Despite paying a boatload of cash to the NHL to broadcast the league on its networks, ESPN is not precisely profitable over hockey followers.
On ESPN’s Thursday version of “First Take,” Stephen A. Smith, Michael Kay and Molly Qerim have been discussing which New York skilled sports activities group will win a championship subsequent.
Kay, the lead play-by-play announcer for the Yankees, replied with the New York Rangers, citing their latest addition of Patrick Kane.
Smith and Qerim thought Kay’s response was manner out of left discipline.
“Oh lord. … The solely factor I find out about hockey is that the puck is black, and I really like [NHL commissioner] Gary Bettman — that’s my buddy, who I at all times go to the hockey video games with … soccer, basketball, baseball,” Smith stated.
“They do not rely …,” Qerim answered, saying she meant “no disrespect.”
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Later on within the day, Kay hopped on his ESPN New York radio present with co-host Don La Greca, the Rangers’ play-by-play announcer. The ESPN hosts are tight-knit, however La Greca was “disgusted” by Smith’s feedback.
“I take exception to that. ‘Why are we delicate?’” La Greca stated on “The Michael Kay Show” when discussing why hockey followers did not recognize the jab at their sport. “ESPN has rights. They broadcast video games. They had the Stanley Cup Final final yr. And a serious present of theirs simply says they do not rely? …
“Stephen’s gotta do a greater job. He sits there, they usually get MMA, and he talks MMA. They get hockey, speak some hockey. I’m not saying you gotta be fluent in each single sport, however Michael says Rangers. ‘They don’t rely?’ And we’re supposed to simply go, ‘Yeah, I assume they don’t rely.’ And we’re delicate? Give me a break. That’s a foul job by Stephen. Awful job by Stephen. … I’m disgusted by him.”
Kay did have a reasonably first rate level. The Blueshirts made the Eastern Conference finals final yr and have solely gotten higher with loads of huge trades inside the final couple weeks. The Nets and Knicks, regardless of the latter’s newest sizzling stretch, aren’t precisely championship favorites.
The World Series (Yankees and Mets) will not be performed till late October, and the Jets and Giants are in all probability on the surface wanting in on the Super Bowl greater than 11 months from now.
The Rangers are in third place within the Metropolitan Division and will face the Hudson River rival New Jersey Devils within the first spherical of the NHL Playoffs.
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