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Craig Carton Says He Nearly Replaced Howard Stern

“A lot of names were discussed to replace Stern at the time, including Jon Stewart and Whoopi Goldberg, but Carton said the opportunity was his and he wanted it.”

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Craig Carton

Before Boomer and Carton, long before Carton and Roberts, the sports radio shock jock had an opportunity presented to him that likely would have negated his WFAN tenure. During last Friday’s celebratory show for morning producer Al Dukes, Craig Carton said he was offered the job to replace Howard Stern when the King of all Media moved to satellite.

Stern’s affiliates were split between a few hosts nationwide, but the most infamous one was Van Halen singer David Lee Roth, whose show filled stations in New York, Boston, Cleveland, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Dallas and South Florida. Popular radio disc jockey Rover replaced Stern in the Midwest and comedian Adam Carolla took over a few West Coast markets. 

A lot of names were discussed to replace Stern at the time, including Jon Stewart and Whoopi Goldberg, but Carton said the opportunity was his and he wanted it. Carton, who was hosting at NJ 101.5, would have been given Roth’s East Coast affiliates. 

NJ 101.5 was owned by Millennium Radio Group at the time and Carton remembered discussing the Stern deal with them saying, “if there’s anything you’re going to do to stop this, you gotta tell me now because I represented that you’re letting me go.” Carton said the company gave him the go ahead. 

He described it as a done deal, Craig Carton was going to replace Howard Stern. But on his way home from receiving the offer, Carton got an angry phone call. CBS Radio CEO Joel Hollander just received a fax saying, ‘if you want to hire Craig Carton, you have to give us [‘X’ amount of dollars].” Just like that, Carton was out, and Roth was soon to be in. 

Roth’s show was an epic failure, barely lasting three months. But taking over for Stern was a seemingly impossible task with unrealistic expectations, defining the sentiment that it’s always better to be the individual replacing the person who replaced the legend. 

When Carton told his now WFAN co-host Evan Roberts and update anchor Chris Lopresti the story, he spoke as if it was an obvious decision to want the opportunity to replace Stern, “why wouldn’t I?” he asked. Lopresti pushed back a bit, noting it probably would have ended poorly, but Carton said, “you didn’t see the check.” 

Less than two years later, Carton was back in discussions with CBS Radio about replacing a morning legend. This time, it was Stern’s rival Don Imus. Carton’s contract with NJ 101.5 was now closer to expiring and he made it clear he would never sign with them again, making him available to join CBS and WFAN to replace Imus.

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Damon Amendolara: Why Does Tom Brady Want To Call Games?

“I was just always convinced Tom Brady had bigger fish to fry than calling Cowboys, Commanders on Thanksgiving.”

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Tom Brady

Tom Brady is headed to FOX. According to Damon Amendolara, there is no question who is getting the better end of that deal.

The network’s interest in Brady has been well-known for months. Still, CBS Sports Radio’s morning man cannot believe it is actually happening. He said Tuesday morning that he can’t understand why Brady would want to pursue a media career after his playign days end.

“I was just always convinced Tom Brady had bigger fish to fry than calling Cowboys, Commanders on Thanksgiving,” Amendolara said. “I just always felt like Brady’s post-playing career was going to be pushing nutrition, pushing TB12 brand, pushing his apparel brand and doing kind of elite media work.”

A media career for Tom Brady is something Amendolara said he assumed would happen off-camera. He pointed to the Religion of Sport production studio Brady co-owns as an example of what he would expect Brady to want to be involved in.

Broadcasters work more Sundays during the NFL season than players do. No matter how good the games are, Damon Amendolara said that it is a grind he could not believe Tom Brady was willing to sign up for.

“They’ll get the number one games, but you still gotta do 17 or 18 of them before you get to the playoffs and not every one of them is a sizzler.”

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Ike Reese: ‘It’s Up To Us To Let Ray Didinger Stay Retired’

“I would imagine he’ll still watch a game still jotting down notes. There’s no way he’s gonna watch a game without doing his Ray Diddy thing.”

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Ray Didinger is feeling a lot of love from his WIP colleagues after announcing his retirement on Sunday. He will still be on the station through the end of the month, but on Monday, nearly the entire full-time air staff of the radio station was paying tribute to him.

Jon Marks and Ike Reese took time out of their afternoon drive show on Monday to replay Didinger’s announcement. Marks said that it was “as thoughtful as everything that he does.” He doesn’t doubt that Didinger is at peace with the decision.

Reese joked that it was good to hear PD Rod Lakin was not responsible for this. He also said that he was happy to hear that this was not a health-related retirement. According to the former Eagles linebacker though, that means it would be really easy for Didinger to want to abandon his plans if given the chance.

“We obviously know how much Ray Didinger means to us. And this WIP family, just like the Comcast Sports family I’m sure, is important to him,” Ike Reese said. “I’d imagine he would have a tough time saying no. That is why you leave it up to us to don’t bother him. Don’t put him in that position. Let him enjoy retirement.”

He knows that it will be hard for Didinger to not stay ready for a media appearance diuring the football season.

“I would imagine he’ll still watch a game still jotting down notes. There’s no way he’s gonna watch a game without doing his Ray Diddy thing.”

Both Marks and Reese said they hope that they would not hear from Didinger until at least the 2023 Eagles season and that Ray and his wife use that time to fully enjoy their new freedom.

Jon Marks reminded everyone that Ray Didinger is still an author with products to sell. If they really miss him, they can always go to a book signing.

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Mat Smith and Nate Jackson: ESPN Anger Over Nikola Jokic MVP ‘Is Garbage’

“He’s not as sexy as these other guys. But he does deserve the MVP, and shame on these guys to make it about them and their choices and their votes.”

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Denver Nuggets star Nikola Jokic has won the NBA MVP award for the second consecutive season. Jokic secured the award ahead of Philadelphia 76ers big man Joel Embiid.

ESPN NBA analysts Brian Windhorst and Tim Legler got the attention of Mat Smith and Nate Jackson on 104.3 The Fan in Denver Monday. Both Legler and Windhorst felt like Embiid was the MVP and sounded downright offended that he was not named the winner.

Legler said Embiid carried the Sixers and had a firm grip on the award from early February through the end of the regular season.

But Smith, who was filling in for Chad Brown on Monday, argued that the same things could be said for Jokic, adding that Jokic did more with less star power on the Nuggets roster. He didn’t understand how Embiid was Legler’s clear choice over Jokic.

“There’s so many different reasons why that specifically is garbage from Legler,” Smith said.

Jackson said Jokic is the Rodney Dangerfield of NBA players and made the point that it’s a continuation of a trend. For what ever reason, the national media overlooks the 27-year-old Serbian superstar.

“They don’t pay attention to it, they’re quick to write off this guy because they don’t appreciate his style of play,” he said. “He’s not as sexy as these other guys. But he does deserve the MVP, and shame on these guys to make it about them and their choices and their votes.”

Windhorst explained he went with Embiid based on what advanced statistics were saying. Smith said Windhorst basically laid out why Jokic was most deserving of MVP.

“He just gave every reason why Jokic should win and said, ‘Well I voted for Embiid, and I’m not taking it back,'” Smith said. He added that it was puzzling why so many voters were against Jokic. “These guys don’t like Joker. He’s not likable nationally, and why that is I’m not sure.”

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