I promised myself I'd never attack two professions: Comedians and Fantasy Sports Analysts, because they're both just trying to make the world a better place and chances are they're filled with a deep pool of unquenchable misery anyway.
But I'm so tired of tuning into SiriusXM Fantasy Sports Radio and hearing obnoxious dicks. I only listen to fantasy football so this only applies to that. (But it may apply to other sports as well, I just don't listen to them.)
Whatever absentee owner or clown prince is managing that station needs to take a long, hard look at the people on the air. I know we're kind of in the adolescent years of Fantasy Sports programming (both in TV and Radio) but there should be some semblance of professionalism. And how about a tangible platform? How about a through line? What if, at every Home Depot, the shade of orange was left to the manager of that branch? People want predictability, they want to be informed and most of all they want to be entertained.
And Sirius XM Fantasy Radio is FAILING at that.
Here's my plan to get it back on track:
#1: I CANNOT STRESS THIS ENOUGH: Go back and review game tape to see who treats callers like dicks. That's it. Don't say "starting today, everyone has to be nice." No. Go review the last six months of tape. If anyone was a douchebag to ANY caller, they're gone. Fired. I don't care if they're a "Hall of Famer" Fantasy player (I've been playing for 20 years and believe me- NOBODY GIVES A SHIT ABOUT THAT DESIGNATION).
People who are paid to comment on fantasy sports are the luckiest people on the face of the earth. It is the greatest pretend-job-that-shouldn't-exist-imaginable. Guys are acting like they were born into this and they can't be removed. Set some of these guys on fire and let it serve as a warning to everyone.
You cannot say this to a caller "NO! DON'T GIVE ME YOUR WHOLE TEAM JUST ASK ME YOUR QUESTION!" If you say that, if you said that, ever: you're out.
#2: Fire anyone who acts like they know it all. It's sophomoric posturing bullshit and it's fucking exhausting. "Trust me: BLAH BLAH BLAH." "Are you insane? You shouldn't have drafted that guy!" Ugh. You don't know shit, dude. Truly. If you knew which players were going to pop or bust you'd be independently wealthy and living on an island with a cloned replica of Angelina Jolie. But you don't. YOU DON'T KNOW. So stop pretending like you do. There's this one guy who postures constantly. He belittles other analysts. He raises his voice and actually yells over people. And I've heard him on like three or four different shows. I don't want to make an ad hominem attack but this guy is the second worst person on the channel. He's insufferable.
#3: Get dialogue coaches for people or get rid of them. I'm so tired of hearing guys pontificate about fantasy sports without knowing that the dipthong th- isn't pronounced D-. "You gotta get dat guy off da roster." OH MY GOD. READ A BOOK. HOLY SHIT.
#4: More "statistician" types, less "bookie" types. Basically, hire smarter people. I get that there's a balance. For example, I listen to Chris Harris' podcast on ESPN and while I love much of his insight he can tend to suck the life out of the room a bit. That's not a knock on him. He's a stud, he's just not naturally funny. Fantasy Sports, in it's infancy, has tended to attract lost of bookie-type d-bags. Fast talkers. Scumbags. Guys that think they're more clever than other people. Guys that have likely fractured betting laws since they were old enough to speak. I know these guys are out there, but I don't want to pay to listen to them.
Fantasy Sports, in it's infancy, has tended to attract lost of bookie-type d-bags.
#5: Away with the mush mouths. If a guy can't speak, like when you listen to him you wince imagining how much spittle just hit the mic, then he's gone. It's seriously gross. Have a baseline for crying out loud. The most irritating guy on the entire channel is guilty of all of the last FIVE things. Any one of them would be enough SHOULD BY NOW HAVE BEEN MORE THAN ENOUGH to say asta la vista to him. Come the fuck on!
#6: No more multi-sport experts. I bust my ass to really know everything there is to know about fantasy football and I'm telling you, if you're a guy who think he knows football, baseball and every other sport I'm telling you that I KNOW MORE THAN YOU DO, so shut up. One guy the other day was in the middle of a football show and started referencing fantasy AUTO RACING. Are you fucking kidding me? Stay on point, imbecile! I don't give a rats ass about that. One person. One sport. These guys who spend all day rattling off facts about seventeen different fantasy sports are dinosaurs. That's where fantasy used to be, not where it is now.
#7: No more ex-NFL-player experts. No more of this. I'm not attacking one single guy but these guys typically don't know dick about fantasy football and they come in with a bias that is more of a disservice than a help. You have your exceptions: like Akbar Gbaja-Biamila on the NFL Network who has damn good fantasy instincts, but most of these guys are completely useless. They come into it with a bias that makes them skew wrong with their analysis. And it ends up making me not like them as people. There's one former player who I used to love (who I had on two championship teams) that does fantasy now and every time he opens his mouth he's wrong. HE'S WRONG. It makes me shake my head. He used to mean everything to me. Sniff sniff. A recent example is the hiring of Ross Tucker. Now, I really like Ross Tucker. I listen to him on SiriusXM NFL radio and I think he's really good. Likeable, smart, etc. But he admits that he STARTED PLAYING FANTASY FOOTBALL LIKE A YEAR AGO. Are you fucking high? I've been playing fantasy football for 20 years. I could shit out more fantasy information before brunch than Ross Tucker has ever been aware of. But he's the new host of a show? Seriously? Again, for football, he's aces. For fantasy, it's an insult. Ross Tucker went to the circus a few times so now he's a tightrope walker? No way, man.
#8: Knock it off with the inside jokes. I realize there's a certain percentage of your listener base that has absolutely no life and cares about your matchup with another self-important fantasy analyst. But I don't give a RAT'S ASS about that. There is nothing, I mean NOTHING less interesting than "smack talk" between two guys who are paid to basically guess as well as they can. Ugh! It's insufferable. The other morning I was on my way home from dropping my kids off to school and looking for a little fantasy talk and I had to sit in traffic listening to two donkeys braying about a third donkey. I don't know who you're talking about you fucking zero. It's not funny to anyone but you. UGH. Fire them. Please. Please. Please. Call me in. I'll do it for you.
The other morning I was on my way home from dropping my kids off to school and looking for a little fantasy talk and I had to sit in traffic listening to two donkeys braying about a third donkey.
#9: Promote/favor intelligence over seniority. I have the sense that there's a community of old-timers there who have been around from the beginning and they seem to hold sway over the channel. Likewise, certain fantasy organizations like Rotowire or Rotoexperts (for example, not picking on them I just hear the names more frequently) or more high profile sites like that seem to somehow control key programming blocks on the station. This has to end. Just because someone has been doing it for a while doesn't mean they should keep doing it. I've heard some real talented newcomers on the station in shitty time slots that kick the living shit out of the "main" or high profile fantasy football guys.
#10: Take a long look at how you treat women, and how they ask to be treated. This should have probably been my first point. To the current analysts. It's no different when a woman calls in for fantasy advice than when a man calls in. STOP SEXUALLY HARASSING EVERY WOMAN THAT CALLS IN. They don't need to be called sweetie and baby and darlin by you, you fucking tools. they just want to know which WR3 to start. It's like some of you are stuck in the goddamn 1950's. Go find a real, human woman to hang out with. Oh you can't? Why not? Because you have to brush up on your fantasy auto racing? GET A FUCKING LIFE. And to the women currently on the station: DEMAND BETTER. For christ sake. You have to be a playmate or a porn star to get your own show? What the fuck is that? Pilar Lastra knows her shit. You need to attract viewers by saying she's a playmate? Fine. I'm not a child. I get how men are. But does every segment name have to be sexual? The fantasy three-way? ARE YOU FUCKING INSANE? It's disgusting. Truly insulting and disgusting. I'll listen to Pilar Lastra do her favorite "Johnson" segment all day as long as Tony Cincotta (for example, not picking on him, just picking a dude) does it. MMMMM. Here's Tony's favorite Johnson. Ooooooooh. Bullshit. A man wouldn't stand for that shit. A woman shouldn't have to either. No offense to the playmate and porn star they have on their current roster but there are a FUCKTON of women out there that KICK ASS at fantasy football and just need a shot to be heard. And they won't drool and act like idiots when other women call in to see what defense to stream.
STOP SEXUALLY HARASSING EVERY WOMAN THAT CALLS IN. They don't need to be called sweetie and baby and darlin by you, you fucking tools.
I could give you a list of ten women off the top of my head that would ba amazing with their own show.
It's a new day in the world of fantasy football. Someone needs to pull this station out of the dark ages and get with the program. The world of fantasy football is alive with new voices that are sharp and funny and full of great insight.
Keep your good hosts in place: guys like Nando Di Fino. I've never heard him be anything but polite and nice and genuine to everyone. Similarly, a guy like Nathan Zegura might drive you crazy with his voice and his affect, but he's a master of rolling calls. He treats every caller with respect.
If you're one of the good hosts on Sirius XM fantasy Sports radio, you should have nothing to worry about. You've worked hard, you're a decent person and you deserve to get paid for what might be the greatest gig in the history of civilization. But if you're one of the many Dbags polluting the airwaves with your shit, let this be a notice to you. You're not flying under the radar.
How do you know if you're a good host or not? Simple. If you read through this whole article and the first thought you have is to defend yourself or attack me or mock me for it?
...You're not one of the good ones.