BACK IN THE BOX! Returned last season as the host of "the Penalty Box", the post game call in show for Rochester Americans broadcasts on Sports 1280 WHTK, as well as studio host for game broadcasts and intermission updates. Looking forward to starting a second straight season this upcoming year.
Weekend morning newscaster on WHAM.
Sometime fill in host for Bob Matthews or John DiTullio, as well as hosting call-in shows during Yankees and Red Wings rain delays.
Graduated from West Irondequoit high school (in 1984) where I was the sports director at the student run radio station, WIRQ, as well as the "voice of the Indians" football and basketball radio broadcasts.
Graduated with a B.A. degree from Florida Southern College (in1988). Announced FSC basketball games on local cable TV. Also announced local high school football games on local cable TV.
Have worked for WBBF-AM, WPXY-AM, Sportsradio 990, and then moved on to Clear Channel in 1997, where I have worked for WHAM and WHTK since as a board operator, producer, newscaster, traffic reporter, weatherman and sports host, as well as all-around good guy.
I am also psyched to be back on the air hosting "the Penalty Box", the post game call in show for the Rochester Americans radio broadcasts on 107--3 FM and 1280 AM.
I recently also started reading newscasts on Newsradio 1180, WHAM. It is a good opportunity for me, although I never saw myself as a "news guy". I am still enjoying the opportunity.
Have you heard about the latest brou-ha-ha involving NBA commissioner David Stern? Steen was a guest on the Jim Rome show, heard on sports 1280 WHTK every weekday from noon to three. It was on a couple of days ago.
Everything was hunky dory until Jim Rome brought up the NBA draft lottery. He asked if it was fixed so that the New Orleans Hornets, owned by the NBA (who are in the process of a sale), could get the top pick, which would in turn help the sale price. Rome said callers to his his show have been questioning whether that was a possibility. It wasn't directly accusatory.
Still, Stern bristled like a procupine. He said he resented the question. He said he was insulted by the accusation. He turned as icy as an avalanche. He accused Rome of "making his career out of asking sensational questions like that, which in turn, angered Rome.
It was an uncomfortable exchange tto listen to. It got far worse when Stern crossed the line. In the middle of the exchange, Stern asked Rome "Have your stopped beating your wife yet?".
It was truly a low blow. Stern was trying to get even with Rome for putting him in an untenable position, by returning the favor. It was an old debate trick. Verbal swordplay. Yet, it was mean-spirited and unfair.
That is because it is a question that cannot be answered by Rome. If he answered "yes", then the implication is that he had been beating his wife. If he answered "no", then the listener would assume that he was beating his wife. Rome took the high road, and disregarded the question, chiding Stern for being unfair. He was right.
Here is the transcript of the interview. If you have already seen it, scroll down. If you haven't, see for yourself:
Rome: Was the fix in for the lottery?
Stern:: You know, I have two answers for that. I’ll give you the easy one — no. And a statement: Shame on you for asking.
Rome: I understand why you would say that to me, and I wanted to preface it by saying it respectfully, but I think it’s my job to ask because I think people wonder.
Stern: No, it’s ridiculous, but that’s okay.
Rome: I know you think it’s ridiculous but I don’t think the question is ridiculous because I know people think that. I think it’s my job to ask that.
Stern: Have you stopped beating your wife yet? [remember that Stern is a lawyer. Basically, he’s not accusing Rome of actual abuse, he’s questioning he question in an aggressive manor.]
Rome: (Pause) I don’t know if that’s fair.
Stern: Why is that?
Rome: Because I think… I know you read your emails and I’m sure you follow things virally and on twitter — people really do think it. Whether it’s fair or not. You don’t think the question is fair to ask it if your fans believe it?
Stern: People think it because people like you ask silly questions. I expect it to be written about and all. Actually, I commented last night at my presser that there was one guy, who I won’t dignify by naming, who said “I have no reason to know anything, and I don’t know anything, but I tell you I believe it’s fixed.” Okay, that’s good. Why is that? Because if this team won it. But if that team won it it would have been fixed also. And if that team won it it would have been fixed also. And if every team was invited to have a representative there, and if four members of the media were invited to be there, and if Ernst & Young certified it, you still think? “Yes.”
Rome: I think two things and I want your response. First, I don’t think (it was rigged). I’m not covering myself, I don’t think so. But by asking the question it would not suggest that I think so. But the one thing I would say is the league does own the team (New Orleans). Does it not?
Rome: Does that not make the question fair?
Stern: I don’t think so. Number one we sold it, we’re going to close this week. We have already established our price. I think if it had gone to Michael Jordan, which was the next team up in terms of a high percentage, they would have said David is taking care of his friend Michael. And if it had gone to Brooklyn, which is going into Barclay Center, it would have been fair to speculate, I suppose, that we wanted to take Brooklyn off of the mat. So there was no winning…. But that’s not a question I’ve been asked before by a respectable journalist.
It was around this point that Stern said that Rome had made a career out of asking sensational questions. Rome disgreed and was clearly upset by it. I don't have a problem with Stern saying that though. I agree with him about that. Remember, Jim Rome was a barely known sports talk host when he had another famous confrontation with then Rams quarterback Jim Everett.
In a live TV interview on a cable sports show, Rome repeatedly called Everett "Chris", insinuating his was girly like Chris Evert, the tennis player. Everett said "if you call me "Chris" one more time, there was going to be a problem. Rome did of course, prompting Everett to attack Rome on stage and the two fell to the ground out of their chairs and wrestled until the crew intervened.
Ever since then, Rome has been a big star in the sports talk biz. Some have said the whole event was orchestrated and planned, but that has never been confirmed. Either way, there is no doubt it sent Rome on a path to stardom.
Rome can have a controversial style and never shies away from asking the tough questions, but it's not Jim Rome who is on trial here. It is David Stern, and deservedly so.
Stern has been a very good dommissioner. One of the best in all of sports. When he took over. the NBA was a smaller and more unkown league whose championship games used to be aired on tape delay after the late local news. Stern parlayed the Bird-Magic, Lakers-Celtics rivalry of the 80's into huge success and made the NBA a marketable commodity. He used Michael Jordan and the double threepeat Bulls to further expand on the league's popularity in the 90's. Now, I think Stern may have outlived his usefullness.
The NBA now has major problems with players salaries, and many teams losing money hand over fist. Stern has to understand that there are going to be questions about a league run lottery. He should have taken the high road and not been snarky. Now, if anything, I think more people have questions abouit this years legitimacy of the lottery than they may have had before. Stern acted like he had something to hide by acting like an insolent child in the Rome interview. Now, more attention has been drawn to the lottery than Stern wanted in the first place.
Stern should have known that. The fact that he didn't makes me think it may be time for him to step aside. Maybe a fresh perspective in the commissioners office is exactly what the NBA needs now.