MIAMI, FL - JUNE 21: LeBron James of the Miami Heat answers questions from the media next to the Larry O'Brien Finals Championship trophy during his post game press conference after they won 121-106 against the Oklahoma City Thunder in Game Five of the 2012 NBA Finals on June 21, 2012 at American Airlines Arena in Miami, Florida. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Darren Rovell thinks the Heat are NOT two-time NBA Champions. Or something like that.
There are a few things in this world I don't really get, as hard as I try to understand them, and one of them is why people listen to, follow on Twitter, care about where he's working, and in general don't just simply ignore Darren Rovell. The sports business news reporter got some headlines this week when he tweeted (Darren Rovell is the Twitter GOD, if you hadn't heard already) that he'll be returning to ESPN after seven years at NBC. Does anyone even remember Rovell's ESPN tenure? I don't, and I like it that way.
But the real reason I bring up Rovell is that on Friday, he took to the social media site and claimed this gem:
Not sure 2-time NBA champs was the right way to market the Heat title. Totally different squad. Probably different fans too.
Perhaps this is Rovell's way of taking a jab at the Heat's lack to real "fans", which is not a new concept by any stretch of the imagination. It's not just since LeBron James came to town, the Heat have always had a gimmicky fan base - all Miami sports franchises do. But if Rovell is serious, then the marketing collateral the Heat shove out to the world should read something like: "2012 Miami Heat: Where LeBron Finally Won! (But we also won in 2006 before everyone hated us)"
So if we take Rovell's logic, the New York Yankees' 27 World Championships should really only count for like, seven. I mean, certainly the Yankees' four titles from 1996-2000 can all be considered one large Super Duper World Series title, because each of those teams had Derek Jeter, Mariano Rivera, Paul O'Neill and Bernie Williams. But that 2009 title - whoa boy now the Yankees have Alex Rodriguez and a whole new legion of A-Rod fanatics and 8-year-olds who don't know who Graeme Lloyd was and so no, this is not title 27...this is A-Rod Money Title Number 1!
Ladies and gents, Darren Rovell, your soon-to-be-again ESPN Sports Media expert. Good lord.
Quick Hits and Misses
CBS Sports Radio: CBS announced this week that it's creating a national radio network that it claims will be the most listened to network in the country. Basically, think ESPN Radio, just CBS' version. There will be national shows that local affiliates can choose to broadcast, and there will also be national hourly updates that CBS stations will air. How does this affect New York? Well, 660 WFAN is CBS owned, so our favorite local sports talk shows could be sounding a bit different soon.
I doubt CBS will make any major changes to WFAN's lineup. Sorry, Mike Francesa isn't going anywhere. But even worse off, maybe this means no more John Minko on the 20/20 update. Maybe WFAN will beam in a national update instead, which will suck because nothing's better than hearing Francesa berate a caller and finish off a rant with "Here's da Mink Man..."
Lampley's Call To Action: HBO Sports continues to pump out great sports programming, including the new show The Fight Game with Jim Lampley. The second episode aired last weekend and went deeper into the shocking and controversial decision victory by Timothy Bradley over Manny Pacquiao. Lampley interviewed judge Duane Ford, who scored the fight dubiously for Bradley, among others. But the highlight of the show came at the end, where Lampley went on a bit of rant imploring fans to "Occupy Boxing"; basically to boycott bad fights and make their voices heard about the sport's bad practices. It was really quite compelling given that, obviously, Lampley calls most of HBO's major fights, and telling fans to stay away from bad fights (his network puts on its fair share of stinkers) was a bold statement. It probably won't happen, and wouldn't work in boxing's corrupt old boys club, but well done Jim! Also, keep wearing those awesome hipster glasses.