Fixing WEEI

HomeBrew1901

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Marbleheader said:
I don't think reshuffling is the answer. They need to bring in some talent and get rid of Wolfe.
The problem is who?  I am of the belief that Boston listeners still want locals and from what I have seen on the sports channels all the locals are pretty much the same boring personalities that we are talking about.  I like Bertrand, Flynn and Gasper but in smaller doses and I'm not sure how they would do full time but it's better than what is at the table currently.
 
I doubt McAdams wants the gig full time, Tom E Curran might be worth it he will certainly be better than Mazz, but who else is really out there that doesn't already have a cushy gig with ESPN Radio?
 

NortheasternPJ

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I posted that a few months ago and i still agree. They were great when they were on together. Someone mentioned that he has aspirations to become and NFL GM and wants the national exposure. Not sure how true that is though.
 

BellhornsBiatch

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Mornings - Michael Smith & Michael Holley, Mutt as 3rd voice/flash.
 
10-2 - Minihane/Jess Moran - I know there's been whispers about getting a female voice in there in the weekday programming, and she knows her baseball at the very least. She's done enough at CSNNE to make me think she can handle the other three sports and would be undoubtedly more positive than Kirk. Probably can acheive a nice balance and some good debate.
 
2-6 - Merloni. Salk's not that bad, but he's definitely not awesome yet either. This would probably be his last shot at afternoon drive, regardless of what's in his contract.
 
6 - Villani has impressed me, especially last week when the Boston sports world was melting down over the 4th of July. This kid knew his stuff across all sports pretty solid, and has a certain kind of DA quality. Ryder is Ryder, and I think he's awesome. Pre and post for him, with him sometimes jumping in with Villani. I like his energy.
 
Anyone else think the Celtics Summer Cooler has a sweet ring to it? I like the idea, maybe adding some more off-season "special" type shows with limited runs might be neat to try. To rival 98.5's B's coverage, maybe something where they have Jack and Dale host something similar that only airs for a limited time too.
 
Another thing that I think we're seeing develop a little bit with the Minihanes and Adam Kauffmans of the world are the dual threat radio voice who actually can command the english language on a page. To that end, I'd like to hear Chad Finn on radio on occasion with Bob Ryan, like they do the videos on Boston.com. I think the medium is changing, but it doesn't just have to be young guys turning clicks into radio demos. Finn and Ryan, I'd listen to them talk about pretty much anything for a couple hours on a Saturday, even if it's just a special edition show.
 

timlinin8th

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Marbleheader said:
Where did Beetle come from? Guys are out there, they just have to find them.
While this is true, TSH has had the luxury of slowly developing Beetle from a flash guy and slowly integrating him more and more into F&M and then his weekend show. WEEI is looking for impact players now to turn their rankings around but don't have any good prospects on the verge, or even in the pipeline, so are going to have to wade into the free agent waters to build themselves up (to steal a sports analogy)
 

HomeBrew1901

Has Season 1 of "Manimal" on Blu Ray
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Sure but you can't just try and find the next Beetle and give him a prime time drive slot.  I'm sure there are some folks in NH, ME, RI, etc... but I would think if they were ready for a big market like Boston they would be here already.  I don't think you can take a show like Christian and the King from ESPN NH and just transplant it to Boston but honestly I haven't listened to them enough to make that judgement.
 

Smiling Joe Hesketh

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Just let WEEI die and start over. Wolfe has been hoist by his own petard (his stunning arrogance in a piece that ran a few years ago on Ordway had to be seen to be believed) and should not work in the industry again. The "talent" is abysmal. When you're getting crushed by the blow-dried likes of Felger and Mazz it's time to give up and sell timeshares or something.
 

Harry Hooper

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As a listener, I don't want to hear about Salk's domestic foibles (living with parents temporarily, relocating wife, dog issues, etc.), but they keep spending major time on them. Holley seems to really enjoy those segments.
 
If you're a sports fan, you want both stations providing decent options, but at the rate this is going WEEI will abandon the format.
 

John Marzano Olympic Hero

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As a listener, I don't want to hear about Salk's domestic foibles (living with parents temporarily, relocating wife, dog issues, etc.), but they keep spending major time on them. Holley seems to really enjoy those segments.
 
People think that this is a way to connect the announcer to their audience. Howard Stern did (does he? I don't listen anymore) this to a large extent which is what got him so popular, people saw themselves in Howard. The big, huge caveat is that Howard made his life very interesting. I mean, for most of the mid-90s everyt day he'd talk about how the previous night he locked himself in his basement and masturbated until he dragged his ass upstairs, ate a piece of grilled chicken and then went to bed. But Stern made that sound funny and kind of cool.
 
Salk is obviously no Stern (which is fine, no one is) but his annecdotes don't resonate because they're hacky and safe. Yeah it sucks that you have to live with your folks but where's the drama? Did they catch you and your wife having sex? Are they dicks about you drinking? People want to hear the intimate, relatable details not "Awww man, my mom made us meatloaf again. What's the deal with meatloaf anyway? Who eats this stuff?" It's the forced jocularity of a graduate of Bristol U -- you could picture ESPN's Mike and Mike having the same discussion 12 hours earlier and that show makes me want to blow my brains out.
 
I think that Salk (and Minnihan and Mut) need to bring something else to the table that will make them interesting. I don't know what? I mean everyone who is popular on Boston radio (past and present) has something other than sports knowledge. These three guys need that secret sauce.
 

JimBoSox9

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I continue to be mildly surprised at the breadth and depth of the Salk dislike, with the caveat that I only listen to about 2 hours a week of the show.  Until he decided to drive the OMG PATRIOT WAY BYE bus, at least.  Until then I had appreciated his lack of catering to the bottom 25% of his callers.  I think maybe he's strong on baseball (possibly hockey) and that's it.
 

NortheasternPJ

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They should start with clearing out the weekends of dead weight and using it to actually groom some talent.
 

Harry Hooper

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NortheasternPJ said:
They should start with clearing out the weekends of dead weight and using it to actually groom some talent.
 
Yes, and picking names out of a hat would be a more successful approach than whatever "nose for talent" approach they've been using.
 

Doctuh

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drtooth said:
How Jason Wolfe still has a job is baffling.  There is where I would start.  A fresher set of eyes to oversee the operation is long overdue.
 
He is a completely inept radio executive. They should keep a little of the on-air talent, the technical staff and fire the executive chain almost to the top.
 

ForKeeps

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Bunt4aTriple said:
Am I the only one who can't stand Merloni?  I'm not sure what it is about him, but I feel as though he spends the morning staring into a mirror, holding his hairbrush as a microphone, asking himself, "What's my hot take for the day?"  I just don't believe that feels as strongly on any topic as he purports.
 
He is the only one I can listen to talk about baseball and not want to put a gun in my mouth.
 

54thMA

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Why are they even paying Mustard and Johnson at this point?
So they can give Mike from Canton, Steve from Waltham, Joey from the North End and the rest of the Yankee fan callers a time and a place to babble.

I took several members advice here and stopped listening to sports talk radio months ago and I'm eternally grateful for it.
 

HomeBrew1901

Has Season 1 of "Manimal" on Blu Ray
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I may start a new thread on this but what are some good "new" voices that we should be listening for? Especially outside the Boston market and neighboring states like ME, NH and RI.

I've never heard of Vellani but he's been mentioned twice in this thread as having potential and so has Chris Arcand from
Christian and King and some EEI flashes.

Who else should we be listening to that has potential that EEI should be giving a weekend slot to to cut their teeth?
 

NortheasternPJ

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54thMA said:
So they can give Mike from Canton, Steve from Waltham, Joey from the North End and the rest of the Yankee fan callers a time and a place to babble.I took several members advice here and stopped listening to sports talk radio months ago and I'm eternally grateful for it.

I liked when Gresh was going to give Joey from the north end a free book and Joey refused because he was probably really herb from Weston and wouldn't give them his address . Even gresh and so called him a fraud. I don't think he ever called back
 

NortheasternPJ

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Andy Merchant said:
Maybe he just didn't want Gresh's crappy book.
 
 
He actually demanded to get it in person. So its odd he wanted the awful book of Sports Lists and to meet GRESH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
 

SauceJack

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BellhornsBiatch said:
Mornings - Michael Smith & Michael Holley, Mutt as 3rd voice/flash.
 
10-2 - Minihane/Jess Moran - I know there's been whispers about getting a female voice in there in the weekday programming, and she knows her baseball at the very least. She's done enough at CSNNE to make me think she can handle the other three sports and would be undoubtedly more positive than Kirk. Probably can acheive a nice balance and some good debate.
 
2-6 - Merloni. Salk's not that bad, but he's definitely not awesome yet either. This would probably be his last shot at afternoon drive, regardless of what's in his contract.
 
6 - Villani has impressed me, especially last week when the Boston sports world was melting down over the 4th of July. This kid knew his stuff across all sports pretty solid, and has a certain kind of DA quality. Ryder is Ryder, and I think he's awesome. Pre and post for him, with him sometimes jumping in with Villani. I like his energy.
 
Anyone else think the Celtics Summer Cooler has a sweet ring to it? I like the idea, maybe adding some more off-season "special" type shows with limited runs might be neat to try. To rival 98.5's B's coverage, maybe something where they have Jack and Dale host something similar that only airs for a limited time too.
 
Another thing that I think we're seeing develop a little bit with the Minihanes and Adam Kauffmans of the world are the dual threat radio voice who actually can command the english language on a page. To that end, I'd like to hear Chad Finn on radio on occasion with Bob Ryan, like they do the videos on Boston.com. I think the medium is changing, but it doesn't just have to be young guys turning clicks into radio demos. Finn and Ryan, I'd listen to them talk about pretty much anything for a couple hours on a Saturday, even if it's just a special edition show.
Nice BellhornsBiatch  - I thought/think you are mostly right the F on, man. 
 
My opinion of the EEI topic, but separate from this - if that makes any sense - is the complete burnout factor from scores of years of listening to talk radio.  Sometimes it is just noise at this point, no matter the station.
 
I guess what I am saying, is that EEI is meat on the grill cooked far too long.
 

Phenom

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In terms of developing new voices, WEEI really screwed themselves when they started to outsource their sports flashes.  (If I remember correctly, Entercom initiated it as a cost cutting measure.)
 
The easiest way to develop new on-air talent is to bring guys in to read updates every 20 minutes AND engage with the weekday hosts.  The growth of Beetle as an on-air personality is a perfect example of this.  He started off with Felger and Mazz when they first launched, and every year he's become a bigger part of the show.  He acquired a weekend show along the way, and he's built up his own persona.  
 
It was mentioned earlier in the thread, but every host on "The Sports Hub" has his own voice.  Even the fill-in update guys do.  Kaufman, for example, is familiar to the listeners because of how often he fills in for Bertrand on Felger and Mazz.  They've given him his own character, and now he's a distinct voice on the station even though he's not a regular host.
 
"The Sports Hub" wisely uses its weekend schedule to continue to bring along new voices.  They give Saturday mornings to Johnston and Flynn instead of Mustard and Johnson.  If there's an opening on Saturday afternoon, they'll have Rich Keefe host instead of Butch Stearns.  
 
When the regular hosts are on vacation, "The Sports Hub" brings in the same younger hosts to fill-in instead of contracting Dale Arnold.  Johnston and Flynn sub for Toucher and Rich, for example.  This gives the part-timers more experience, and also allows more listeners to become familiar with them.  
 
No young host gets any exposure on WEEI.  I'm sure guys like Chris Villani do sports flashes, but because they're not in-studio with the regular hosts, they aren't engaged in the show.  WEEI needs to bring back the in-studio update guys, and wipe the weekend schedule clean.  It's not an easy fix, but it's the first step to take if they want to bring in fresh voices.
 

Rocco Graziosa

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Phenom said:
In terms of developing new voices, WEEI really screwed themselves when they started to outsource their sports flashes.  (If I remember correctly, Entercom initiated it as a cost cutting measure.)
 
The easiest way to develop new on-air talent is to bring guys in to read updates every 20 minutes AND engage with the weekday hosts.  The growth of Beetle as an on-air personality is a perfect example of this.  He started off with Felger and Mazz when they first launched, and every year he's become a bigger part of the show.  He acquired a weekend show along the way, and he's built up his own persona.  
 
It was mentioned earlier in the thread, but every host on "The Sports Hub" has his own voice.  Even the fill-in update guys do.  Kaufman, for example, is familiar to the listeners because of how often he fills in for Bertrand on Felger and Mazz.  They've given him his own character, and now he's a distinct voice on the station even though he's not a regular host.
 
"The Sports Hub" wisely uses its weekend schedule to continue to bring along new voices.  They give Saturday mornings to Johnston and Flynn instead of Mustard and Johnson.  If there's an opening on Saturday afternoon, they'll have Rich Keefe host instead of Butch Stearns.  
 
When the regular hosts are on vacation, "The Sports Hub" brings in the same younger hosts to fill-in instead of contracting Dale Arnold.  Johnston and Flynn sub for Toucher and Rich, for example.  This gives the part-timers more experience, and also allows more listeners to become familiar with them.  
 
No young host gets any exposure on WEEI.  I'm sure guys like Chris Villani do sports flashes, but because they're not in-studio with the regular hosts, they aren't engaged in the show.  WEEI needs to bring back the in-studio update guys, and wipe the weekend schedule clean.  It's not an easy fix, but it's the first step to take if they want to bring in fresh voices.
 
 
Fresh voices?  Other than Dennis and Callahan they've basically turned the entire on air staff over in the last 24 months.  I don't doubt that a few fresh voices in the flash would be helpful, but to actually get new voices on air they would basically have to nuke the station.  Get rid of everyone and start over.
 
It would be five years before you would even be competitive again. 
 

NortheasternPJ

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Rocco Graziosa said:
Fresh voices?  Other than Dennis and Callahan they've basically turned the entire on air staff over in the last 24 months.  I don't doubt that a few fresh voices in the flash would be helpful, but to actually get new voices on air they would basically have to nuke the station.  Get rid of everyone and start over.
 
It would be five years before you would even be competitive again. 
 
Danny Ainge loves this post. 
 
how have they really turned it over? Moved Holley, moved Merloni, added Salk and Mutt? Planet Mikey is still a staple. TSH used this slot to bring up DA who's now national (despite his childish callers, Mario Coins and a 2am shift) and brought back Adam Jones after he left. Adam Jones isn't my favorite but he's probably better than anyone WEEI has on the air. Yet he had to leave the market, go to ESPN Online Radio then come back to the TSH. Yet, WEEI is going on with year 437 of Planet Mikey.
 
This weekend features the following:
 
Mustard & Johnson
Celtics Summer Cooler with Cedric Maxwell. - Nothing says promise like weekend NBA talk shows in the offseason with a rebuilding team and with Maxwell. (See: TSH not running the hockey show all summer, although a much more successful team in town)
Jen Royle
Chris Villiani
 
then tomorrow we have:
Mustard & Johnson
Dale Arnold & Rob Bradford (I do like Bradford)
Down on the farm with Alex Speier (SoSH farm system radio? granted i'd probably like this but it does not appeal to 99% of listeners)
 
I have no idea who Chris Villiani and Alex Speier are so if they're great then that's my mistake.
 
There is zero talent in that whole group who can host their own show (outside of Villiani and Speier who I've never heard and they could be great or could be god awful).
 
Someone mentioned earlier they all sound the same. TSH was ripping on Bert Breer and a few others from Syracuse all week about "Do they train all you Syracuse guys to sound the same?" They have a valid point. 
 

Corsi

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54thMA said:
So they can give Mike from Canton, Steve from Waltham, Joey from the North End and the rest of the Yankee fan callers a time and a place to babble.

I took several members advice here and stopped listening to sports talk radio months ago and I'm eternally grateful for it.
 
I used to wait on Mike from Canton when I worked at a dry cleaner in Canton center back in high school.  Guy was a dick.
 

Phenom

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Rocco Graziosa said:
Fresh voices?  Other than Dennis and Callahan they've basically turned the entire on air staff over in the last 24 months.  I don't doubt that a few fresh voices in the flash would be helpful, but to actually get new voices on air they would basically have to nuke the station.  Get rid of everyone and start over.
 
It would be five years before you would even be competitive again. 
 
It's going to be a slow build for WEEI.  It takes a while to build distinguished voices and chemistry.  The only show with both of those things is Dennis and Callahan, and they've alienated too many Boston sports fans to ever be competitive with Toucher and Rich.  
 
Every show on "The Sports Hub" features hosts who seem to enjoy working together, and have great chemistry:
Toucher and Rich: Hosted in Atlanta and on WBCN for years before moving to 98.5.  Have excellent chemistry, and are real life friends.
Gresh and Zo: Worked together for many years in Providence and on Patriots broadcasts.  It's clear they're good friends off the air.  
Felger and Mazz: Worked with each other at the Herald for over a decade, and spent countless hours on TV/radio together.  They were very familiar with each other before the show started.  
 
I don't see a quick fix for EEI.  The best thing they can do is blow out the old voices and turn the station completely over.  Enough of Dennis and Callahan, Michael Holley, Mustard and Johnson, Dale, Butch Stearns, etc.  Send Salk, Minihane, Merloni and Mutnansky on vacation together for two weeks.  Force those four to develop chemistry between them.  Whether we like it or not, they are the building blocks going forward.  (Or substitute Mutnansky for Jess Moran, which has been rumored.  Whatever.)  Then mix in your Chris Villani's of the world into various shows.  
 
To paraphrase Rick Pitino, Ryen Russillo isn't walking through that door.  Michael Smith isn't walking through that door.  There isn't much out there.  WEEI has to start from the ground up.  
 
The ratings may decline a little further during this transitional phase, but there are enough sports fans in Boston to keep them afloat.  In fact, because everyone would work relatively cheaply, the station would still be profitable.    
 

Byrdbrain

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NortheasternPJ said:
I have no idea who Chris Villiani and Alex Speier are so if they're great then that's my mistake.
I don't know Viliani either but Speier is probably the best RedSox beat guy right now. He is a Harvard guy(so a smidge brighter than Cafardo) embraces advanced metrics and is very knowledgeable about the sox farm system.
He isn't the most exciting voice on the radio but if you want info about the sox I find him the best resource.
He is a writer who comes on the radio on occasion though(like Bradford) so he will have very little input towards "fixing WEEI".
 

54thMA

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Corsi said:
I used to wait on Mike from Canton when I worked at a dry cleaner in Canton center back in high school.  Guy was a dick.
You have my sympathies.  I'm sure he's a bigger dickhead in person that he is on the radio, which really is saying something.
 

berniecarbo1

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I have said this many times....can this market really handle 2 top 5 market share all sports stations? I think that maybe it can't. Actually there are 4 all sports staions in Boston (EEI, TSH, ESPN Radio 850 AM and NBC Sports 1510 AM). To me, that is oversaturation. I can see one local themed sports station and a national station (maybe TSH and ESPN Radio or NBC Sports Radio) being competitive and drawing decent ratings but how many all  sports stations does one city really need? I think what you see when you get too much of anything is exactly what is playing out in Boston radio now, one dominant station and a bunch of smaller, less effective stations milling around for the crumbs. You can only listen to so many shows at any one time and there is a limited number of listeners out there who follow sports. Even folks on these threads (and I would say most of us are pretty avid sports fans) don't listen to sports radio 24/7. We tune in for a while and do other things. But when we do we usually go to a particular show or shows.
 
EEI had the world of sports radio in Boston by the short hairs for many, many years. They got arrogant and pandered to celebrity callers. I have said it before....when they made fun of hockey and equated it with WWE for all those years and the Bruins finally got their act together in the last 3-4 years and became relevant, EEI could not get the hockey fanbase back and that group turned to TSH. Word spread about TSH and before you knew it, TSH was in the big leagues. EEI didn;t know what the hell happened until it was too late. Did TSH luck out a bit by getting the Bruins broadcast at just the  right time? Sure they did and the fact that they also had the Pats was a big boost. But they took that lucky break and ran with it. EEI couldn't respond and were left with a tired format. Will they recover? Perhaps but they need fresh new voices and a different business plan. Until they get new management with a new approach to sport radio, they will be a distant second for the long haul.
 

LoneWarrior1

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Phenom said:
In terms of developing new voices, WEEI really screwed themselves when they started to outsource their sports flashes.  (If I remember correctly, Entercom initiated it as a cost cutting measure.)
 
The easiest way to develop new on-air talent is to bring guys in to read updates every 20 minutes AND engage with the weekday hosts.  The growth of Beetle as an on-air personality is a perfect example of this.  He started off with Felger and Mazz when they first launched, and every year he's become a bigger part of the show.  He acquired a weekend show along the way, and he's built up his own persona.  
 
Phenom is 100% right, but Bertrand was one of those who got outsourced along with Wallach. Beetle was there for over a year doing weekends and fill-ins for Shepard for the Big Show. When the Sports Hub launched, they plucked the two of them up and now the two of them are major players in the two biggest shows on the radio. Oops. It's not that 'EEI can't get talent, they just don't know how develop it. 
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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LoneWarrior1 said:
Phenom is 100% right, but Bertrand was one of those who got outsourced along with Wallach. Beetle was there for over a year doing weekends and fill-ins for Shepard for the Big Show. When the Sports Hub launched, they plucked the two of them up and now the two of them are major players in the two biggest shows on the radio. Oops. It's not that 'EEI can't get talent, they just don't know how develop it.
 
The implication of Jon Wallach being an example of "EEI can get talent but not develop it" hurts your argument, I think.  He was doing flashes/fill-ins for the mid-day show as well as weekends at EEI for years before TSH "plucked" him away.  He could not crack their lineup which is why he went to Sports Hub.
 
Bertrand might be a diamond in the rough that EEI missed on, but Wallach most certainly is not.
 

Sampo Gida

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Bunt4aTriple said:
Am I the only one who can't stand Merloni?  I'm not sure what it is about him, but I feel as though he spends the morning staring into a mirror, holding his hairbrush as a microphone, asking himself, "What's my hot take for the day?"  I just don't believe that feels as strongly on any topic as he purports.
 
He is actually the only one on WEEI that I like to listen to, especially about baseball.
 
They should clean house with everyone else, start with Dennis and Callahan and finish with Planet Mikey.  Felger and Mazz must be loving the post Ordway era as listeners rushed to the exits looking for alternatives.
 

LoneWarrior1

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Red(s)HawksFan said:
The implication of Jon Wallach being an example of "EEI can get talent but not develop it" hurts your argument, I think.  He was doing flashes/fill-ins for the mid-day show as well as weekends at EEI for years before TSH "plucked" him away.  He could not crack their lineup which is why he went to Sports Hub.
 
Bertrand might be a diamond in the rough that EEI missed on, but Wallach most certainly is not.
 
We both agree on Bertrand, but I think your Wallach take is interesting. Perhaps I shouldn't have linked the two. That said, I think its interesting how under utilized Wallach was in his time with 'EEI and how he's a major part of the areas top morning show. Guys like Shepard and Meter were given a much larger role at the station and they've struggled post-EEI. It's possible that Wallach's success is a mix of luck or chemistry and a number of other personalities would have thrived with Toucher and Rich. However, it's clear that Wallach was underutilized to some degree prior to TSH.
 

Scott Cooper

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As an out of towner, WEEI has been my go to when listening on my phone.  I agree with most of what everyone is saying, but don't kill me when I say I actually like Planet Mikey and I don't get the hate.  The guy is out of his mind yes, but I find him clever at times and can laugh at his homerisms.  
 
I haven't really given 98.5 a chance but will do so now.
 

URI

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You won't like it based on calling Mike Adams "clever"
 

Blacken

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Adams appears to the lowest of low-information listeners. He's Gresh but dumber.
 

J.McG

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I think WEEI bringing on Michael Smith as a host is a bit of a pipe dream at this point, when you consider that just about every staffing move they've made in the past 3 years was also a cost-cutting measure. Gotta think Smith is pulling at least mid-six figures at ESPN. He'd be crazy to leave a high-profile national gig with his own daily TV show & podcast, in addition to his writing and E:60 contributions, to jump onboard a sinking ship like WEEI. I could have seen it happening 5-6 years ago when Smith was still relatively unknown and Entercom was doling out multi-year contracts @ $1MM+/yr. Those days are long gone and probably won't be coming back anytime soon.

With that said, here's my proposed WEEI weekday lineup:

6 am - 10 am:  Host Dale Arnold plays role of middleman betwenn antagonists Gerry Callahan & Kirk Minihane. Dale keeps the dialogue on track and is able to rein in Callahan/Minihane when necessary. This trio was on the air for about a week when Dennis was on vacation several months back and it was the best show I'd heard on EEI in years. Callahan is much more tolerable when not constantly egged on by Dennis. May not win back the younger end of the 25-54 male demo from T&R, but they could make a dent in the middle to older portions.

10 am - 2 pm:  Host Mike Giardi with co-host Lou Merloni. Giardi has energy and personality, but without the phony radio persona of a Muttnansky. Have been impressed with him as a fill-in in the past. Still think Merloni has promise and can be salvaged if paired with the right co-host who is more capable of driving the conversation.

2 pm - 6 pm:  Michael Holley and Chris Mannix, with flash boy Mike Muttnansky. I've been really dissappointed with Holley since the demise of Dale & Holley, but WEEI hasn't done him any favors in his cohost pairings. For Holley to be successful, I think it's critical he's paired with someone he has real chemistry with (not Salk) and can relate to (not Ordway). Mannix, being a relatively young guy with local roots and national connections from his time at SI & NBC Sports, would be an interesting hire and could work well with Holley, similar to Max Kellerman back in the day. He's also done a decent job with fill-in radio duty on WEEI in years past, and more recently nationally with NBC Sports. He still needs some broadcasting seasoning, but there's promise if he's given time to develop. Plus the Holley/Manix duo would be the place to go for Celtics/NBA talk, one area both stations are lacking. I hate Muttnansky as a lead host, but think he could be effective as occassional comic relief / ball busting target.

6 pm - 10 pm: John Ryder and a rotating member of WEEI.com staff (Rob Bradford, Alex Speier, Chris Price, DJ Bean, Mike Petraglia, et. al) or other Boston sports media guest, depending on season, news of the day, etc. Ryder continues to be the Tim Wakefield of the EEI staff and is the most underappreciated guy at the station. He's probably the most objective & rational guy on the radio, an anti-Adam Jones, which earns a thumbs-up in my book. Unfortunately Ryder won't win you many ratings wars, but at least EEI still has the Sox & Celtics games at night going for them.

Guys I would drop ASAP:
John Dennis & Mikey Adams (no explanation needed), John Saucier (is he supposed to be funny?), and Mike Salk. I know he has his proponents among the media critics, but I'm sorry, Salk does absolutely nothing for me. People around here were ready and willing to embrace him when he started and he still flopped, failing to generate a buzz or ratings pop in his first full Boston Arbitron book. I agree with several others that Salk is dull and resorts to inventing contrived "First Take"-like controversies in order to generate conversation (is the Patriot Way dead? Are pro sports more entertaining when athletes are on PEDs?) And perhaps most aggravating is his belief that the listening audience gives two and a half craps about the trivial happenings of his day-to-day life. I can only listen to Salk drone on and on about his difficulty finding a parking space, the pedicure he got over the weekend, and his excessive perspiration problems for so long before remembering just how much the show sucks. I don't know precisely what it is, but there's something about Salk that just rubs me the wrong way. There's no chemistry between Salk & Holley either, and it's starting to sound like they're having a harder time hiding their dislike for one another.
 

Rocco Graziosa

owns the lcd soundsystem
SoSH Member
Sep 11, 2002
11,345
Boston MA
RedOctober3829 said:
That's an insult to Gresh. Mike Adams is the worst talk show host I've ever heard in any genre. I'd rather listen to nails on a chalkboard than any of what he has to say.
 
 
I'm gonna get killed for this but I really don't get the Gresh hate.  He has FANTASTIC chemistry with Zolak, he knows football enough, has an OPINION, and seems to take all this stuff with a grain of salt.  He's the anti Salk.  The show feels like a couple of guys sitting around talking about sports.  Its certainly not directed at the SOSH crowd, but its LIGHT YEARS better than Planet Mikey, who just rants and raves and tries to be funny in a similar way that Robin Williams tried to be funny when he was high on coke.  He'll say something in a goofy way thats SUPPOSED to be funny, but then you think about it and say to yourself "wait a minute, thats not funny.  Thats not funny at ALL"
 

John Marzano Olympic Hero

has fancy plans, and pants to match
Dope
Apr 12, 2001
20,557
 The guy is out of his mind yes, but I find him clever at times and can laugh at his homerisms.
 
Mike Adams is about as clever as a sledgehammer to the balls. 
 
I'm gonna get killed for this but I really don't get the Gresh hate.
 
Gresh is arrogantly stupid. He thinks that he knows everything, but his takes are pedestrian, predictable and so boringly mainstream I could read ESPN the Magazine and learn the same stuff. He's aggressively loud for no discernible reason and he's the personification of "the hot sports take". 
 
Does he have good chemistry with Zolak? Yes, you're probably right about that, but that's half the game. I mean I have good chemistry with my friends, but you wouldn't want to hear us talk sports for four hours a day, would you? And his "football insider" schtick (I PLAYED THE GAME!) is so god damn laughable, I can't believe that people actually take him semi-seriously. He was a backup lineman for URI (sorry, URI) not exactly an SEC powerhouse. They're not even a CAA powerhouse (sorry again, URI).
 
EDIT: One last thing, Andy Gresh is Glenn Ordway without the charm. In other words, he's an evolved Fred Smerlas* and I'm sure he was the best sports talker at the Alpha Beta Chug-a-lug house.
 
* If there was a Boston sports media evolution chart, Gresh would be the very next humanoid. It would look something like this:
 
Larry Johnson/Craig Mustard (they are like an ameba) --> Mike Adams -->  Fred Smerlas --> Andy Gresh --> Glenn Ordway --> Mike Felger --> Michael Smith
 

NortheasternPJ

Member
SoSH Member
Nov 16, 2004
13,871
The real problem with Gresh is he doesn't let anyone else talk, including his buddy Zo. Zo's trying to make a valid point gets 3 words in and Gresh just runs over him. If he could stop that the show would improve five fold immediately. 
 

wutang112878

Member
SoSH Member
Nov 5, 2007
6,066
Red(s)HawksFan said:
The implication of Jon Wallach being an example of "EEI can get talent but not develop it" hurts your argument, I think.  He was doing flashes/fill-ins for the mid-day show as well as weekends at EEI for years before TSH "plucked" him away.  He could not crack their lineup which is why he went to Sports Hub.
 
His role isnt that much different thant at EEI, and he brings some knowledge and perspective on sports that T&R desperately really need.  Thats probably not developing talent, maybe more better utilizing talent but its something TSH did much better than EEI nonetheless.
 

Rocco Graziosa

owns the lcd soundsystem
SoSH Member
Sep 11, 2002
11,345
Boston MA
John Marzano Olympic Hero said:
Does he have good chemistry with Zolak? Yes, you're probably right about that, but that's half the game. I mean I have good chemistry with my friends, but you wouldn't want to hear us talk sports for four hours a day, would you? 
 
Um yes?  
 
May 24, 2013
13
I stopped listening to 'EEI about a month ago and borrowed Books on CD from the library instead.  Minihane seemed inhibited on the morning show; not his usual self.  I've read his columns and he reminded me of a better version of Gregg Doyel.  He was sort of a troll, but a good one and had some well-thought out stuff in his writng.  That didn't come out on D&C.
 
Salk sounds like Eric Kuselius, formerly on ESPN Radio (I think he is on the Golf Channel now); a nasally guy who will sound like Joe Castiglione when he gets older.  COme to think of it, he sounds a little like Leonard Hofstader, too.
 
But what has me scratching my head is the continued employment of Mikey Adams.  Forget that he sounds like the dirty uncle your family tries to forget exists, but there has to be 200 nites a year when he only does the show for an hour.  Why don't they just stretch out Salk and Holley on nites where the Sox or C's are playing?  Or simulcast ESPN from 6 to whenver?