Saturday, June 18, 2011

New Mike Lupica Show on 1050 ESPN radio NY a home run per NY Radio Message Board Chief Allan Sniffen

5/17/11, "XM 210 and Sirius 93 add sports talkers Lupica, Kay, Waddle & Silvy" "Mike Lupica is doing a GREAT job on WEPN/1050 ESPN NY. And that's not something I expected to be posting five weeks ago.

I'm not necessarily a Lupica fan. I find many of his columns and his TV appearances to be pretentious. He sometimes is trying so hard to be insightful that he goes overboard. Even with Imus, he seems like he's trying too hard to be funny when, really, saying less would be more.

But on the 1050/ESPN? He's got it beat. He comes through as a guy who knows sports, knows the nuances and can communicate clearly and in an engaging way. I've got to hand it to him. He's really that good. In fact, he's the one guy who I think could give Mike Francesa some real competition. I still think Francesa is the best of all. But if Lupica were on for more hours, Francesa would have a real competitor in PM Drive.

What I don't get about 1050 is how they can hire a guy like Lupica and then turn around and have a show like Ruocco and Lundberg. That could indeed be the worst radio sports show I've ever heard. Too gimmiky, too loud, too much hyping of the obvious and two guys who sound so much alike you can't even tell them apart. I think Jared Max is doing a fine job. Kay can be good when his show is focused on sports and not wandering around. And Mike and Mike (although syndicated) is a very good show (and, BTW, it's hitting younger demos by talking sports and not guy talk type gimmicks--hello?).

So, given all of this, if I were running 1050/ESPN and listening to my station, I'd be trying as hard as I could to convince Mike Lupica to do more hours. And, even more importantly, I'd learn to stop trying so hard to appeal to younger demos by putting gimmicky "guy talk" on the air and, instead, put real sports talkers on who can see beyond the basics. That's where the key to the ratings castle is hidden.

Mike Lupica has flat out amazed me. And I have to say... it's been a long time since I've heard anything on NY radio that has amazed me."


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