Familar Faces In New Places: The Three Man Booth

Monday, May 21, 2007


I really have no idea why they decided to do this, but ABC has added recently fired Rockets' Coach Jeff Van Gundy to the booth. He will join a team of Mike Breen and Mark Jackson that has done a stellar job this offseason, and ultimately screw up any chemistry the two had built together.

Here's the thing. Jeff Van Gundy is good....he did a great job with TNT in the past, and is an extremely intelligent guy. But the problem boils down to one simple thing. Three man booths rarely work in any sport, and are just down right dreadful in Basketball. There isn't enough time for two people other than the color guy to get their point across. They ultimately end up stepping on each other's toes the entire night, and the PbPer is left trying to pick up the pieces. The only sport this really works in is Football because of the time between plays.

I'm convinced that Mike Breen was dragged down during last year's playoffs by Hubie Brown. He has found a great partner in Mark Jackson, and sans Albert-Kerr they are the best grouping during these playoffs. Remember that this team has only been together for about five months (Christmas Day), which equates to 15 games (Jon Barry has worked some in Jackson's absence).
It just makes zero sense to add Van Gundy now, and possibly keep him on through the Finals.

I missed the Jazz-Spurs game yesterday when the three-man booth made it's debut. If you have anything to add, or want to debate my theory....please add it in the comments.

ESPN Basketball Booth News (Awful Announcing- Dec 2006)

9 Comments:

The conference finals lead to everything being done in excess. You throw in the worthless sideline girls, yes there are 2 now, and ABC has 5 people working the broadcast. TNT always brings in Collins to work the conference finals as well, so he'll be working with Albert and Kerr (and probably Craig Sager and David Aldridge, too).

The only time a three man booth works in basketball is if you have one guy playing the analysis/straight-on guy, and the other is playing the joker (See: McDonough-Raftery-Bilas, Enberg-McGuire-Packer) It's absolutely unneccessary in this case.

Anonymous said...
May 21, 2007, 3:13:00 PM  

Three man booths rarely work in any sport, and are just down right dreadful in Basketball

The greatest college basketball announcing team ever of Dick Enberg, Al Maguire, and a much younger and less venom-filled Billy Packer, which is the trio that did college basketball for NBC back in the late 70's and early 80's, disagrees with you.

Chris said...
May 21, 2007, 5:36:00 PM  

That picture of Van Gundy on Mourning's leg is classic! I still remember that game as if it were yesterday. Van Gundy flying around like that was hilarious!!

May 21, 2007, 5:37:00 PM  

i watched the booth was pretty good, van gundy was great.

larry burns said...
May 21, 2007, 8:24:00 PM  

Mark Jackson is pretty bad - from the Bill Walton school of repeating yourself and offering little insight. Van Gundy is great. Within 5 mins, he had put Jackson to shame.

Anonymous said...
May 21, 2007, 10:59:00 PM  

you know what AA, I'd actually use the Van Gundy picture fir the next create the caption.

mookie said...
May 21, 2007, 11:46:00 PM  

The best thing Breen has done in his career was to get the hell away from Imus. I don't watch the NBA, but I've always thought he was pretty good.

Bruce said...
May 22, 2007, 1:10:00 AM  

I think ESPN made a mistake in hiring Mark Jackson as an analyst. He goes Hubie Brown one step further with his preachy, pedantic tone. Silence is a relief.

Anonymous said...
May 28, 2007, 10:08:00 PM  

I agree that Jackson is terrible. He tends to talk like he knows exactly what the player is talking about or thinking. Also, gives little silly comments like "Ginobili, give us a little smile before you go up for the layup" when Gin is just gritting his teeth.

Anonymous said...
May 29, 2007, 2:09:00 AM  

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