With UFC

Jason Barrett

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ou probably haven’t heard of UFC Fight Night 43 fighter Sean O’Connell, and if things don’t go his way on Saturday night, you might never hear of him again. That’s the harsh reality of MMA, but O’Connell wouldn’t have it any other way.

“I just want people to know that this is a sport of love, and it’s one of the few ones left in the professional sporting world where you actually have to love the grind and love what you’re doing,” O’Connell told MMAjunkie. “The money isn’t enough to justify getting yourself punched in the face all the time and putting your body and your health at risk.

“I hope that every fighter gets respect from people because it’s one of the last bastions of true athleticism in the professional sporting world. It’s not about chasing that contract and chasing that money. It’s about achieving a dream.”

For O’Connell, that dream has been years in the making. Growing up, his passion was football, but like so many other professional fighters, watching the first season of “The Ultimate Fighter” proved a transformative experience.

“I realized those guys weren’t necessarily any better athletes than I was,” O’Connell said. “They were just tough and willing to push themselves. I remember Chris Leben doing a treadmill test on the show, and no one else could do it. He didn’t look like anything special in terms of being an athlete. He’s just got the mental fortitude of going when everyone else was like, ‘I’m done.’ That impressed me.

“I was always a tougher guy than I was truly an athlete, so I was like, ‘I think I’m tough. I think I can do this.’”

The rush of competition helped fill a hole left by the close of a college football career that saw O’Connell transfer between three different schools while looking for an opportunity to secure playing time.

“I was doing rec center cardio kickboxing classes in the offseasons to stay in shape,” Rosholt said. “I was a decent wrestler in high school, but I didn’t take it overly seriously. I was one of those knuckleheads who thought football was my future. Hindsight being 20/20, I should have been a lot more serious about wrestling because I’m 30 years old and I’m still wrestling every damned day.”

O’Connell began his professional MMA career in 2007 and slowly worked his way up the regional scene. He had an early brush with the UFC, falling short in an elimination-round fight to qualify for “The Ultimate Fighter 8.” Still, he remained focused on his goal of competing in the sport’s biggest promotion, even as a career in sports radio began to flourish.

“That’s my big-boy job,” O’Connell joked. “Fighting is my dream.”

O’Connell’s “big-boy job” would eventually get him back in front of the UFC, when he was able to book UFC President Dana White on his San Francisco-area show.

“The UFC was doing their big media tour, and we had Dana White on my show,” O’Connell said. “We asked him the typical questions. My co-host didn’t know a damn thing about MMA, so he was like, ‘What should we ask him?’ I gave him a few questions he could ask, but I was like, ‘I’m going to ask him for a contract.’ My boss was like, ‘You really are?’ I told him, ‘The worst-case scenario is he tells me I’m an idiot, and it’s good radio. Everyone driving in their car will get a laugh.’

“So I was like, ‘When you’re doing this media stuff, have you ever had anyone ask you for a contract.’ Dana laughed, and I was like, ‘No, I’m serious. I’m 14-4. I’m on a five-fight winning streak. I train under Jeremy Horn. I was on Season 8 of ‘The Ultimate Fighter,’ but I lost my fight to get into the house. I’m a prospect. I want a fight.’ He was just like, ‘Huh? Are you being serious? Alright, when we get off the phone, I’m going to give you (UFC matchmaker) Joe Silva’s number. He’ll check you out, and we’ll see what happens.’”

For the rest of the story visit MMA Junkie where this story was first published

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Jonathan Zaslow No Longer With WQAM

An attempt to reach out to Zaslow for comment went unanswered.

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WQAM midday host Jonathan Zaslow is no longer with WQAM in Miami.

The radio station has removed his show from the website and references to him and his normal 10a-2p ET midday timeslot program have been scrubbed from the station website.

Zaslow tweeted at 5:19p ET confirming the news.

Whether or not this has any effect on his involvement with the Miami Heat broadcasts is unknown as of now.

Zaslow had been with 790 the Ticket since 2004. He was transitioned from Audacy-owned 790 to sister station AM 560 Sports WQAM last October. During his tenure he has worked with a number of established local voices including Joy Taylor, Amber Wilson, Brett Romberg, and Brendan Tobin amongst others.

WQAM has gone thru a number of changes, including a rebranding effort to call the station “560 The Joe”. That ended last year with the station returning to the AM 560 Sports WQAM brand listeners were more familiar with. What they have planned next in Zaslow’s timeslot is unclear but local listeners will likely get some answers next week.

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Vanessa Richardson Named Houston Rockets Sideline Reporter, Paul Gallant to Host Solo on ESPN 97.5

Vanessa Richardson will be on the sidelines for the Houston Rockets and Paul Gallant will host solo show on ESPN 97.5.

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Vanessa and Gallant

Changes are taking place in Houston sports media. First, the Houston Rockets will have a new television sideline reporter this season, and she’s a familiar name to Houston sports fans.

Vanessa Richardson, the now former co-host of ESPN 97.5’s Vanessa and Gallant, revealed that she will be on the sidelines for the NBA franchise covering the team for AT&T SportsNet Southwest.

She tweeted the news saying, “Elated to be the new Houston Rockets sideline reporter! I can’t wait to travel the country & share the stories of this dynamic team during 80+ games on AT&T SportsNet Southwest. I’ll continue to fill-in as a host/reporter for Astros broadcasts as well.”

Richardson’s co-host, Paul Gallant, tweeted that with Richardson leaving the show for the Rockets sideline gig, Vanessa and Gallant will become the Paul Gallant Show. The solo show led by Gallant begins Monday September 26th.

“We’re excited to have Paul host his own show”, said Todd Farquharson, General Manager of ESPN 97.5 & 92.5.  “He’s super creative, energetic, and likeable.  He’ll get the audience involved and have fun.”

Paul commented, “You know what I’ve always loved about sports talk radio?  That it’s interactive.  Whether through a phone call, text message, tweet or on Twitch, it’s the best place for sports fans to come together and celebrate…or vent.  And that’s what The Paul Gallant Show is going to be…Houston’s platform to talk about its teams. THE most interactive sports talk show in Houston.”

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Ken Carman: Al Michaels ‘Feels Untethered’ On Amazon Prime Video

“The thing that stuck out was Kirk Herbstreit ripping the elf,” said Carman. “Don’t be ripping Brownie the Elf, man.”

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The Cleveland Browns defeated the Pittsburgh Steelers during Thursday Night Football on Amazon Prime Video. 92.3 The Fan morning host Ken Carman applauded Al Michaels for his performance during the presentation.

“Al Michaels feels untethered for the first time. He’s not network television anymore and he can say whatever he wants. We interviewed him on the pregame show and I was nervous,” Carman said.

“He’s a legend,” co-host Anthony Lima added.

During the final play of the game, the Steelers fumbled a lateral into the endzone which the Browns recovered to make the final score 29-17. Michaels said “that may be meaningful to some of you. And you know who I mean”, alluding to people who had placed wagers on the game.

Carman, who hosts two-hours of pre-game coverage on the Browns Radio Network, continued to discuss how nervous he was interviewing Michaels. He also discussed how impressive Amazon’s behind-the-scenes production was, pointing out the only football broadcast with more cameras is the Super Bowl. More than 400 people work behind the scenes for Amazon Prime Video.

“The thing that stuck out was Kirk Herbstreit ripping the elf,” said Carman. “Don’t be ripping Brownie the Elf, man.”

Carman later said people angry that Michaels misspoke by saying the Pro Football Hall of Fame is “down I-71” instead of I-77 were unreasonable, and joked “Al Michaels hasn’t been on a highway in 20 years”.

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