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10-22-2012, 04:33 PM
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Thanks for generating the thread, it has proven to be an enjoyable read with many solid points throughout.

A longtime listener, here’s my two cents.

Overall, the Team 1200 has greatly improved through the elimination of the distracting, adolescent banter of Jim "hijack any intelligent conversation" Jerome and egomaniacal fill-in Kurt “the creepy whisperer” Stoodley in the mornings.

My grades, in order of aptitude:

AJ Jakubec A-
Most solid all-around sports host at the station. Encyclopedic brain on junior hockey and collegiate sports, and unlike the vast majority, has actually been to many of the sporting events throughout North America. A bit snippy and arrogant at times with callers.

Pierre McGuire B+
The most connected regular guest on the station. Plugged in to the NHL and has a solid take on any issue. Shameless self-promotion is good for a laugh, though I appreciate the level of behind-the-scenes insight provided. Gets extremely defensive when challenged and does have the occasional off day where he has 'tude.

Shawn Simpson B+
Brings an excellent insider perspective from the executive offices of the NHL. Strong list of contacts. Rambling and soliloquies have been toned down. While likely unintentional, he sometimes comes across as an all-knowing father telling the naive audience how it is. Clearly prefers storytelling over interviewing guests, but most are pretty interesting.

Steve Lloyd B+
Best interviewer at the Team1200. Strong, clear voice. Always well-prepared with a lineup of relevant questions and faces the unenviable daily task of keeping York on topic. Only minor peeves are his penchant for stating the obvious and an over-reliance on simplistic sarcasm “oh, Crosby’s good? Nooo, really? Nooo. Heh, heh. How could that be?” etc. Longwinded, repetitive trivia list segments can be really hard to listen to, but that's Gross' problem moving forward.

Bob McKenzie B
Enjoy his pregame spots. Though not as plugged in as in his heyday, still very well informed and provides solid takes on all things NHL. Is a logical guy. Not as hardheaded as Pierre.

Dave Schreiber B
The ultimate homer, but I love it. Unparalleled enthusiasm, especially when coupled with Gord and/or a poor call by one of the zebras. Miss his calling - more like yelling - of 67s home games, though nice to hear him doing some Bingo tilts with Grady Whittenburg.

Eric Macramella B
Evidently he is carving out quite the niche for himself, using the Team 1200 as a launching pad, dude is already the go-to guy on CTV national news for any legal issues in sports. Comes across as a condescending, smirking know-it-all (par for the course among most in his profession), though brings in a strong lineup of relevant guests and provides insight into the business side of sports. For those who appreciate intelligent talk, this is one of the only shows that regularly delivers substance.

Graeme Ivory/Richard Starnes B
Enjoyable weekly hour-long soccer show. While not a big fan of the sport outside of major internationals, both hosts stay on track, are easy to listen to and cover a great deal of ground from local to international news. Starnes offers practical takes in line with his weekly Citizen columns.

Murray Wilson B
Clear radio voice. Is well-tuned to the Montreal situation and brings a unique outsider perspective (given that he is not in bed with Sens management).

JR Ron-berg B-
Definitely the strongest member of TGoR over the years, and the one most likely to keep the train on the rails and talk sports. Let Jerome get away with murder for years. Morning show lacks structure and consistent expert sports talk. Like others here have stated, takes constructive criticism too personally rather than seeing the big picture. With what he has to work with and clear budget contraints, has done a good job with the reorganization of the station.

Dean Brown/Gord Wilson B-
When they are “on”, they can be one of the best play-by-play/color radio combos in the NHL. Alas, on radio, they often banter for minutes on end with insider jokes, which is both annoying and insulting to one wanting to hear the in-game action. Like David Letterman, Dean can go from the ultimate goofball to the know-it-all serious guy, thus it is hard to take either 100% seriously. Neither will challenge Senator management. Still one of the better duos in hockey and Dean is pretty solid as a fill-in for HNIC.

Lee Versage B-
Yes he has a terribly nasal, high-pitched voice, but brings a great deal of enthusiasm and knows local sports. With the regular 9:30-noon show, evening shows and 67s telecasts, probably the hardest-working guy at the station in recent years. Had to carry some of the biggest duds in the history of the Team1200 (Kulka, Melanson etc.)

Steve Warne C
Not a fan of the morning show. Not enough intelligent content outside of the 8:05-8:20 spot. Tries too hard to be cool and funny. Half hour segments reading emails from the same uninteresting clique makes for poor radio. The off-topic fluff and inane humor is for the lobotomized masses. Too nosy with callers and JR, should think first before asking some questions.

Kevin Haime C
Show is mainly a collection of his buddies and their VIP trips to elite courses and tournaments. Occasionally gets a known golfer in for a segment. Bob Weeks and Dean Brown interviews are usually excellent. A few tips mixed in, though this is more free advertising for his golf clinic. Clearly has a high opinion of himself and never shies away about saying he’s a top-100 golf instructor according to one magazine.

Jason York D+
Improved greatly recently, but still hard to listen to. Like Jerome, is easily distracted and provides WAY too much fluff, all while harping on the same thing repeatedly (sweaters, wings, Nashville etc.). Certainly likeable, but he profoundly lacks deep insight on anything. Outside of the enjoyable Barry Trotz spots, has limited NHL contacts relative to his predecessor, Garry Galley (remember Ray Bourque's regular segments? Those were great interviews). With all the worthless off-topic granny talk, is more suited to his current late morning slot.

Side note: I find it amusing that Sportsnet invested heavily in sending York to every Senators road game to make one obvious comment each intermission (“they need to stay out of the box”) with a phoney smile while Ian Mendes carried the segment. SN also did this with their Vancouver, Edmonton and Calgary games, sending an ex-player on road trips to make one or two simple remarks. Meanwhile, the same company refuses to field a competitive baseball team in Toronto.

Dave Gross D
I find this guy extremely obnoxious, though less than in prior years. His immature constant change in tone is not funny. Really smug and condescending with genuine callers, especially last season during the post-game Senators shows. Working with Simpson has helped his cause greatly. Does well with interviews by following the Lloyd routine (list of predictable questions set up in advance).

Bruce Garrioch F
The Mike Milbury and Nick Kypreos of the Team1200. A loudmouth bully with zero substance. Breathes heavily into the mic. When offered a simple question, takes long, unnatural pauses to collect his longwinded and often convoluted thoughts. As with the aforementioned equivalents, when he speculates one thing, the precise opposite is likely closer to the truth.

Angry Al F-
How is Jerome’s lackey still on the radio? He doesn’t even know the basics of broadcasting, like speaking into the mic correctly. Half the time, he’s too far away, and one hears nothing then BAM! Shouting into the mic the last two words of the paragraph, so you might figure out half the thought if you listen really carefully.

A typical Angry Al sentence, as heard though the radio at a normal volume:
"Mm rmm mmmh fmmm mmm rhhh mmmh HURTS Y'KNOW?"

Not reviewed:
-Tony Greco (it’s an hour-long infomercial for his fitness business and hence does not warrant a review).

-ex-player fill-ins (White, Donovan etc.). I find it hypocritical how these guys go years as players providing absolutely nothing of value to the media, and the moment they retire, they opportunistically run to join the local media and are instantly branded as NHL insiders.


Random thoughts:

Why can’t the Team1200 bring in a female host to mix things up and bring a fresh perspective like 90+ percent of your competitors?

Really wish there was a regular weekly segment with Denis Potvin, especially given the lengthy lockout. I love his hockey stories, offbeat humor and unpredictably zany observations. His interview when hired by Sportsnet was an instant classic.

Judging from the comments on here, most would prefer hearing shows from other parts of the country far more than Jim Rome or Fox overnight. JT the Brick's redundant nightly rants get very tiresome, and nobody in Canada cares about U.S. high school football or the WNBA.

After Jays games, why do you always cut away from the post-game shows with Mike Wilner (often it is simply to rush back to late night Fox Sports). There’s more insight in that half-hour show than a full season of Jason York!

The Team1200 have some of the most appallingly asinine commercials, especially the embarrassing jobshop dot ca ones with the same two idiots that play multiple times each hour at night. I always turn the station off when these ads strike. Ditto the severely-overplayed cupid ads.

Overall, the Team1200 is moving in the right direction (appreciate the addition of Jays, Bingo and CFL games). Still a long way to go if they aspire to be in the same league as the meatier FAN 590 and TSN 990 Montreal.

Last edited by stigs17: 10-22-2012 at 05:15 PM.
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