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John Hadley Named Program Director of 590 The Fan

Jason Barrett

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Over the past year, John Hadley has kept a low profile in St. Louis. He directed his energies towards his network television sports consultancy, after being fired by the Big 550 as the station’s Sports Director and evening sports host. KTRS management took exception to an on-air political commentary Hadley delivered, and decided to terminate their relationship after 16 years together.

“The problem with being around very rich white people is they really don’t have a clue,” Hadley said on 550’s airwaves last February. “There are people in the great state of Florida who actually are supportive of Donald Trump. There’s only one reason that you’re voting for this guy. You are either a moron, a racist, a bigot or clueless — maybe everything. This guy is the biggest joke to come down the pike, just laughable.”

But wounds heal with time, and Hadley is getting an opportunity to return to the St. Louis sports radio scene by joining 590 The Fan as the station’s program director. With owner Randy Merkel looking to sell the company to Tim McKernan who hosts the morning show and oversees all other aspects of the company, bringing in a trusted hand with local market experience was important for McKernan.

“It was stretching me too thin, and it was not the most optimal way to operate the business,” McKernan told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. “My goal is to be able to focus on (the morning show) and starting my podcast, which I plan to begin when we move into our new studios in Kirkwood”.

To help firm up the station’s business, market veteran Dave Greene was added as KFNS’ general manager/sales manager, and with Hadley now on board, the station will have people in key positions to help ease the burden on McKernan and grow the overall business.

“I’m jumping to be part of a team that can be a legitimate factor,” Hadley told the Dispatch. “I think this station is much better than it’s given credit for. It’s just a matter of fine tuning.”

The first step for Hadley will be to stabilize the station’s afternoon show. The plan going forward is to air the program at 3pm CT and feature Cam Janssen and T.J. Moe, along with Matt Whitener. Eric Messersmith who had worked on the show previously will move to weeknights 6p-8p with Matt Berger, and Charlie “Tuna” Edwards moves up from late nights to 8p-10p.

Although he won’t occupy a regular on-air role at the station, Hadley says it is possible that he’ll fill in if needs arise. While many may view this move as his chance to rehabilitate his career, he says that it’s the furthest thing from the truth. The real motivation behind his decision to accept the opportunity he says was his belief in ownership’s vision, and his confidence and determination to help revive KFNS’ image.

Sports Radio News

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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Sports Radio News

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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Sports Radio News

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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