An Ode To WFAN Staple Steve Somers

WFAN’s original overnight host is riding off into the sunset.

I always try to come up with a word other than “legend” when describing one of the greats. For Steve Somers, it is the proper term.

Although he may return for an occasional show, his run of nearly 35 years as a regular WFAN host is coming to an end. His final regular show will be tonight, with a special sendoff on Monday afternoon.

There have been wonderful tributes to Steve, from Andrew Marchand’s column to Sal Licata’s monologue this morning. Marchand made a list of Somer-isms. My favorite was included. The Kings were from Sacratomato. Not Sacramento. Sometimes they would take on the Hollywood Fakers. There was a hockey team from Long Island. They were the Ice-Landers.

Many people know how much the station means to me. It has meant a great deal over the years. I have become friends with hosts and gone to see them at appearances. We have each other’s phone numbers. I have been at Mets and Nets games with Evan.

Many people associate me with Joe Benigno, and rightfully so. Everything started with Steve. In the late 80s I would listen to him overnight. Under the covers, as he said. Steve often talks about how intimate radio is. Especially overnight. Remember, this is more than 30 years ago. No social media. Only television to offer a possible distraction, and less than 40 channels at that. Usually, I would fall asleep listening to Steve, and intently listen in the dark to him and callers for hours. 

It is hard to believe that 24 hours of sports on a radio station was not attempted until 1987, and people didn’t know if it would work. Somers was unique. He had all sorts of comedy and audio clips. When Mike Francesa complained that Joe and Evan were stealing his thing by playing John Sterling calls years ago, Steve pointed out that he was playing calls before all of them. I can remember looking forward to hearing Steve play NFL calls on a Monday morning.

There was one young broadcaster who really stood out. His Chiefs calls were passionate, and fascinated me. That man was Kevin Harlan. I remember talking to a friend in high school about how this guy was going to become the next great broadcaster.

People didn’t really know what the WFAN studios looked like. A show on CBS decided to do a feature on Steve, and it was a peak behind the curtain. Most people had never even seen a picture or video of Somers at that time. I also remember him appearing at a softball game. Just being close enough to see him and eavesdrop on Steve’s conversation provided me with a thrill. 

In 2007 I attended the WFAN 20th anniversary celebration at Umberto’s Clam House. It was great to meet WFAN personalities and callers. Somers and Benigno interviewed me. To show that I had been listening to Steve for years, I mentioned how he used to make fun of AFC teams during their Super Bowl losing streak. He said they were too small. Lilliputian, he yelled. I’m pretty sure this was the first time I’d heard that word, and I don’t think I’ve heard anybody use it since. 

Steve didn’t want any fanfare. No farewell tour. Listeners have called in with their random memories. One caller this morning talked about winning a bet with Steve. He wants his pizza. Somers explained that the pizzeria this caller wanted to order from would not deliver, and Steve would be more than happy to reimburse him if the caller went and ate there. Before that, this guy accused Steve of arguing with someone about The Dewey Decimal System in a library. It was an amazing five minutes.

The overnight was strange. Still is. That’s why we love it. You hear from all types. Guys who work late. People getting up early. Elderly, unemployed fans. Everyone is welcome. Although Joe might have perfected the overnight and put his own spin on it, Somers got the ball rolling. He started it all. You can’t have a second without the first.

WFAN’s original overnight host is riding off into the sunset. Happy retirement, Steve. Congratulations on a job well done.

Joe Benigno’s WFAN Departure Leaves Huge Void: A Tribute to One of My Radio Heroes

After 25 years on the airwaves of WFAN, Joe Benigno calls it a career on Friday with his final show.

I will never be able to properly describe the impact that Joe Benigno has had on my life, but I’ll do my best. He has been a major part of my routine for many years. Joe became the WFAN overnight host in 1995. I was an avid listener, but rarely called the station.

That changed in 1998. I started calling Monday-Friday. Most of the callers were regulars. You could name them, and even predict when they would call. We were a family. You know how that goes. Think of a holiday gathering. There are some people that occasionally get on your nerves. Perhaps you make up with them and move past disagreements. Other people annoy you to no end. It was like wrestling. One feud would eventually fizzle out, and another would develop.

I was pretty shy before becoming a regular caller. It was big for my confidence. I felt comfortable. People were often given several minutes. Especially if they could contribute something interesting. I would talk about betting. Maybe antagonize one of the callers. Joke around. Get into basketball and football or baseball. Some people would say I was their favorite caller. Others hated me. You might think getting through was easy at about 2:45 in the morning. Far from it. You could spend an hour or two trying to get through, and then wait a long time on hold. The wait was worth it.

Many people either stayed up to catch the start or woke up early for work. There were also a lot of older people who had retired and would wake up during the show. Having just left my job, I was able to stay up through the overnight and hear Joe’s entire program. He even inspired me to attend CSB (Connecticut School of Broadcasting) so I could land a job in the sports world like he did. Older folks were impressed with somebody who was decades younger than them but knew his sports.

WFAN's DraftKings pitchman Joe Benigno on fantasy football: "I want nothing  to do with it..." | Bob's Blitz

Yes, I was actually a youngster back then. Just 20 years old. I had a great memory, but could look up things on a computer as well. This wasn’t true for everybody before 2000. It also wasn’t that easy to find things back then. There were far fewer sites. Information was pretty limited compared to today, so I mostly went off my general knowledge and memories. 

Lots of people enjoy reality TV. Well, Joe’s show was reality radio. Kind of like a show where different people are crammed together in a house. Like I said, some of us went after each other. People from Canada even listen and call WFAN. Joe tried to fix me up with somebody from Nova Scotia. She talked about betting on sports. We never ended up meeting, but there were times when callers seemed more interested in discussing us than the games and teams.

Joe watched Lennox Lewis fight Mike Tyson with me at my Sportsphone job in 2002. I think my boss was jealous when I eventually told him about it. My former boss and I rarely keep in touch these days. He recently sent a text about Joe. It was the first time he sent me a text in years, with the last one also pertaining to Benigno. 

After nearly a decade of hosting overnights, Joe was promoted to middays in 2004. It hit me like a ton of bricks. Life would not be the same. He now had a partner. There were more guests. Shorter show. Additional commercials. Phone calls from callers were measured in seconds instead of minutes. Overnights were also not the same. Some hosts were better than others, but nobody was Joe. Even today you can hear fans fondly remember his overnight days. Not just the epic rants. It was a show for the callers.

Although the number of times I called Benigno had been drastically reduced, we remained close. Even before leaving overnights, Joe had started to host a Monday night football show with Tony Siragusa at Tiff’s in Pine Brook, NJ. Meeting up with him before the show gave us time to chat off the air. I ended up making it my hangout spot for the next 15 years. Joe’s last time there was probably 2005 or 2006, but his shows there had an indirect impact on me for many years to come.

His popularity continued to grow with the daytime shift, and he made numerous appearances. Some were in Yonkers, but he popped up in various locations. New Jersey. Long Island. I followed him around. A number of callers would show up, but I was his most loyal follower. John from Glen Cove was one of the callers I met. We often joined Joe at Buffalo Wild Wings or Dave and Buster’s. Again, Joe helped me without knowing it. I was getting out and enjoying myself. Meeting new people. Changing and growing as a person. 

Joe And Evan Appear On 'Good Morning Football'

There is talk that Joe might do some part-time work on WFAN in the future. One can only hope. Joe will never understand the impact he has had on people. Especially me. We will treasure whatever time remains. Oh yeah…thanks for including me in your book!

Countdown Continues Until WFAN Turns The Paige

Just one month. That is how long we have left until the Tony Paige reign of terror on WFAN wraps up. I need to continue celebrating the end of his awful radio show, and also explain how terrible his program really is to those who don’t spend their overnights listening.

For years Tony has joked about how fans are “on the ledge” when they panic about a team. He talks about how the ledge is full when things don’t go well. This is pretty much deep analysis by his standards. Tony also likes to say that he will make fans think by coming up with a topic. Usually this happens if he feels like nobody will call and there is an extra need for him to urge the hardcore overnight listening audience to participate. It reeks of desperation and incompetence.

Joe Benigno never came up with some corny topic and begged listeners to chime in on a specific survey question just because the previous evening was a slow sports night. Paige has even said that when both baseball teams win there are usually not many callers complaining, so he prefers when at least one team loses. He gets excited when neither one wins. Even though he’ll try to claim that he roots for both teams. I recall a number of times that prove otherwise. He wanted the Mets to lose ten straight after firing Willie Randolph, and didn’t want a Mets win when Vargas pitched. Sounds like one loyal fan.

Aaron Heilman left the Mets following a 3-8 season in 2008. Tony often stated that he would win 23 games in his first season with a new team. One assumes that there was some sarcasm or at least exaggeration, but Paige seemed somewhat serious. I think Tony honestly believed that Heilman would do well. There is absolutely no doubt in my mind that he would have congratulated himself and repeatedly reminded us of his prediction if it was anywhere close to happening. I remember this well because Tony constantly said it. Not just daily. Paige usually would repeat himself after about 5-10 minutes. This became a crutch for him. That’s how the show would usually go. Lots of repeating. If there occasionally were callers, they usually brought very little to the table.


I was very tempted to call and say that I was quite sure about Heilman not going on to win 23 games in 2009. I’m pretty sure that Tony would not have accepted a bet. Heilman went 4-4 in 2009. He won a total of 13 games in his three seasons after leaving the Mets. I wonder if we could have made a bet about Heilman getting 23 more victories before his career ended. Tony would have lost either way.

One great example of a regular caller to Tony is Terry from Amenia. Paige mistakenly calls him Terry from Armenia. The guy lives in New York. Dutchess County. Not Eurasia. This has gone on for many years, and really sums up the host. Nobody corrects Tony. They have had ridiculous conversations. Terry listens to baseball on the radio, and apparently other sports as well. One time Terry spoke about listening to the Patriots winning a Super Bowl with field goals in a blizzard. Tony “corrected” him by saying that it was the AFC Championship game. Also not true. I think we can all talk about fond memories of the many classic Super Bowls that were played in horrible snowstorms. Obviously I’m being facetious.

Tony and Terry have also discussed the 1985 World Series. An obvious wrong call was made. Terry, who again apparently was not watching or hasn’t seen the replay in recent years, talked about how today they would catch the mistake but back then there were not many cameras or the quality has improved. This didn’t happen when all screens were black and white with no replay. It was known within seconds that a terrible call had been made. However, plays were not reviewed or challenged back then. The umpire simply made a really bad call. Terry makes terrible calls to Tony almost every week. That’s the irony. He just doesn’t understand what happened in the World Series and NFL playoffs. Also, he doesn’t realize that his contributions are comical. Terry keeps begging Tony to stay. Maybe Terry at least knows that somebody like JJ would catch his mistakes and call him out.

Another overnight regular is Stewart from Brooklyn. He called back recently after Tony hung up on him. Stewart changed his name, but the voice is pretty recognizable. Not many people address Tony as sir, so that was another telltale. Of course he got right back in with no callers on the line. If you couldn’t figure out that Stewart was on again, he praised the caller who was just on. I don’t ever remember another caller talking about how great Stewart’s call was. It could only be Stewart.

A caller asked Tony if he was going to Fanfest last month. Paige was apparently not planning on it. Tony didn’t seem to be aware of the event, so I think it’s pretty safe to say that nobody associated with WFAN invited him. Eventually Tony decided to show up. Even if management hadn’t asked him.

Tony took score predictions before NFL games and wrote them down. I can remember my boss criticizing this. Actually, I thought it was okay. A great show would have some other highlights, but at least Tony was being fan friendly. More importantly, he documented what people predicted. Callers predict scores. This happens a lot. I remember somebody called in the afternoon and spoke about how the Stars were a good NHL team that had a chance in the postseason.

He called back after they had playoff success, but of course his call had been forgotten. Not by me. I just wasn’t hosting. So, taking predictions and then giving proper credit after the fact isn’t an awful idea in my opinion. Naturally, Tony screwed this up. He forgot his pad one day and wrote scores somewhere else. People called in the following week to brag about their predictions. Paige did not have them. In fact, Tony told callers that they had not given their picks to him. He accused at least one person of being mistaken, and said the call must have been to another host.

It reminded me of a scene from Friends. Phoebe wrote about Chandler and Monica. However, she used fake names. Phoebe wrote down their conversations. Marsha and Chester were not on the same page. She knew there would be a problem. The two thought their meeting was supposed to take place at different times. This was basically me watching Tony and callers from a distance. I saw it coming.

Going over these great moments makes me feel like Gorilla Monsoon roasting Bobby Heenan on his Prime Time Wrestling anniversary. I’ll enjoy these final weeks. You really can’t get this type of entertainment anywhere else.

Giving John Sterling His Flowers: A Tip of the Cap to a Broadcasting Legend

The first thing that blows me away when it comes to John Sterling’s incredible career is his remarkable streak of calling every Yankees game for over 30 years. The man called 5,060 straight games. Every single inning. He likes to add that part. Regardless of what you think about his style or performance, that is a phenomenal accomplishment. It might never be duplicated. John has also mentioned that he called Braves and Hawks games for years in Atlanta. More than 200 combined each year, although he could not announce every single game for both with overlapping seasons. Since Suzyn Waldman became his partner in 2005, John has handled the play-by-play for every inning he was there.

Sterling has called the action in numerous sports for various teams. He has announced Nets games (including one last year), and even called hockey 40 years ago. John turned 81 this month. He was born on July 4, 1938. Same birthday as George Steinbrenner. John was born 8 years after George. Perhaps that’s one of the reasons they got along so well. Imagine spending your 60s and 70s doing all that travel for work. Sterling has been so durable and reliable. John said that people told him he needed to take days off. Otherwise, his streak would probably still be growing.

Many people are familiar with his calls in recent years. I’m one of the people who has complained that he does not accurately describe the action when I’m driving or home listening to the radio. However, I remember how much his calls were anticipated when I was a teenager. Some of you probably don’t know what a transistor radio is. Perhaps you have heard of a stereo or Walkman. Anyway, I would often turn on Sterling and listen to his calls. They were usually much more exciting than the local or national television call.

Chris Carrino and Ryan Ruocco were solid on WFAN filling in for Sterling. I don’t know if either will replace him permanently when the time comes, and I’m not sure if Sterling will step away anytime soon. My guess is that John will not if he has anything to say about it. Carrino is from Yonkers. I met him about 20 years ago in New Jersey when I interviewed for a Nets internship. Chris would probably be my early choice. I think the time off has worked. John sounds stronger. That was the idea.

Meanwhile, let’s give credit to Suzyn as well. She has been nominated for the Radio Hall of Fame. John might also have some special recognition in his future. They have been quite a pair. Although I find the impressions of Sour Shoes entertaining (plus Craig Carton over the years), both John and Suzyn have done terrific work for decades. Not just as voices calling Yankees baseball. I’m sure people will say nice things about them when they stop working. Here is a tip of the cap while they are still going strong.


The Overnight Nightmare of WFAN’s Tony Paige is Finally Coming to an End

Tony Paige has been putting overnight listeners to sleep for many years. Actually, one person once wrote (it honestly was not me but I agreed) that he was left awake and angry at the stupidity from his show. Tony will be retiring in September. Some people like Tony’s show because they get a lot of time to speak. One reason is that there are usually plenty of open phone lines. Paige often babbles redundantly until someone finally calls in. If you could not tell that nobody was waiting on the phone lines, his foolish caller will often give it away by talking about how surprised he is to get on so quickly and not have to wait on hold. He’ll thank Tony for taking him right away. Paige is just waiting for anyone to check in so he can immediately take the call.

Over the years I have given dozens of examples about how bad the show is. I’ll narrow it down for this article, but I had a blog for years. The majority of it was spent ripping Tony. Paige has not hosted a Monday or Friday morning program in more than 14 years. This figures to be because he is not capable of hosting a thorough and specific football preview or recap show. I will give an example of each. That’s how incompetent he is. Tony was on in January of 2005 after the Jets lost in week 17 but fortunately backed into a playoff spot when Pittsburgh beat Buffalo. Paige could have done a real time review of what happened in one game while somebody was threatening in another. You would think this is a difficult monologue to screw up.

Well, he did it. Instead of talking about how Buffalo’s loss bailed out the Jets, Tony decided to begin his program by uncomfortably reading the week 17 scoreboard. Of course the update minutes earlier had just given all of the previous day’s big football scores. His monologue should have been filled with passion and game details. Overnights have been divided since 2005. Even though Paige works 5 shifts, he gets a double on Saturday. Morning overnight followed by an evening shift later on. Several hosts were given a show two or three overnights per week since 2005. Evan Roberts. Marc Malusis. John Jastremski. They all worked Monday and Friday. Plus, those guys received opportunities to work daytime hours when other hosts took vacations or a promotion was available. At least WFAN management knew that there was no way Tony’s shows should see the light of day.

Some things are just a matter of taste. We can have different opinions. However, Paige has made epic mistakes. One football error proved why he should not be hosting any major NFL show. It was another disastrous monologue. Perhaps his worst ever. Tony came on one Saturday morning in early 2009. Paige previewed what figured to be an exciting playoff matchup between the Eagles and Falcons. Veteran Donovan McNabb opposing the youngster Matt Ryan. Tony said that this was the pairing he really wanted to see. There was one problem. They were not playing against each other. Atlanta was scheduled to play in Arizona less than 24 hours later in a Saturday playoff game. Philadelphia had a Sunday afternoon meeting with Minnesota. This is an unforgivable mistake for someone hosting on WFAN. An embarrassed Tony had to explain that he was wrong about the schedule following his opening, and it was awkward when a couple callers later brought up his blunder.

There are so many more examples of Tony just not caring about football. He would bring his son to the library on Sundays. Guys would die for an excuse to watch football. Tony had it. Tell your wife or another relative to bring him. You have a job to do. Or, go on Saturday. Paige hates college sports. It’s not like he would be checking out SEC games on CBS or ESPN. Denver had a shocking comeback against Chicago when Tim Tebow rallied the Broncos. People were going nuts about it. Tebowmania took off. It was televised locally in New York. Paige is able to get more games than many people. He lives in New Jersey but gets channels from both Philadelphia and the New York area. Callers wanted to talk about the thrilling contest when Tony was on again. Paige didn’t see it. He went out to dinner. The guy just doesn’t care about sports. Kind of important when you host shows on WFAN.

Paige claims to be a Bucs fan, but would not spring for the NFL package. I remember him complaining when there was talk about NFL Network possibly costing less than two bucks per month. Tony wanted no part of it. One time Tony hosted on a Tuesday morning about two hours after the 4-0 Giants lost a Monday night game against Cleveland. Paige began the show talking about his young son playing sports. Tony liked to speak as if Jalen had some amazing future in soccer and baseball. However, Jalen decided to stop playing sports before becoming famous. Anyway, another monologue was ruined. One of many.

Paige also struggles with baseball. Numerous times he spoke about the 1995 Yankees. Any big baseball fan knows that the team lost their first round playoff series against Seattle. It is well known for many reasons. Tony kept saying that they played against Baltimore. Anybody over 35 who claims to be a big sports fan should know that. Especially if you are in New York, or at least work there hosting on the country’s top sports station.

Although searching for clips on YouTube or other sites probably will not give you a great idea of how awful Tony is, some comments might. I came across an interesting thread from years ago. Sometimes frustrated fans vent about how he knows nothing when it comes to sports.

The holiday weekend is over. We have suffered through Tony’s final July 4th show on WFAN. That was actually my inspiration for this article. Tony opened the show talking about how there are no more doubleheaders on the holiday. Yes, there were doubleheaders in 1969. Not really a timely topic. That was 50 years ago. There were seven. However, in 1970 just one doubleheader took place on July 4. World Series games used to be played during the day. Things change. For example, people got cable. Fans don’t want to spend 7 hours at the stadium these days. Seeing a doubleheader today is almost like a punishment. Especially for Mets fans. Tickets do not cost $1.30 anymore. Hardly any fans would stay for an entire day. If you did, food and drinks would be pretty expensive. The 5:00 reset featured his ridiculous thoughts on the matter for anybody who just woke up and happened to miss this foolishness hours earlier. When there is a single-admission doubleheader these days, Paige goes into a whole big thing about how people will leave the ballpark without knowing how it works. Previously I’ve heard him wonder on the air when they last had one of these doubleheaders that only requires one ticket. It’s frustrating to know that there were several single-admission doubleheaders in New York since two summers ago. Paige doesn’t remember that. He just knows about 1969. I also heard him talk about how one time there was a doubleheader on Friday and then another one two days later. Five games in three days. Tony knows it happened when he was a kid, but acts like that hasn’t happened since then. The Yankees had this exact scenario in 1990 against Cleveland. Big deal. I remembered, and looked it up.

I’m not gonna kill him for not remembering. His lack of knowledge when it comes to current sports is much more troubling. However, it seems like Tony stopped caring about sports and paying attention decades ago. Just over two more months remaining. My long, overnight nightmare will finally be over. 


My Thoughts On The Craig Carton Verdict And His Fall From Grace

Ny Post – A Manhattan federal jury has convicted sports radio personality Craig Carton of fraud — setting the fallen “Boomer and Carton” co-host up for some hard prison time when he is sentenced next year.

After less than a day of deliberations, a jury of three men and nine women found Carton guilty on all three counts against him, including securities fraud, wire fraud and conspiracy to commit fraud.

Carton looked straight ahead as the guilty verdicts were read while his wife, who was sitting in the courtroom with other supporters, held back tears.

“I need to let it sink in now,” he told reporters outside the courthouse. “I’m going to go home and hug my kids and let my lawyers deal with the rest of it.”

His lawyer, Robert Gottlieb, said he will appeal the verdict.

Carton, 49, was released on bail but ordered to return for sentencing on Feb. 27. He faces as much as 45 years in prison based on the sentencing guidelines but will likely get far less.

The Westchester native was one of the biggest names in sports radio when he was arrested last year and charged with defrauding investors of a bulk ticket business he had been running with Michael Wright, who has pleaded guilty.

Crazy news in the New York sports media. Craig Carton was found guilty on all three counts of fraud today and faces a maximum of 45 years in prison. I don’t think he’ll receive the max, but there’s no way he doesn’t go to prison for some time. I still can’t believe this is happening. In a way, Craig Carton’s fall from grace has felt like an understatement in the New York sports media. I’m shocked at how little press there has been for this saga. Carton was still doing a show on Fantasy Sports Network up until a few weeks ago despite having this looming black cloud over his head. If you’re not from the tristate area, it’s hard to comprehend just how much WFAN means to sports fans including myself. Boomer and Carton, Joe and Evan, and Mike Francesa were staples on The Fan for the past decade. These are voices you wake up to and listen to throughout the day for opinions on New York sports.

I still cannot get over some of these details. Between taking loans from strip club owners to funding expensive casino trips, it has all the makings of a movie script. It reminds me of the modern day Catch Me If You Can.

NY Post – At trial, the feds called a hedge fund executive who said his firm gave Carton more than $5 million at various points in 2016 to invest in tickets to Metallica and Barbara Streisand concerts.

In order to win the money, Carton fabricated contracts and emails, including one email presented at trial that was doctored by Carton to look like it had come from Fred Mangione, chief of staff of Brooklyn Sports & Entertainment, which owns the Barclays Center and the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, the evidence showed.

At the time of the fraud, Carton was spending big bucks at casinos — even borrowing money from loan sharks to fund his casino trips, according to witness testimony.

One of the loan sharks, Desmond Finger, a general manager of Upper East Side strip club Sapphire 39, told the jury he gave Carton several high-interest loans of as much as $500,000 a pop to finance his casino trips in 2016 and 2017.

500K? My god. I can’t even spend $100 at a bar without hating myself the next day.

It’s so weird to me how this all played out. For almost a year, Carton was claiming innocence. Carton said that he was “unequivocally not guilty” of what he was being charged with. Then, the evidence was presented at the case and Carton went silent. I’m not an expert, but it looked like an open and shut case to the average person. His lawyer’s remarks in the closing argument stunned me.

NY Daily News – “Craig was wrong ever to lie. He was wrong ever to misrepresent. He should be ashamed,” Gottlieb said.

After all of the innocent talk, Carton’s lawyer flat out said Carton lied. No way around it. It’s one of those situations where one lie turns into another lie which turns into a web of lies and before you can get out, it’s too late.

Should you feel bad for Carton? Can you feel bad for Carton? I’ll say this. I feel awful for his wife and family. This decision sets his family back for years to come and that’s gut-wrenching. I also feel a little bad for Carton for the fact that he couldn’t beat his addiction. Nothing worse than wasted talent. Carton was such a unique sports media personality and although I wasn’t the biggest fan, I could respect what he was trying to do in terms of being the Howard Stern of NY sports media. That all went away with this court case.

That being said, Carton is a liar and a fraud who committed a federal crime. That’s not my words. The courts said those two phrases. Carton stole money from investors and never paid it back. That’s a crime and to those investors, justice was served. I can’t feel bad for someone who stole money and committed fraud for their own personal benefit.

Wishing the best for his wife and family.

Another Interesting Week Ahead at WFAN

If I told you 12 months ago that August of 2018 would begin with Mike Francesa at WFAN but no Craig Carton or Joe Benigno, you probably would have thought I was nuts. Benigno is still out after sexual harassment allegations. Evan Roberts has continued to work solo. Thursday morning it will be Evan and Jerry Recco filling in for Boomer and Gio. On Friday, Evan will be paired with Chris Moore.


Mike Francesa is off this week. CMB continues to fill in Thursday and Friday. Mike is also off next week. The guy can’t even be there for Yankees-Red Sox. Speaking of pairings, John Jastremski and Jody Mac team up Thursday morning at 10. Jody works by himself Friday, and the usual overnight shift for JJ on Friday morning goes to Zach Gelb. McDonald also fills in for Evan on Saturday.

The man known as JR gets another gig. Wednesday night becomes Thursday with JR hosting until 2 in the morning. Chris McMonigle hosted Monday night. He will also be on early Saturday morning for Tony Paige.

Saturday is full of surprises. None bigger than Chris Moore working 6-10 for Richard Neer. As I mentioned, Jody is working for Evan. Robin Lundberg makes an appearance after that. Joe Giglio closes out the night.

On Sunday, McMonigle again gets an overnight shift. There will be an afternoon shift for Giglio after Moore once again fills in for Neer. Got all that? Keep it here for more WFAN thoughts next week.

My Latest Victim: Chris Lopresti Shows Alarming Lack of Basketball Knowledge on WFAN

Monday morning marked the return of Jerry Recco to WFAN’s Boomer and Gio program. Gregg said it was good to have him back. It certainly was. Chris Lopresti had been filling in for Recco. This included taking his place on the brief show that comes on for about 15 minutes at approximately 5:45 with Al Dukes. I have often felt that there was a certain dislike or even hatred of basketball when Lopresti worked. He seemed to be dialed in when talking about hockey. Sometimes people who like the NHL are not NBA fans.

Last year, when there were two days off after Golden State and Cleveland played their series opener, Lopresti seemed angry or disgusted when talking about the series schedule. It is a television thing. Saturday is an awful night for ratings. I have looked back at NBA Finals dates for the last 30 years. There was not even one game on a Saturday. For years NBC went with a Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday schedule.

ABC then took over. They went Tuesday, Thursday, and Sunday for years after that. Both Cleveland and Golden State were coming off quick victories in the previous round. Wondering why two off days were scheduled without travel was not crazy. I guess it was mostly his history of discussing basketball that made me notice and remember this.

Finally, my proof and validation came last week. The game that was taken off for O.J. and the chase came up. Lopresti was not sure if it happened during the NBA Finals. This was June 17, 1994. ESPN aired a special about this day and how various events were taking place. For years people have discussed what happened. Lopresti didn’t know if it took place during the Conference Finals. Why would they only be in round three during the second half of June?

In fact, he mentioned the Western Conference Finals. I’m pretty sure New York is not located in the western part of our country. Yes, it was Rockets-Knicks. New Yorkers who are not even Knicks fans should have some basic knowledge of this. Especially if you are working at WFAN.

This is one of the most shocking and disappointing things I have ever heard on the radio. More importantly, I have been vindicated!