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FOX Worried John Madden Wouldn’t Appear In All Madden Doc

“Zynotz, Santos, and Rinaldi were not entirely sure they could get him to appear on camera and share his memories of his impact on the broadcasting world.”

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Richie Zyontz is the man that deserves credit for getting the ball rolling on a documentary honoring the impact John Madden had on the game of football long after his retirement. Zynotz is the lead NFL producer for FOX Sports. He also happens to be one of Madden’s very best friends.

The two text daily. Madden introduced Zynotz to the woman he would go on to marry in a ceremony that happened at the former Raider coach’s home with the man himself standing by Zynotz’s side as his best man.

While Joel Santos and Tom Rinaldi are credited as co-producers and co-directors of All Madden, the documentary that will air on Christmas Day on FOX, it was Richie Zyontz that approached FOX Sports boss Eric Shanks with the idea.

“I had thought about this for a long time and it bothers me that people think history began last year or last week,” he told The Athletic’s Richard Deitsch. “Flavors of the day come and go, but Madden is a giant who forever changed the way sports are presented on TV. Shanks loves and respects John as much as I do, so it took no convincing.”

One person that did take some convincing was Madden himself. The former coach was always willing to be a part of the project. Zynotz, Santos, and Rinaldi were not entirely sure they could get him to appear on camera and share his memories of his impact on the broadcasting world.

“We knew John would cooperate, but would he participate?” Rinaldi said. “It was a huge question for us. Would he sit for an interview, the first lengthy on-camera interview of any kind in well more than a decade, essentially since he left the stage? When you’re fixed in the public’s mind for so long looking and sounding a certain way, you’re almost not permitted to age and only because you’re fixed in this one image.”

“He hadn’t been on camera in eight or nine years, and while that mind remains a steel trap, he has hearing issues and his voice understandably isn’t as strong as the voice we all remember,” Zynotz added.

The crew started with an introductory visit just to get John Madden reminiscing and telling stories. They wanted him to be comfortable with his ability to speak on some of the topics that they wanted to hear him address.

After that, filming sessions began. Rinaldi notes that some tweaking had to be done, but in the end, he thinks the audience will be very satisfied with the version of John Madden they see and hear.

“One of the challenges of the interview is John’s voice,” Rinaldi continued. “At times at the end of a longer answer, it wouldn’t be as strong as it was at the start of the answer. So he would take a drink or have lozenges and things like that. We’ve since gone up and had a few short audio sessions with John to have him amplify a particular answer. But overall, I think everyone who has seen and heard John, they’d say that’s John Madden.”

A special treat for Madden himself will be hearing from participants just how much he has impacted the NFL. The crew filmed 38 interviews for the documentary. No one they asked turned them down and they had every one of them deliver a personal message to the former coach and broadcasting icon.

Those messages have been cut together into a 50-minute montage that will be delivered to John Madden on Christmas Day so that he can watch them with his family.

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Warriors Fans Throw Objects At Charles Barkley On Inside the NBA Set

“Barkley yelled back at the crowd but never actually left the set.”

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TNT/Larry Brown Sports

Charles Barkley is no stranger to being the object of fans’ ire. The cities of San Antonio and Cleveland have a history of being the butt of the Round Mound of Rebound’s jokes. Thursday night in San Francisco, fans of the Warriors took things to a different level, throwing objects at Barkley on the Inside the NBA set.

The TNT studio show was broadcasting live from outside the Chase Center. The crowd chanted “Chuck, you suck!” at Barkley before the game. After Golden State clinched a birth in the NBA Finals, things got physical.

Fans threw things at the set, including a rolled-up t-shirt, which hit Charles Barkley in the back of the head. That resulted in Barkley leaving his seat and bowing up to the audience.

“Come on Chuck!” Ernie Johnson pleaded as Kenny Smith repeatedly said “Sit down Chuck.”

Barkley yelled back at the crowd but never actually left the set.

Now that the Western Conference Finals are over, TNT’s NBA schedule has concluded. That doesn’t mean Charles Barkley won’t return to San Francisco for the NBA Finals, but it is highly unlikely given the reception he has received there.

Barkley spent most of the postseason telling Golden State fans they were annoying and need to shut up and saying the city of San Francisco has “dirty ass streets”.

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Jon Miller To Call MLB Sunday Leadoff Game On Peacock

“According to a press release, Jason Benetti has a scheduling conflict.”

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Rich Eisen Show

Legendary play-by-play man Jon Miller will be returning to the national broadcast booth on Sunday. He will call the San Francisco Giants vs. Cincinnati Reds game for Peacock. He’ll be joined in the booth by Barry Larkin and Shawn Estes.

According to a press release, Jason Benetti has a scheduling conflict. Benetti, the regular play-by-play voice of Peacock’s MLB Sunday Leadoff, is also the television voice of the Chicago White Sox. NBC Sports Chicago has prioritized this weekend’s series between the White Sox and Cubs, making Benetti unavailable to the national broadcast.

Miller has been calling Giants games since 1997 and previously shared the Sunday Night Baseball booth on ESPN with hall of famer Joe Morgan.

The broadcast, called MLB Sunday Leadoff, will begin at 11 a.m. with pregame coverage hosted by Ahmed Fareed. The game broadcast begins at 11:30 a.m.

The game will take place in an exclusive two-hour broadcast window prior to the start of the rest of the league’s day of games.

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Amazon Eyeing Pat McAfee For Thursday Night Football Megacast

“No deal is done yet. A source tells McCarthy that it hinges on McAfee’s very busy schedule, but a Megacast is appealing to the former punter.’

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First it was the Mannings. Now it’s McAfee. Michael McCarthy of Front Office Sports reports that Pat McAfee could be at the center of an alternate broadcast of Thursday Night Football on Amazon in the 2022 season.

No deal is done yet. A source tells McCarthy that it hinges on McAfee’s very busy schedule, but a Megacast is appealing to the former punter.

Rumors of Amazon’s interest in McAfee began to bubble up last month. While he never directly addressed them, he did make mention on his show that he was “up to something” and insinuated that Amazon wasn’t the only company he was talking to.

McAfee has said on his show in the past that he wants to be part of an NFL broadcast. However, he is firm in that it would not be in the broadcast booth.

“I can’t call games. Not yet,” McAfee said on a show in February. “Have to be done with this show to call games. Because that’s like a 3-day, 4-day thing.” 

In addition to his daily show, McAfee is also committed to the WWE. He is on the road for Smackdown every Friday.

There is no word on exactly what a Pat McAfee-centered broadcast would look like. When reports first came out regarding discussions with McAfee, Ryan Glasspiegel of The New York Post reported that moving The Pat McAfee Show to Amazon was on the table. If that happens, it would make sense to use his entire crew on the Thursday Night Football presentation.

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