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Jeff Pearlman: Quincy Isaiah ‘Oozes Magic Johnson’ In HBO’s ‘Winning Time’

My wife and I would watch him and be like, ‘Is that Magic? No, that’s Quincy playing Magic.’ … It’s one of the best pieces of casting I’ve ever seen in any TV show.”

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Winning Time: The Rise of the Lakers Dynasty, the series about the “Showtime”-era Los Angeles Lakers, is set to premiere on HBO Max March 6.

The series is based on Jeff Pearlman’s 2014 book, Showtime: Magic, Kareem, Riley, and the Los Angeles Lakers Dynasty of the 1980s, and in anticipation and promotion of the Winning Time premiere, the author is currently making the rounds to talk about the adaptation of his book and his experience watching it become a TV production.

Pearlman appeared on The Rich Eisen Show last week and spoke highly of the casting to guest host Suzy Shuster. Actors like John C. Reilly, Jason Clarke, and Adrien Brody are highly accomplished, award-winning actors. So you’d expect Pearlman to say they’re great in this series.

But the great unknown before Winning Time debuts is the performance of Quincy Isaiah as Earvin “Magic” Johnson. It’s a key role since the Lakers drafting Magic in 1979 tipped off the “Showtime” era. How much Isaiah is featured has yet to be seen, but he’s shown prominently in trailers for the series and looks the part, so it seems safe to assume viewers will see a lot of him.

Pearlman was extremely impressed by Isaiah, not just from his performance but by his life story, and thinks viewers are going to feel the same way when they watch.

“You watch him and he just oozes Magic Johnson,” said Pearlman. “It’s uncanny. My wife and I would watch him and be like, ‘Is that Magic? No, that’s Quincy playing Magic.’ They nail it. They just nail it. It’s one of the best pieces of casting I’ve ever seen in any TV show ever. It just happens to be based on my book.”

Shuster teased Pearlman about naturally saying that everyone involved in Winning Time is great because the production is based on his book and he wants people to watch. Pearlman acknowledged that but said that if he didn’t think an actor’s performance was very good, he just wouldn’t say anything.

Winning Time: The Rise of the Lakers Dynasty, premieres on HBO Max Sunday, March 6.

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Bobby Belt: ‘Pat McAfee Butchered The Name Shan and RJ’

“I mean, it clearly says on the graphics ‘Shan and RJ’.”

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Shan and RJ is a show that routinely finds itself in the media spotlight. They may be a Dallas show, but when Jerry and Stephen Jones routinely appear on your airwaves, you are going to draw attention from outside of the market.

On Tuesday, Pat McAfee played a clip of the hosts talking to Jerry Jones. McAfee threw to the clip introducing the show as “Shan, RJ, and Chop.” On Wednesday morning, the 105.3 The Fan’s morning show had some fun with the former Colts punter’s struggles.

“There’s a lot to unpack here,” newly added co-host Bobby Belt said after listening to McAfee and his crew take three unsuccessful cracks at naming the show.

“Reggie made a good point yesterday when I was talking to him about this,” Belt said. “Reggie was like ‘I think McAfee was going to the clip, saw three faces and didn’t know a third name, and so he’s like ‘well, that must be RJ and Chop.’”

Belt delighted in the idea that in McAfee’s mind, RJ Choppy goes by “Chop” on air and even pointed out that one of the producers said that RJ “looks like a Chop.”

Pat McAfee called the show “Shan, RJ, and Chop,” “Shana, RJ and Chop,” and “Shannon and RJ” on different occasions according to Belt. He didn’t think it was disrespectful. He just didn’t understand how McAfee got it so wrong so often.

“They butchered this three ways to the weekend. I have no idea. I mean, it clearly says on the graphics ‘Shan and RJ’.”

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Cubs Radio Voice Pat Hughes Named 2023 Frick Award Winner

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Chicago Cubs radio voice Pat Hughes has been honored as the 2023 recipient of the Ford C. Frick Award.

The award is given annually for “excellence in broadcasting” by the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum.

“Known throughout the Midwest for his easy delivery and unparalleled knowledge, Pat Hughes has called some of the biggest moments in Cubs history and has provided the narrative for one of the most successful eras in the history of the franchise,” said National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum President Josh Rawitch. “Since arriving at Wrigley Field in 1996, Pat has served as the radio voice for nine postseason teams – matching an ardent fan base with his own passion in every broadcast. His reverence for baseball history and gift for storytelling have made him one of the game’s broadcast treasures.”

Hughes has spent more than 25 years as the voice of the Cubs, and is a nine-time winner of the Illinois Sportscaster of the Year Award. Earlier this year, Hughes found out on-air that he would be inducted into the Cubs Hall of Fame.

Hughes was previously a finalist for the award in 2016 and 2020.

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Craig Carton: Jon Heyman ‘No Longer An Insider’ After Aaron Judge Gaffe

“That’s a bad job. And all that is is a guy trying to get ahead of everybody else. He screwed the pooch. That’s embarrassing.”

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MLB Network Insider Jon Heyman erroneously reported that New York Yankees slugger Aaron Judge was signing with the San Francisco Giants in free agency yesterday, and the news was not well received by WFAN afternoon hosts Craig Carton and Evan Roberts.

After Heyman rescinded his original tweet saying “Arson Judge” appeared headed to the Giants, he resent a new one with the correct spelling. During the confusion, Roberts told producers to get Heyman — who is an Audacy contributor — on the phone, which Carton immediately shot down.

“No, we’re not putting him on the air,” Carton said. “I’m not putting him on the air. He doesn’t get a platform on this show. Listen, he made a deal with the devil when he took a job with The (New York) Post. That’s his business.”

While Carton and Roberts processed the news, producer Chris McMonigle said he was certain that Judge would be signing with the Giants, but that was not Heyman’s report, and would hold off until it was official.

Roberts mocked McMonigle by saying he was in denial. “He still hasn’t accepted that Jon Heyman knows what he’s talking about,” Roberts said. Moments later, McMonigle read Heyman’s follow up tweet apologizing for “jumping the gun”.

“That is a horrendous job by Jon Heyman,” Carton replied.

“Heyman’s done,” Roberts shouted. “Jon, what are we doing?”

“Heyman is no longer an insider,” Carton added. “That’s a bad job. And all that is is a guy trying to get ahead of everybody else. He screwed the pooch. That’s embarrassing.”

Carton later took umbrage with Heyman deleting his tweets.

“To play fans like that is absolutely unacceptable. It’s not right. Sorry. That’s because everyone’s gotta be first. God forbid someone else has it first. You’re a clown. Your entire career’s work has just been flushed down the toilet.”

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