1. TV people like to overthink everything and go out of their way to appear as if they’re smarter than everyone else.
Hopefully this won’t be the case with Turner Sports executives who have the easiest possible decision to make soon.
With the legendary voice of the NBA, Marv Albert, officially announcing on Monday that he will retire after calling the Eastern Conference this season, Turner Sports will hire a new lead play-by-play voice.
The network has three excellent in-house options with Kevin Harlan, Ian Eagle and Brian Anderson.
However, there really is only one choice: Harlan.
The job absolutely, positively, without a doubt should be his. He deserves it based on quality, longevity and popularity. Eagle and Anderson are younger than Harlan and will get their chance to have the No. 1 job at some point. But for now, the gig should be Harlan’s.
He has been calling NBA games since 1982 when, at the age of 22, he got the job as the Kansas City Kings TV and radio play-by-play man. He then called Timberwolves games from '89 to '98. He joined Turner in '96 and for the past 25 years has entertained fans with his unique style and iconic pipes while always putting out a quality broadcast.
In addition to having “the voice,” Harlan is meticulous at play-by-play and brings a certain excitement to each broadcast. When he’s behind the mic, every game he calls—whether it’s a random regular-season game in November or a playoff game in June—has a big-game feel.
Do the right thing, Turner Sports. Don’t screw this up. For the network’s sake and fans’ sake, choose Kevin Harlan as the lead voice of your network.
Here’s all the proof you need.
2. Shohei Ohtani hit a pitch that was near eye-level for a homer Monday night.
The blast impressed J.J. Watt, who made a valid point.
3. This tweet has been all over this morning. I don't really want to get into the debate about whether or not a batter should swing on a 3–0 count during a blowout. I just want to point out that while the Twins' broadcasters complained, they were hardly seething.
4. One, this is awesome. Two, no one should be surprised that eating a delicious Twix bar would lead to good things.
5. Lakers guard Dennis Schröder is canceling Kyrie Irving. The two got into an on-court altercation last month and now Schröder says he's done wearing Kyrie's signature sneakers.
6. The latest episode of the Sports Illustrated Media Podcast features two guests.
First up is Rich Eisen of NFL Network and Peacock. Eisen talks about navigating his post-ESPN career, tells stories about his old SportsCenter days and legendary anchors and shares his thoughts on Kenny Mayne's leaving ESPN. In addition, Eisen breaks down his responsibilities hosting the NFL draft and what it's like hosting NFL Network's three-hour schedule release show. He also discusses the Aaron Rodgers situation, streaming-only NFL games, the reunion of "Bennifer" and much more.
Following Eisen, Rolling Stone chief TV critic Alan Sepinwall joins the podcast to talk about his newly released list of the "100 Greatest Sitcoms of All Time." Sepinwall explains the rankings of such shows as Curb Your Enthusiasm, Friends, The Simpsons, Schitt's Creek, The Big Bang Theory and much more.
You can also watch the podcast on YouTube.
7. RANDOM VIDEO OF THE DAY: There's been some news the past couple of days about UFOs, aliens and flying saucers. It all reminded me of a great Sopranos scene and line from Ralphie to Paulie.
Be sure to catch up on past editions of Traina Thoughts and check out the Sports Illustrated Media Podcast hosted by Jimmy Traina on Apple, Spotify or Stitcher. You can also follow Jimmy on Twitter and Instagram.