Media Talk: Jay Cutler or Tony Romo? Katie Nolan's future? Will NBA set record?

0:57 | Tech & Media
Media Circus: Growing impact of ESPN layoffs

SI.com's Richard Deitsch and Jimmy Traina will periodically discuss a variety of media topics over Slack and then share their conversation with you. The two talked about Jay Cutler vs. Tony Romo, Katie Nolan's TV future, NBA ratings and more on Monday afternoon. Take a look and the unedited transcript.

Traina [4:31 PM] 

Hello, Richard.

Deitsch [4:31 PM] 

Hello, Jimmy.

Traina [4:32 PM] 

Any topics you'd like to discuss?

I have several.

Deitsch [4:32 PM] 

Happy to talk about whatever you want, James.

Traina [4:33 PM] 

Let me start with something ridiculous.

Is it wrong that I had no idea Jerome Bettis even worked at ESPN?

Deitsch [4:33 PM] 

Not at all. You'd have to be a dedicated hardcore NFL watcher of ESPN to know. I imagine some people would say Bettis worked at NBC, his previous employer.

Traina [4:34 PM

Yeah, I remember that. Not good.

Why do you think CBS swapped Bart Scott for Nate Burleson?

Deitsch [4:36 PM] 

That's a good question. I'm not sure. Scott had been with CBS since 2012 and they seemed to like him on the CBS Sports Network show before the bump up. Burleson is someone who has been on the radar of larger networks but I'm honestly not sure why CBS made the move. I'll eventually ask someone on the record and I'll be curious what they say. I will say I think Simms is going to better in the studio for viewers than the booth. 

Traina [4:37 PM] 

James Brown, Phil Simms, Boomer Esiason ad Nate Burleson does not exactly scream, MUST-SEE TV to me.

Deitsch [4:38 PM] 

It's a weird mix, at least on face.

Traina [4:40 PM] 

If you were a betting person, who do you think will end up in better standing with viewers by the time the season is over: Romo or Cutler?

Deitsch [4:41 PM] 

Romo. I think Cutler is set up to succeed faster given he has an analyst with him (Charles Davis) and the spotlight isn't as hot on the No. 2 team. But by the end of the season, given all his reps and he'll be coming off the AFC Championship game, I think Romo is the answer. He's also more popular as an athletic figure. Cutler didn't exactly endear himself to people via the media.

By the way, this Slack idea of your is really going to light up the page views!

Traina [4:43 PM] 

Did you see Katie Nolan's tweet about the fact that she misses working? Do you have any scoop on what's going on with her and Fox?

Deitsch [4:49 PM] 

I imagine she's letting her bosses know that it's time for them to find a vehicle for her.

Traina [4:49 PM] 

Whoa, wait.

You don't think they have a vehicle in place already? How long is she supposed to sit around and do nothing?

Deitsch [4:51 PM] 

The show was canceled in February. It's May. I hope for her and her crew, they have something coming soon.

Big delays for the LIRR. Good luck to you getting home, by the way.

Traina [4:51 PM] 

Pretty bizarre that they have a network that nobody watches and can't just put her on there somewhere for 30 minutes a day.

Deitsch [4:52 PM] 

She's talented. Up to management to figure something out. That's what they get paid to do.

Traina [4:53 PM] 

Did you watch any of the Cubs-Yankees game Sunday night?

Deitsch [4:53 PM] 

No.

Traina [4:53 PM] 

You're lucky. Their telecast is a train wreck. Please look into this..

Deitsch [4:54 PM] 

Why was it a train wreck?

Traina​ [4:54 PM] 

They basically cover everything but the game.

Features with Jessica Mendoza in the middle of the game, Buster Olney coming on to give a full report on Matt Harvey - during a CUBS-YANKEES game, completely useless interviews with both managers, the stupid pitch box and dot after every pitch.

Constant cuts to the booth so we can see Schulman, Mendoza and Boone.

Everything was covered except the actual game taking place on the field.

Deitsch​ [4:56 PM] 

You are like the new Phil Mushnick.

Traina​ [4:56 PM] 

Good response. Very educational.

Deitsch​ [4:56 PM] 

Thanks.

Traina​ [4:57 PM] 

There has never been one in-game interview with a manager that has ever been newsworthy, yet ESPN and Fox continue to do them. Makes no sense.

Deitsch​ [4:57 PM] 

I actually like it in basketball because I find the performance art of Steve Kerr/Gregg Popovich etc... fun.

Traina [4:58 PM] 

I agree with that, but they are completely useless in MLB.

Deitsch​ [4:58 PM] 

Joe Maddon is a good interview for the in-games but in general, MLB is closer to the NFL than the NBA.

Traina​ [4:59 PM] 

He still doesn't say anything interesting.

Are there any topics that are on your mind?

Deitsch​ [4:59 PM] 

No. I need some coffee. I feel like this is the perfect place to end.

Traina [5:00 PM] 

One last thing...

Why on earth did ESPN make Sara Walsh come all the way to Bristol before telling her she was part of the cuts?

Deitsch​ [5:02 PM] 

Whether intentional or unintentional, it was pretty disgusting to learn about. Traveling with infants is a logistical nightmare and she had to fly from Florida to Connecticut. That was a disgrace.

Traina​ [5:03 PM] 

Do you think it could've been a miscommunication or something? Hard to imagine that was intentional.

Deitsch​ [5:04 PM] 

I'd like to think it wasn't done to intentional screw her because that would be serious cruel but that can't happen to someone just coming off maternity leave.

Traina​ [5:04 PM] 

Brutal.

Let's end on a positive note: 

ESPN is getting strong ratings for the NBA playoffs even though the games have not been good. Would a Warriors-Cavaliers final set an NBA rating record?

Given it goes 6 or 7 games.

Deitsch​ [5:08 PM] 

No. Jordan's last championship in 1998 averaged nearly 30 million viewers for the series. But like last year, this series can definitely average around 20 million, which would be the best since those days.

Traina​ [5:09 PM] 

Maybe it won't set a record because ESPN is too liberal.

Deitsch​ [5:09 PM] 

Ha. That's funny.

Traina [5:10 PM] 

Thank you. Goodbye.

Deitsch​ [5:11 PM] 

Be well

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