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Adam Silver Tells Keyshawn, JWill & Zubin NBA Will Get Back to Regular Schedule

Silver appeared on ESPN Radio to discuss the league before the playoffs begin.

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Courtesy: Getty/Takashi Aoyama

Don’t get comfortable with the pandemic-induced NBA schedule. Commissioner Adam Silver joined ESPN Radio’s “Keyshawn, JWill & Zubin” on Friday to discuss the state of the league and what the 2021-22 season schedule is looking like as the playoffs get set to tip-off on Saturday. The commissioner confirmed the league is starting the season at a mid-October date to get back on track.

“We are going to have to do a shorter offseason,” Silver said on the show. “A bit of a shorter offseason if we are going to get back on schedule because if we start late and then go late again next summer, this will just continue.”

The NBA was going to start this current season in mid to late January, but the bills came due from their respective media rights partners. ESPN especially did not want to lose out on the marquee Christmas Day lineup, so they opened the 72-game slate on Dec. 22. Media partners have decided one schedule has a clear advantage over the other.

“We think in terms of fan interest, what our television partners are telling us is we are better off completing our finals by the end of June,” Silver said. “We need to start in mid-October, and that goes to my point about 72 games versus 82 games. We’ve looked at other links in the regular season; we will continue to do so.”

Silver made it clear they don’t see the normal schedule returning with a reduction in games.

“Based on the evidence from this season I don’t think that’s a strong argument to go to fewer regular-season games. Look it’s not a secret; it obviously is a business, that’s a reduction revenue.”

Silver concluded by saying mid to late October is the target date to begin the 2021-22 season. Fans can catch “KJZ” weekday mornings from 6-10 a.m. ET on ESPN Radio.

Sports Radio News

Brent Musburger: Jon Gruden Was Victim Of ‘Professional Hit Job’

“Brent Musburger stopped short of defending Gruden’s actual comments.”

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Legendary play-by-play man Brent Musburger believes now-former Las Vegas Raiders head coach Jon Gruden should’ve been punished for his behavior uncovered in an NFL investigation. He said Gruden didn’t deserve to be chased out of town though.

In a recent interview with J.T. The Brick, the Raiders’ lead broadcaster said Gruden was made the scapegoat of the investigation into the Washington Football Team and owner Daniel Snyder by a “paid assassin.”

Musburger added it was a “professional hit job” by the way the story came to light. Details of emails Gruden sent years earlier, which contained racist and misogynistic comments, were first laid out in a Wall Street Journal article before everything was more broadly presented in the New York Times.

Brent Musburger stopped short of defending Gruden’s actual comments. He did say a suspension of some kind seemed warranted more than being fired only a few years into his deal with the Raiders.

Jon Gruden has since hired a team of lawyers to sue the NFL. He believes it was someone within the league that ultimately ended his career.

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Sports Radio News

Ready, Fire, Aim!

“Whatver good came from procastination?”

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Tri Star Pictures

Ready. Fire. Aim.

I have used this phrase and attitude many times in my sports radio selling career. For years, people used the exact words in another more familiar order, specifically to shoot a gun: Ready. Aim. Fire. 

The 'Ready, FIRE, Aim' Approach to Turnarounds Never Works - Tony Pashigian

Get it?

In 1982, one of the best business books ever written, In Search of Excellence, was published by Tom Peters and Robert Waterman. Peters and Waterman worked in the San Francisco office of McKinsey Consulting. Peters traveled the world and talked to the best companies. He was on a mission to learn about ‘organization effectiveness’ and ‘implementation issues.’ He found that what he saw had a profound impact on how companies focused primarily on organization and strategy suffered compared to those who dove in on activity and culture. He also wrote a bestseller and game-changer. He also came up with Ready, Fire. Aim. 

What’s your style? 

When your company launches a new digital package or NTR sponsorship, do you wait around until forced to pitch it a few times? Or, do you toss it out to some clients who should be open to the idea and then figure it out as you go? Peters would argue you should experiment more aimlessly.

Whatver good came from procastination? To get me out of a rut, I will ask myself what the worst thing that can happen from asking a client to try a new idea is? 

They say no.

Okay, on the other hand, they could say YES. Or, at the minimum, appreciate that you are keeping them up to date with the latest opportunities in the market. Often I will take this approach to oversized packages. Let’s say the station has an NTR project like a concert, sports fair, or event. The title sponsorship package is two times what your best clients have ever spent with you in a single month. Rather than sit around and get a new prospect list ready and customize a package with price-sensitive elements or whatever other excuses I can think of, I take action. I FIRE.

I will call my client, who may get sticker shock, and say, “I want to show you this sponsorship because even if it isn’t a fit for you, you will know what XYZ or ABC competitor is spending and what they got.” I have been amazed at how a few of them have reacted. Out of the blue, they step up and buy to be the big shot in the market. Or, based on their feedback, I learn what they want and pivot and sell them a lower package or some additional program. I AIM after my initial meeting. 

click here to Buy-Now-Button • Karenville

Would you please go back and rethink how you can change your approach at whatever you know you should be doing? Are you spending too much time staying comfortable and playing the what-if game?  Forget about it. When you are working on your 2022 budget, and deciding which clients can up their spending, get ready, FIRE, and then aim. 

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Sports Radio News

Tiki & Tierney Leaving CBS Sports Radio For WFAN

“Adding Tiki and Tierney is just the latest in a series of changes for WFAN.”

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CBS Sports Radio

Tiki & Tierney are based in New York. Now they will be broadcasting to New York. The show is leaving CBS Sports Radio’s afternoon drive slot. It will move into mid days on WFAN.

The duo should be a good fit for New York sports fans. Tiki Barber is one of the best-known New York Giants of the early 2000s. Brandon Tierney is a Brooklyn native now and familiar voice to New Yorkers, having worked for years at ESPN New York in addition to other stations in various markets across the country. The duo has been together since the launch of CBS Sports Radio, having spent time in both drive slots for the network.

“Tiki and Tierney have a perspective and sound that is tailor-made for New York City and their addition will further solidify WFAN’s iconic position as the area’s most influential sports platform,” said Chris Oliviero, Senior Vice President and Market Manager, Audacy New York. “Both are already very familiar to the FAN audience, so their voices joining “Boomer & Gio” and “Carton & Roberts” creates a powerful must listen to our weekday lineup for both listeners and advertisers.”    

A new show means the old one has to go. Moose and Maggie had been holding down the mid day slot on WFAN. No official word is available on Maggie Gray’s or Marc Malusis’s future with WFAN or Audacy. Andrew Marchand reports that Gray is expected to have a different role within the company.

Gray did acknowledge on-air and online that Thursday was her last day as part of Moose and Maggie.

Adding Tiki and Tierney is just the latest in a series of changes for WFAN. In less than a month, the station has said goodbye to Steve Somers and added Keith McPherson in the nighttime hours. Sal Licata has also seen his overnight show extended.

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