Gregg Giannotti brought more than a peashooter.
The WFAN morning show host blasted Michael Kay on Thursday, lambasting the ESPN Radio New York afternoon host for his controversial comments about trying to get a colleague fired and subsequent lame explanation that it was all “performative.”
Radio War? Or is Gio just being performative? pic.twitter.com/uk7QGM086L
— Brandon Contes (@BrandonContes) January 12, 2023
The highlights, via Awful Announcing:
[Co-hosts Don La Greca and Peter Rosenberg] don’t have to sit there and bootlick him any longer. He’s going to retire. It doesn’t matter if you kiss his ass or not, it’s not gonna be the difference in you getting that job when he leaves. Just stop it. Just stop kissing his ass. He was wrong. Call him out for it. He was absolutely wrong. It’s not performance art. You were pissed off.
Instead, I’ve got to believe it’s performance art? Are you freaking kidding me? If it is performance art, why are you pulling back the curtain? Does the magician show you where he keeps the rabbit before he pulls it out of the hat? If you’re such a great performer, then continue your bit. But then you pulled back the curtain to tell everybody about it cause you weren’t man enough to step up and say you were wrong.
And for someone to be in the business as long as he has, to pull that kind of lie and bullcrap was embarrassing. Absolutely embarrassing. I sit here and I bust everybody’s balls, I’ll point out mistakes, but if I ever — ever — go and say on the air, “This guy needs to be fired,” you have permission to punch me right in the face. Because that is a ridiculous, ridiculous abuse of power.
Giannotti said it better than we did the other day. Kay threatened to try to get ESPN morning show producer Ray Santiago fired after Santiago made fun of Kay’s bad ratings. And he did so in a vengeful rant. There was absolutely zero tell it was anything more than genuine and vindictive rage. And for Kay to turn around and admit he was upset, but then claim everything else was just a put-on and people would have to be dumb to not understand that, was disgraceful. La Greca and Rosenberg going along with it was not much better either.
The expectation is Kay will retire from radio at some point this year. His deal is up in the fall, he’s getting demolished by Craig Carton and Evan Roberts and his priority is clearly calling the Yankees for YES Network. He had a good 20-year run and got ESPN in the conversation with WFAN, although actual victories were limited. But it feels like his program could really start to spiral now. Because this was an ugly incident all around.
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James Kratch can be reached at [email protected]