What can only be described as one of sports talk radio's most epic meltdowns happened two days ago. But since it happened on satellite radio, nobody knows a got-dang thing about it.
Thursday afternoon, Chris Russo,
better only known as the "Mad Dog," blew up at his staff in the middle of his afternoon program on Sirius XM. (antitrust laws? What antitrust laws?) He called his entire staff "horseshit," and possibly gave program director Steve Torre the axe live on air.
From a producer at the Mad Dog Radio channel:
He said the channel sucks, he hired the wrong guys, the
staff is too young, hosts stink. He then fired his program director
on the air. Not sure if that part is real. The rest of the stuff
He went so far as to bring evening host Andy Gresh on his show, and ripped him apart.
Dog is reported ticked off at his numbers: he said his station is ranked outside of the top 100 channels (of note: Mike Francesa's ratings are holding steady on WFAN), and that he'll meet with CEO Mel Karmazin to discuss changes.
Now. If you'll remember the hubbub when Russo signed his 5-year, $15 million deal with Sirius XM, one of the main selling points was that Russo would be in charge of hiring his own staff. So if we take his comments at face value, that if the problem is due to his co-workers, then there's no one to blame but Russo himself.
A Sirius XM rep said the company has control over the content of their channels, and that they won't comment on personnel decisions. But that doesn't explain why we don't have more info on this. This stuff is digital, people: how hard can it be for someone to grab the audio, or at least post a transcript? This coverup must go deeper than the LeBron dunk footage. If you've got more info, you know where to send it.
UPDATE: Yup, the firing was real. And then there's this:
I put together a staff that is incompetent. I have put together a group of young talk-show hosts who I thought were going to be little Mad Dogs, and they're little Bow-Wows instead. We don't have any talent. We are the Washington Nationals. Check that: we are the Washington Generals."
H/T: [The Chris Russo]
SECOND UPDATE: Audio of Dog mercilessly running down each staff member in turn. Even the goddamn interns.(
The audio file now appears to be broken. Hopefully, someone else has it. Working again!)