Wednesday, July 9, 2008


Neil Best is working awfully hard on vacation. He has another post this morning from his Watchdog blog speculating about Mike Francesca potentially going to MSG. Best states that this is basically speculation built on more speculation built on some assumptions built on top of some maybe kind of facts, but we will go with it any way. I could see the pitch from MSG...

"Hey, Mike want to host this great show we have called MSGNY."
"It's a great show Mike, we are the only show where we do a story on the Knicks 8 game losing streak followed by a two segment interview with Dashboard Confessional (which we would love for you to do, Mike) and then followed by a piece on how Sean Avery is doing at his Vogue internship. It's great. Perfect for you.
"Does anyone watch this show?"
"One person?"
"Uh, besides the people in master control, um, yes, and actually this is great news, we did find out just yesterday that one person watches MSGNY. He lives in Hackensack. Stan, I believe his name is. He loves the show."
"What about Jim Dolan?"
"Great guy, terrific guy, love him. He's really a special man."
"Right. I mean, i need to be able to say what i want to say, I have to give my opinions. If i want to say that the Knicks are a travesty and that the owner is a farce and he has destroyed one of the premiere franchises in sports, can i say that?"
"Uh, Mike sure, you can say something to that effect like Wow, the Knicks didn't play terrific tonight and this franchise sure needs some sunny skies. But I know that Jim Dolan will do his best to make this team better. Of course you can say that."

Now, MSG could go with the sales pitch that bad sports teams use like the LA Clippers when trying to get free agents. "You are going to be the centerpiece of our franchise, we are going to build everything around you, etc." But that one didn't work so well on Elton Brand, did it? But maybe the big sell to Mike's ego could work, but I think the Dolan and not being allowed to be critical would be a HUGE problem for Mike. Neil Best is missing a major point by not mentioning that in his post.

We will see how this goes. Where do you think Francesca ends up?

July 8, 2008
Could Mike Francesa land at MSG? We'll see . . .
Before I begin, let's be clear on one thing: The information in this post did not come from a single person directly in a position to know, on or off the record, and thus must be considered informed speculation.
On the other hand, I would not be sharing it if I did not believe there was something to it, based on a rapidly growing pile of circumstantial evidence.
Here goes: If Mike Francesa does leave WFAN this summer (see post below), don't be surprised if MSG becomes a landing place.
What role would he play, exactly? Don't know. But the network could use a big-name boost in its battle to remain relevant in a market featuring two high-profile, baseball-oriented channels in YES and SNY.
Of course, Mike could end up staying at WFAN and Chris could leave, perhaps for satellite radio. But I still believe one of them will go.
If Francesa does end up at MSG, remember you read it here first. If not, forget it, it's just a blog!
(Full disclosure: Cablevision has an agreement to buy Newsday from Tribune, which would put MSG and WatchDog under the same corporate umbrella. But that has nothing to do with this post, because like I said, no one directly involved has told me anything. If they do, I'll write a newspaper article about it. Except that I'm on vacation . . . )
Posted by Neil Best on July 8, 2008 9:47 PM Comments (3)


First Time, Long Time said...

there's no way I see Francesa going to MSG. I mean half of their network is devoted to hockey. The other half to a basketball team that Mike dislikes more than Chris. I just can't see "Coming up the next episode of The Vault, Al Trautwig and Mike Francesa take a look the 1983 Knicks/76ers Halloween matchup.."

Jason said...

off topic, but you should add "russo can never compare lincecum to santana until lincecum beats our fifth starter" to the bucket list.

Johnny said...

Mike thinks MSG is beneath him, why would he work there? I still say NFL Network, where he will host a football show during the season, and during the offseason, he will still have Miked Up, or whatever that show is called )don't live in NYC, so I don't watch it).

Johnny said...

The best thing WFAN could do is boot Boomer and Carton, put one on from 6 to 10 and the other from 1 to 6:30.

That's not gonna happen, but it might work at for the best.

Now, back to Evan and Joe with Met Talk

lt sam weinberg said...

johnny, i agree with you. I think that Neil Best is reaching here. I can't imagine Mike doing MSG for a variety of reasons. As i wrote, i think that if they pitched to his ego and made it seem that he could be Patrick Ewing to a sleeping franchise than maybe.. maybe Mike drinks the Kool Aid, but i can't see him doing it without being able to say what he wants. I also agree with the NFL Network. There are rumors that ESPN Classic and the NFL Network are going to merge and thus bring the NFL Network into more homes which would be a huge audience for Mike. The only issue i think is whether he wants a weekly show where his voice is being heard as part of the daily discussion. He doesn't get that with the NFL Network and Mike'd Up on Sundays.

gabagool said...

Tell me it ain't so!!!!?? Please no....Mike can't be leaving FAN for MSG!!!!!!Now I have to HATE FAN AND MSG????

Anonymous said...

A few months ago Mike laid into the whole network, saying that no one (meaning him) ever watched it, it was irrelevant, the on-air personalities (except Boomer) are nobodies, their programming is mostly infomercials, etc. If this rumor is true, I hope they remember that tirade and assign him to high school ice hockey reporting.