John Saunders And Bill Walton Are Pretty Cozy During The FIBA Championships

Friday, August 31, 2007


You know what I hate more than anything else when it comes to announcing? When people are lazy. You have the coolest job ever, and you don't prepare at all (Joe Morgan) and you end up looking like an idiot.

This isn't exactly the same thing, but it's close. John Saunders and Bill Walton have been broadcasting the entire FIBA Championships from Bristol.....

With the U.S. on the way to a 113-76 victory, Saunders and Walton had plenty of time to fill, and they began talking about Brazil's basketball history, most notably the 1987 Pan American Games final when Brazil upset the U.S. 120-115 to win the gold medal. Saunders noted that after the U.S. lost to the Soviet Union in the 1988 Olympic semifinals, U.S. basketball officials decided it was time to send the best players to the Olympics.

That, of course, is wrong. The U.S. did not force the world to allow NBA players into the Olympics; the rest of the world invited them. But when I asked someone from ESPN where Saunders and Walton were so we could have a friendly conversation about that, there was more shocking news.

ESPN's play-by-play man and analyst are not in Las Vegas. They are calling the game action from a studio in Bristol, Conn., a continent away. An ESPN spokesman described that as "a production decision," which means even ESPN -- a network with more money than Fort Knox and Mark Cuban combined -- has a budget, too.
A production decision? Why not just do that for every game then??? That just really rubs me the wrong way. It's not like they Championships are in Prague! They're in freaking Las Vegas!!!

That's some bad history from a network that didn't show up (Awful Announcing)

Posted by Awful Announcing- at 1:56 PM

8 Comments:

Beyond lazy and stupid for ESPN to have announcers call games being played in the U.S. from Bristol. Blech.

Signal to Noise said...
Aug 31, 2007, 3:18:00 PM  

I've watched some of the games...I'm pretty sure that the announcer is Mark Jones and not John Saunders.



I noticed that Walton called a game and magically appeared on Sportscenter live to talk about it the same night. They do that studio announcing stuff with some of the European soccer games (Champions tourney, etc.) they occasionally show on ESPN as well.

Anonymous said...
Aug 31, 2007, 3:43:00 PM  

What??? That's like Pearl Jam doing kareoke at a concert instead. What the hell is that?

Why not just have a camera on them watching the game on TV? Kind of like in that scene from Spaceballs, where they are watching themselves.

This is getting ridiculous.

Aug 31, 2007, 3:56:00 PM  

It IS John Saunders. The FIBA games have been entertaining but now they have lost some luster just because of ESPN's shittiness.

GMoney said...
Aug 31, 2007, 4:00:00 PM  

Saunders might be working now with Walton, but the first round was Mark Jones...obviously it doesn't matter because it's awful no matter what!

Jones even made a "Mind on your money, money on your mind" reference and told Bill that they would go get haircuts together in Baltimore...lol, you can't make this crap up!

Anonymous said...
Aug 31, 2007, 4:19:00 PM  

Saunders has to stay close to home base so he can do The Sports Reporters on Sunday. No Sunday is complete without his Parting Shot, which will probably be either about hockey or racism.

Anonymous said...
Aug 31, 2007, 8:33:00 PM  

I knew they were calling the game from the studio and I can't care less. I went to a game and I saw no broadcasters from any country. I only saw a couple of people with headsets on and I doubt they were commentators. It must be a FIBA rule or something. And I find a production decision to be a reasonable cause. With all this football their showing, they could probably only afford to take one production truck and a couple of cameras out to Las Vegas.

I understand that ESPN is falling off as a network, but, really, you have to pick your battles.

Anonymous said...
Sep 1, 2007, 9:15:00 PM  

Perhaps Bill Walton has "lost his Las Vegas privileges" like Butch did with his L.A. privileges in Pulp Fiction.

Draft King said...
Sep 2, 2007, 4:24:00 PM  

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