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Why Can’t All Broadcasting Be Like This?

Sometimes commentary can be better than the event it covers.  A recent Nets/Celtics contest was just such an occasion.  While nobody outside of the northeast really wants to watch that game, that doesn’t mean that you can do whatever you want on the air and expect to get away with it scott-free.  That’s a lesson a particular announcer may be learning right now.

If you thought Jimmy Dykes and Brad Nessler had some awkward moments during their college broadcasts, what with the whole “Partner” thing and Dykes insisting on repeating the same double-entendres through an entire game, wait until you see this.  The above video sets up what eventually becomes a terrible exchange between two veterans of the game-calling business, Ian Eagle and Mike Fratello.  Fratello tries to discuss the use of “slip screens,” which apparently annoys Eagle enough that he uses maybe my favorite analysis: “Kevin Garnett had his foot inside the three-point line, so Mike that means they give him two points.”  Sharp observation.

Later in the broadcast, Eagle tries to make nice.  It really only makes things more awkward:

Eagle says, “on a serious note,” that Fratello is a “pretty interesting dude.”  Not only does that sound almost exactly like something I would say when starting to make fun of somebody, but it smacks of disingenuousness.  But, it seems as though they’ve made nice, right?  Apparently not.  Check out this final, agonizingly awkward exchange:

That, uh… that was something.  I don’t know if Eagle was just upset that he had to call a Nets game, or if he was annoyed that he seemed to be ignorant regarding slip screens earlier in the broadcast, but apparently something had gotten under his skin enough to merit the above, uh, scolding.  Who knows what caused it, but it made for entertaining television.  In the new era of “awkward comedy” like The Office and Parks and Recreation, Ian Eagle may have just carved himself a spot at the top next to Michael Scott.  My only question is, was it more or less awkward than this guy telling his date about his World of Warcraft guild?  You decide.  I’m just going to watch them all on repeat.

Article written by Corey Nichols

38 Comments for Why Can’t All Broadcasting Be Like This?



  1. Ridge Runner
    9:06 am April 17, 2012 Permalink

    It’s strange… I got bored & tired reading this. Oh well… 2pm will be here before we know it.



  2. JoeMoney333
    9:09 am April 17, 2012 Permalink

    Wow, That last video was just uncomfortable to even watch. …. Yea.. wow



  3. Nick
    9:10 am April 17, 2012 Permalink

    Hey Corey, can the 9:00 A.M. post just be a series of bright, flashing lights and loud noises? If not, I don’t think Ridge Runner is going to be able to follow it or pay attention. Same goes for a lot of our illustrious commentators.



  4. BCG in Indiana
    9:13 am April 17, 2012 Permalink

    Indiana just offered a scholly to an 8th grader. Is that you Billy?



  5. Manbearpig
    9:14 am April 17, 2012 Permalink

    hahaha….just skip and watch the last video. that is great



  6. Golfer
    9:14 am April 17, 2012 Permalink

    I thought in the first two clips they were just giving each other a playful hard time, but its obvious in the 3rd clip that Eagle just flat does not like that Mike guy. Wow.



  7. Ridge Runner
    9:16 am April 17, 2012 Permalink

    3…naked women is preferred.

    5…makes ya wonder how much of this is staged just to get attention from the tv side. It’s 2012 & nuthin’ surprises me.



  8. Devastation Inc
    9:17 am April 17, 2012 Permalink

    Not a good post but much better than the usual swishy hoo hoo bandcamp feelings stuff.



  9. BUCats
    9:19 am April 17, 2012 Permalink

    I want to see Ian Eagle beat down Mike Fratello. Do it up Ian



  10. Ridge Runner
    9:23 am April 17, 2012 Permalink

    Ian Eagle… -sounds like an movie name for an actor from an old western. just sayin’. Moving on…



  11. wow
    9:25 am April 17, 2012 Permalink

    Probably the ride up, 2 hours with YOU is probably why I’ve had enough tonight. I wonder if Fake Barney has these type of awkward encounters with fake Baby bop….



  12. Jared
    9:27 am April 17, 2012 Permalink

    10) lol ridge, doesn’t it though. haha



  13. tyrus
    9:33 am April 17, 2012 Permalink

    Most NBA I’ve watched this year or plan on watching. Glad so many former UK players reached their dream of playing in the NBA but that’s were my interest ends.



  14. John Ellis
    9:37 am April 17, 2012 Permalink

    Dykes says “Pardner”. Can’t pronounce the “t”. And when the broadcast begins he looks into the camera like one of Our Gang (dating myself) and counts to three, then gets serious. Can’t we start a petition to move him to the Big Twelve?



  15. kc
    9:44 am April 17, 2012 Permalink

    Ian Eagle…I thought that was a movie with Louis Gossett Jr.



  16. OogieBoogieMan
    9:45 am April 17, 2012 Permalink

    Wow… ya think that’s the last broadcast those two do together?



  17. Chupacabra
    9:48 am April 17, 2012 Permalink

    Eagle’s a little young for Andropause, but he sounded hormonal.



  18. Jimi,Garden of Eden
    9:54 am April 17, 2012 Permalink

    Sounds like two little school girls fighting over a Barbie Doll…what a Hoot!

  19. Wow, those dudes were about to go!



  20. UK Homer
    10:01 am April 17, 2012 Permalink

    18 years covering the NBA? At what point did he decide it was more about him than the players, teams, and fans. Probably one of the most overrated professions out there, but can’t blame them for cashing in.



  21. barn
    10:08 am April 17, 2012 Permalink

    13–me too. love my cats. but once they’re in the nba i almost never see them again.



  22. jaaayyyyy
    11:06 am April 17, 2012 Permalink

    Fratello never sounded at all condescending, and it was actually quite the opposite, throughout, to my ears. Since they sit next to one another, maybe Mike had some body language going on that gave Ian that impression. All said, Ian made himself look unprofessional and Fratello did a great job of keepin his composure.



  23. Alacat
    11:28 am April 17, 2012 Permalink

    To be honest, I got the sense that they were joking almost the entire time.



  24. cracka
    11:36 am April 17, 2012 Permalink

    completely side with the czar on this … other guy was a complete douche



  25. BPsycho
    11:43 am April 17, 2012 Permalink

    Not sure how much or how long you have watched NBA Corey but Fratello has been considered a joke to 90% of the rest of the league for a long time now. So I can understand why Eagle would call him out live… I’ll make a guess that he hates his guts like many people and players do, but he has to ride and sit with him for what must seem like a million hours because it’s his job. He is a douchebag that shouldn’t be on TV at all.

    I could go on but it would reach a Louisville hate level pretty quick lol



  26. HicksPickSix
    12:23 pm April 17, 2012 Permalink

    Did these guys attend the Corey Nichols College of Journalism?



  27. shelbyjoe
    12:46 pm April 17, 2012 Permalink

    I think that, while extremely unprofessional on Eagle’s part, was very entertaining. he should NEVER say that kind of crap on the air – that’s for after the broadcast. But I got a kick out of it.



  28. Really?
    12:52 pm April 17, 2012 Permalink

    Kentucky people are so college-loving, pro-hating, that KSR wouldn’t even post my comment on your NBA hatred. Can’t have any contrary opinions, KSR? You are the people that embarrass the state of Kentucky nationally.



  29. Really?
    12:55 pm April 17, 2012 Permalink

    Its cute that KSR posts your comments on their unprofessionalism, but disallow posts with actual talking-board content. Not every post is happy-go-lucky. If KY people are acting shamefully, they need to hear it, you included moderator. Grow up.



  30. Kampus Korner
    12:56 pm April 17, 2012 Permalink

    After viewing this I conclude Eagle is a jerk.



  31. frank the tank
    1:05 pm April 17, 2012 Permalink

    22 – Exactly my opinion. It doesn’t matter how big of a douche fratello can be on/off the air. (EYE)an eagle just made himself sound like a hormonal little teenage girl mad at the entire world.



  32. 502Cat
    1:05 pm April 17, 2012 Permalink

    Don’t mess with my boy Ian Eagle!



  33. Ian Eagle
    2:16 pm April 17, 2012 Permalink

    I am sorry for my outburst and confrontation with mike fratello. It was an extremely “heavy flow” day and my tampoon was driving me crazy.



  34. Ian Eagle
    2:18 pm April 17, 2012 Permalink

    I have sedated myself with large doses of Midol and chocolate ice cream. My deepest apologies to anyone that was offended.



  35. J A Brooks
    3:13 pm April 17, 2012 Permalink

    I appreciate Ian calling Fratello out, because usually he is a douche, but if you go back and listen to it again, Ian genuinely sounds confused when Fratello talks about the slip screen. He says “I have no idea what you’re talking about.” Then he gets annoyed that Fratello goes back and explains it?

    If the knew what it meant, which I’m sure he does, why put on the deer in the headlights routine. He said later that he just wanted him to explain it further for the audience but A)Eagle could’ve done that himself or B)He could’ve said “Can you elaborate for the audience”. Instead Eagle acts dumb then gets mad when Fratello answers his questions.

    Its hard without seeing all the body language but either way Eagle was extremely unprofessional.



  36. Oh my
    3:14 pm April 17, 2012 Permalink

    Wow – These guys worked some of the NCAA tourney together, did a decent job, and I’ve never sensed any animosity between them before this. Bottom line – Eagle can take him to task after the broadcast if he has a beef. Otherwise, he should have kept his trap shut and continued to drone on till the game was over. Uncool. Agree with 16 – this will be their last.



  37. Mudcreekmark
    4:16 pm April 17, 2012 Permalink

    We all don’t know the problems these guys have had in the past. But if you’re only going by this encounter,Eagle comes off like a jerk. It is very normal for a sportscaster to mention one thing or another and then explain to the viewers what that terminology means. As the clip starts, it seems as though Eagle is wanting Fratello to explain this to the viewers. Then I don’t know what the hell happened. But Eagle loses this one in the publics eye.



  38. Mudcreekmark
    4:18 pm April 17, 2012 Permalink

    Ian Eagle is changing his name to Iam Asshole.