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Gary Gerould To Call TV Games For Sacramento Kings

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Earlier this month the Sacramento Kings parted ways with their longtime TV announcer Grant Napear, but with the 2019-20 season set to restart, the team announced Gary Gerould will handle television play-by-play responsibilities in the interim. 

Gerould, the Kings longtime radio voice will transition to the TV broadcast for the season’s remaining eight games which will begin around July 30 from the NBA bubble in Orlando. Certainly not new to the Kings and their fanbase, the 79-year old Gerould has called 2,769 games for the team’s flagship radio station 1140 KHTK. From 1994-98 he also worked as their TV play-by-play voice.

Napear resigned from his role with the Kings amid controversy for responding to the Black Lives Matter movement with “all lives matter” during a Twitter exchange with NBA center DeMarcus Cousins. In addition to resigning from the Kings, Napear also departed his afternoon radio show on 1140 KHTK. Napear’s former television and radio partner, Doug Christie will continue his analyst role alongside interim TV play-by-play voice Gary Gerould. Gerould and Christie will call the remainder of the 2019-20 season remotely for NBC Sports California. 

“I am so pleased to have this opportunity and excited to be alongside Doug to call the team’s return to the court in Orlando,” Gerould said in the press release. “It is an absolute joy to return to the game I love and welcome the challenge of once again calling Kings action on TV. I am grateful to the organization for entrusting me to resume the season and deeply appreciative to all the Kings fans for their tremendous support over the years.”

With Gerould moving to TV for the rest of the 2019-20 season, it creates a void on KHTK’s Kings radio coverage. Replacing the longtime radio voice in the interim will be Jason Ross. Ross has contributed to the Kings radio team for 25 years in various roles, most recently serving as the broadcast’s pre, halftime and postgame host. 

The Kings plan to conduct a formal search to find their permanent TV play-by-play announcer prior to the 2020-21 NBA season.

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Dick Vitale’s Season Is Over As He Continues Recovery

“According to Dick Vitale, his doctors have told him that the chemotherapy he has received has worked as hoped.”

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Dick Vitale has come to the conclusion that he likely needs surgery to deal with Dysplasia and ulcerated lesions of the vocal cords. Before that can happen though, the ESPN college basketball analyst needs to continue resting. That means his season is over.

Vitale made the announcement on ESPN’s PR site, Front Row on Monday.

“You know I am an eternal optimist who acts like he’s a teenager,” he wrote. “Yet there is no doubt these past five months have been emotionally and physically frustrating. I am so appreciative of the love and care demonstrated by the incredible members of the medical community. And I will be forever grateful for the calls, texts, and social media expressions of encouragement from friends, colleagues, fans, media and members of my ESPN family. I love people, and I’m honored to receive such overwhelming support.”

According to Dick Vitale, his doctors have told him that the chemotherapy he has received has worked as hoped. The three weeks between the last time he called a game and receiving the news that his season was likely over also played a role in his recovery he says.

“I will continue to provide updates as I go along, and I am firm in my belief that I will win this battle and be back doing what I love – calling games at courtside next season. In the meantime, I will enjoy all the great games from my living room and savor the love of my marvelous family. Thank you all,” Vitale added.

He only called two games during this season, but they were huge matchups. The crowd also reacted in a big way, giving Vitale prolonged ovations.

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Stephen A. Smith Loves SNL’s ‘First Take’ Spoof: ‘This Is Hilarious’

“I haven’t laughed that hard about SNL in 20 years.”

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ESPN’s First Take was the subject of a recent Saturday Night Live skit and even though it didn’t make the final cut for broadcast on NBC, the sketch did circulate on social media Monday.

The sketch had hosts Stephen A. Smith and Michael Irvin debate whether Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady was “exceptional or very exceptional” before transitioning to a debate about apples or oranges. Moderator Molly Qerim wasn’t spared either, as she made sure to remind viewers how much time was left in the show.

Stephen A. tweeted the skit out offering an initial reaction before reacting further in a short break on Monday’s show (via Mediaite).

Smith was portrayed by cast member Chris Redd and gave props to him and Kenan Thompson, who played Irvin. (Chloe Gardner played Qerim.) Stephen A. also suggested people check out Redd’s imitation of new New York City Mayor Eric Adams.

“I haven’t laughed that hard about SNL in 20 years,” said Smith. “He did me well, but I’m telling y’all right now, that brother Chris Redd imitating the new mayor of New York Mayor Eric Adams, I promise y’all it’s must-see. Trust me on that.”

All in good fun and even though the skit didn’t make it to air, it was well-received online and by the First Take crew.

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Jim Nantz Believes Ryan Fitzpatrick Has Future In TV

“I’ve always said that is a guy that will be, if he wants to be, a great piece of television talent down the road.”

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Every network is usually out there looking to find the former athlete who can have success in a second career as a broadcaster or a TV analyst. For Jim Nantz, he believes there is one quarterback out there that, if he wants a job in the business, would be the perfect guy for it.

During an appearance on the Sports Illustrated Media Podcast with Jimmy Trainathe name that Nantz mentioned was Ryan Fitzpatrick. He said his favorite thing about Super Wild Card Weekend was seeing Fitzpatrick with fans at the game for Buffalo’s playoff win over New England:

“My favorite thing I saw all weekend was Ryan Fitzpatrick,” Nantz told Traina. “What he did was one of the great validations for us fans that these guys actually care. We always want them to be one of us and we know they are getting paid a lot of money to play these games and play for our team, but do they really care? What does it mean to them?

“His [Fitzpatrick’s] journey has taken him to a lot of stops around the league. There he is, sub-zero wind chill factor, shirtless, man of the people, sitting in the stands cheering full-throated lustily for the Bills. That felt good. The fan side of me loved it. I just thought it said so much about him.”

While Nantz isn’t sure what Fitzpatrick has planned for his future after football, he thinks whatever the Harvard alum with the notable beard wants to do, it will be great.

“I don’t know what his second act is going to be, but I am going to predict it’s going to be huge,” Nantz said.

“There’s something about him. I’ve gotten to know him virtually every stop along the way in his NFL career and maybe he’s not even finished playing, but he wasn’t doing that to try to generate attention. He probably didn’t know the guy who shot that was going to post it. That’s Ryan Fitzpatrick. He has always had a way with a sense of humor and a way with phrasing things.”

One of the qualities that Nantz likes about Fitzpatrick is how real of a person he is and he would vouch for him if somebody asked:

“I’ve always said that is a guy that will be, if he wants to be, a great piece of television talent down the road,” said Nantz. “That’s there if he wants it. I would definitely make a run at him if somebody ever asked me. Maybe there’s something else he wants to do, but the thing is he is very real and that is a quality that’s worth a lot.” 

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