39 thoughts to “Most Annoying Part of the MSG Telecast?”

  1. I’m not huge on HD, so definitely Smith for me. It’s not even that Smith is awful, he is just nothing compared to Frazier.

  2. I’m let down that this poll doesn’t tackle the two worst aspect of the MSG Telecast (to me. OK, I’m a musician):
    1) the choice of a Bob Denver song, “Take Me Home, Country Roads” to represent our Knickerbockers, and;
    2) the outRAGEously out-of-tune shouter who creeps up through the whole song, climaxing in his even-to-deaf-people out of tune “Home!” at the very, very end.
    I’m beleaugered.

  3. John Denver, not Bob Denver. Bob Denver was Gilligan.

    Al Trautwig’s minimal presence is the most annoying thing by far for me. when we played Miami on Monday, they had just come off that game with Dallas the day before, so he was showing highlights. his lead-in quote, delivered in his typical smarmy and smug manner, was “the Miami Heat facing the Dallas Mavericks, who still can’t let go of losing four straight times in the Finals last year”. um, let’s see, Al, this was the first time they played each other this year, and the refs robbed the Mavs last year, so yeah, it’s on their minds. he and Michael Kay need to be banished to Peoria ASAP.

  4. The most annoying is not being able to see it! First, they blacked out all of the Knicks games in my area. Then they removed the MSG channel altogether. Then they finally have a free week of NBA League Pass. I go to watch the game today and it’s not on. Now the free week is over. Fire Isiah.

  5. One of the best things about the Yankees moving to YES was that I no longer had to deal with Al Trautwig on a routine basis.

    His Knicks exposure is, thankfully, quite limited. Although, when he IS on, it is terrible.

    A really funny thing happened right after the Yankees left MSG (remember, this is right after Trautwig signed a big deal with MSG, so he was stuck), he was doing an interview with Clyde, and he was asking questions with a Yankee bent. It was hilariously sad. “Is wearing the Knick uniform as special as it is to wear Yankee pinstripes?”


  6. Michael Kay is almost as bad, although I get the sense that YES is starting to realize that at least.

    maybe I’m alone, but I kind of like Kenny Smith more than Clyde. neither is ideal, but Smith at least follows the whole league, Clyde has never taken his job too seriously. his vocab rules, his outfits rule, his demeanor rules, but I’m not sure how much insight he brings. maybe I don’t even prefer Smith to Clyde, but I do like the change of pace, kind of an outside perspective on what’s going on. it might be cool also to get the now ubiquitous-at-MSG Ewing and/or Starks to sit in and do a bit of color occasionally.

  7. The road games not in HD, but more importantly, for those of us who don’t have HD anyways, the road games always looking really bad anyways. Millions to spend on programming output and signal reception, and somehow we have the worst looking road game presentation in the NBA. Unless there’s a team with worse looking live-game coverage, but I doubt that.

  8. Yeah, besides HD, the road games DO look bad, period. ESPECIALLY the ones when they play the lesser markets of the NBA.

    And yeah, Jon, Kay and Trautwig are two birds of a feather, and it is very pleasing to me to see YES slowly but surely adding more and more actual GOOD announcers to their staff.

    Smith does know more about the rest of the league than Clyde, but Clyde is one of the few “staples” who doesn’t annoy the heck out of me, so I don’t want to lose him!

  9. I also dislike Mike Breen…he doesn’t strike me as a B-Ball fan…Demonstratively and Emphatically shouts out player stats that are not impressive and when he realizes no one cares about them he decides to go on ‘player watch’, example:
    “Jamal Crawford with his 17 th point of the game!!!!”
    (fast forward 30 seconds later, in an even louder voice and in utter disbelief as if the player he’s watching has just surpassed Wilt Chamberlin’s career scoring mark),
    “Jamal Crawford going to the line with a chance for HIS 18 AND 19th POINTS OF THE GAME!!!!!”

  10. “The road games not in HD, but more importantly, for those of us who don?t have HD anyways, the road games always looking really bad anyways. Millions to spend on programming output and signal reception, and somehow we have the worst looking road game presentation in the NBA. Unless there?s a team with worse looking live-game coverage, but I doubt that.”

    at least they don’t use those stupid new cameras that ABC likes. guys, we don’t need a closer angle to see the game, we JUST WANT TO ACTUALLY SEE THE GAME. thank you. I actually saw an angle on a FT the other day that didn’t have the basket in the picture. um, you might be missing the point there, guys.

  11. I signed up for NBA League Pass so I can watch the Knicks. I’m on the west coast. On Sunday, the only game they broadcast was the Boston game. To make matters worse, the quality of the picture was so low, I thought I was watching somebody’s home video of high school ball. I’m not used to watching videos this bad without Bob Saget doing commentary. I have to go with the lack of HD.

  12. i love clyde as much as the next person, but kenny is genius with the stoner digressions and his general air of “wait, where am i?”. best moment i remember was last season: mike breen was trying to hype up the king kong remake (in a confusing promo placement sorta way), asked kenny if he was going to go check it out, to which kenny replied “they made a remake? why? why would i go see a remake when i haven’t even the seen the original yet?”

    also: i just discovered this, anyone else heard about?


    basically, you install a couple of programs (tvu + sopcast are the ones i used), then you can watch any of the games listed by clicking the links. and it actually works: video quality is ok smallscreen and blurry-as-hell for fullscreen, but for free, it’s pretty nice. managed to check out the heat/bulls game on saturday using the sopcast link. worth a look!

  13. “Clyde is the Phil Rizzuto of basketball.”

    dunno, I hold Phil pretty sacred as a commentator, listening to him growing up, so entertaining (mostly unintentionally). have you seen the book of poetry a couple of guys compiled from his game calls, ‘O Holy Cow’? hilarious stuff, I posted a bunch of them here:


    Clyde does have the same kind of jaundiced, bored, ‘why am I here?’ take on things, but from a really different perspective.

  14. Doug e fresh is an icon. 20+ years in the rap game.

    Bobbito and Granger commercials are fun.

    enjoy listening to Kenny. Clyde has sentimental value, but Kenny is the future.

    Dont have HD, now will get it for my wife;s bday — ha

    So that leaves Earl Monroe

  15. i actually think the granger commercials are pretty funny.

    the monroe commercials, on the other hand, are really damn annoying. that random lady challenges earl to a game of one-on-one, and then sinks a HALF COURT shot! that’s bullshit! not to mention the back and forth camera business and the awful dialogue. it’s horrible.

  16. Mike Breen is easily the worst part of Knicks broadcasts. When Kenny Smith’s in there instead of Clyde it’s disappointing, but that’s not because Kenny’s bad, it’s because Clyde’s so good.

  17. i hate the msg sportsdesk commercials that start off with the grossly misleading (and usually baffling) lead-in, “Big win for the Knicks tonight!” Like that ever happens.

    Also, it’s interesting to hear all the Knicks/Yankee announcer comparisons since both stations (MSG only recently) seem to prefer to only hire homers who will never, ever criticize the team and especially not the management/general dircetion of the team. As we all know, this has always been the policy in the Bronx, but it’s disappointing that the Garden has come to follow the same formula. I miss Marv and Johnny Hoops!

  18. OK my bad about Bob Denver/John Denver… Although I’d still say neither is stylistically closer to the Knicks or basketball than the other.
    I’m sorry to rag on an “icon” (Confucius), but:
    Bad is bad.

  19. At MSG, at least, the homerism appears to be something they intentionally drill into the announcers.

    At YES, they appear to just pick announcers who are in love with the Yankees (except Kaat and Singleton, who have the whole “don’t criticize the Yankees” thing beaten out of them years before YES showed up), although thankfully, they appear to be moving away from that slightly as of late.

    So, for instance, I don’t think Breen is a homer. He just knows he can’t say certain things.

    Breen’s most annoying attribute to me is his Buck-like/Costas-esque moral superiority.

  20. i agree. especially about breen. he’s a bit of a priss, but otherwise a good company man. what did sports guy call him? the forest gump of nba brawls?

  21. I voted for Doug E. Fresh. For cryin out loud we live in New York. The best rapper MSG could find was Doug E. Fresh? I could understand if this was Utah, and the pickins were slim. New York is the home of Busta, Nas, Mos Def, 50 Cent, Method Man, etc. etc.

    Doug E. raps likes a Leaping Lenny Poffo poem. Even Wikipedia says Fresh was washed up years ago. (“Fresh did not record again until 1992’s Doin’ What I Gotta Do, issued by MC Hammer’s Bust It Records. Rap had changed appreciably in the interim, and Fresh seemed a little lost.”)

    If I never hear that song again I’ll be happy.

  22. What bugs me about the HIP commercial.

    1. She KNOWS who Monroe is, yet thinks he’s making a comeback? She must have some knowledge of basketball but draws a completely ludicrous conclusion.

    2. Ol’ girl never makes that halfcourt shot. Look at her form, I’d be shocked if it reached the top of the key!

    3. Monroe has been challenged to a game of 1-on-1. Yet as soon as she drains one in his face, he fronts like they weren’t even playing against each other — “I’m glad you’re on MY team!” Weak! Take your whuppin like a man!

    4. It’s on a lot.

  23. Nesta-
    absolutely! and can’t she check the ball before she goes heaving up a halfcourt shot? and what’s with that little “count it” hand gesture earl does while saying “heeeeey!” and what was earl doing standing at center court, alone, dribbling a basketball?

    i’m never buying hip health insurance. never.

  24. Of course Doug E. is washed up…that’s exactly why he’s the one doing the commercial.

    They should get Rakim to do one. At least his washed up self is still better than most.

  25. Rakim wouldn’t be a bad fit, what about Talib Kweli? He’s exciting, aware, HIP? (Sorry that wasn’t funny). The only issue is what if a new rapper gets beef with Jay-z because hes owns a rival team. What if Nas bought the Knicks? I know the Jay-Z and Nas beef is over but if it was Nas v. Jay-Z 4 times a year? Pheominal

  26. Rakim used to the the Ny Knicks song at least last time I was at the garden it was playing, why dont they use that song instead?

  27. Breen really gets on my nerves (be it on MSG or ABC or ESPN) but he’s not nearly as bad as most play by play announcers. I have a lot of fun listening to Gus Johnson. He’s definitely more of a homer for the Knicks, but I like how he plays off Clyde or Kenny (who are both enjoyable and insightful). I think Crispino has called a game or two this year. Now he’s just awful!

    This is a funny article rating NBA announcers…

  28. It IS funny how much of a homer Gus Johnson is, but yet, I still find him more entertaining than, say, Sterling.

    Here’s my (fairly weak, I will admit) rationalization – when Gus freaks out over a play, I think it legitimately is Gus freaking out over a play, while when Sterling freaks out over a play, I think it is just Sterling taking the opportunity to do one of his “trademark” phrases.

    The former is (to take a page from Gus’s book) more “pure” than the latter, in my opinion.

  29. By the way, miik, I forgot to thank you for the link to the announcers bit.

    VERY amusing.

  30. Mike Breen is, without a doubt, the worst part of MSG broadcasts. The incessant rambling about minutia is frustrating enough; combined with his whining commentary he’s the worst announcer in the NBA. Conversely, Gus Johnson is a terrific announcer. Johnson is actually entertaining to listen to, much like Albert was.

    Running a close second to Mike Breen are the constant facial closeups of Isiah Thomas/players/spectators. Not only do these shots usually linger for at least 5 seconds longer than necessary but MSG production frequently forgets to cut to the actual game. I liken it to someone who feels the need to constantly look their passenger in the eye while driving. Focus on the task at hand!

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