Sports News Without Fear, Favor or Compromise
Sports News Without Fear, Favor or Compromise

Report: Fake ESPN President Tried To Get D.C. Radio Show Cancelled

Illustration for article titled Report: Fake ESPN President Tried To Get D.C. Radio Show Cancelled

Last week, we reported on how former Washington Post columnist Jason Reid's new radio show The Man Cave, which was supposed to debut last Monday on Dan Snyder-owned and ESPN-affiliated WTEM, didn't. WTEM stuck to the syndicated Mike and Mike show, and there were indications that The Man Cave was killed because Snyder, who is the worst, had found out that he was now employing Reid, a longtime critic.


According to a new report from the Washington Post, though, The Man Cave will in fact hit the air next Monday—two weeks after its originally scheduled debut. The report doesn't get to the bottom of the reason for the delay, but does include an incredibly bizarre story about somebody imitating the voice of ESPN president John Skipper and repeatedly calling WTEM, attempting to get the show cancelled:

The oddest of these events were two phone calls received by the station in the days leading up to "The Man Cave's" planned debut by a man representing himself as Skipper. In one of the calls, the imposter threatened legal trouble for the station and possible financial penalties if it bumped "Mike and Mike" for "The Man Cave," according to three people with knowledge of the calls.

While it seemed odd that someone as high-profile as Skipper would meddle with programming at a local affiliate, the imposter was apparently convincing to [Red Zebra Broadcasting chief executive Rick] Carmean, who took the calls. In addition to mimicking Skipper's accent (Skipper is a native of North Carolina), the caller also knew details about the station's inner workings and called from a number with an 860 area code — in Connecticut, where ESPN is headquartered.


The gambit was only discovered when the Washington football team's president, Bruce Allen, called Skipper after hearing he was upset, which led to the confused Skipper having some ESPN employees look into the matter. The identity of the hoaxster is still unknown, but ESPN and WTEM sorted everything out before The Man Cave's debut.

The bigger question—why The Man Cave put on hold in the first place—remains unanswered.

[Washington Post]

Photo via Kevork Djansezian/Getty

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