Many sports fans consider this time of year the “dry season.” College and pro football is over, the interminably long NBA regular season has more than 20 games yet to be played, spring training has not yet begun, and March Madness is still weeks away. Winter Olympics notwithstanding, there’s not a lot going on.
Even during the “dry season,” however, television and radio honks have to talk about something . Occasionally one will talk too much, and something like this happens.
ESPN television personality Tony Kornheiser was suspended Tuesday for remarks he made about fellow anchor Hannah Storm on his local Washington, D.C. radio show. Kornheiser, who is co-host of the popular show “Pardon the Interruption,” made his comments Friday, expressing chagrin at what Storm, 47, was wearing. Calling her outfit horrifying, the talk show host said Storm’s blouse was so tight that it looked like “sausage casing,” and that her skirt was “way too short for somebody” her age. According to Kornheiser, no woman in her late 40s (actually, he posited that Storm may be over 50) should be on the air in a “Catholic school plaid skirt.”
He either realized he had gone too far with his remarks, or he was told so (I suspect the latter), because he apologized for his remarks, both personally and on the air. ESPN decided an apology wasn’t enough, however, and suspended Kornheiser for two weeks.
ESPN is suspending Tony Kornheiser for doing what they hired him to do, what they pay him to do. He’s not a reporter per se; he is the on-air equivalent of an opinion columnist. He’s paid to offer opinions on sports-related topics, and if all his opinions were run-of-the-mill and milquetoast in tone, he’d be out of a job. Kornheiser’s job—as well as that of his PTI partner Michael Wilbon—is to be provocative.
Now, you could argue that Kornheiser’s comments were professionally discourteous, and I’d have no problem with that argument. It is bad form to publicly trash a colleague, particularly one from the same network. But otherwise, the comments he made were not out of character. Kornheiser evinces strong opinions. He criticizes people. He pokes fun at people, including himself. This is another of the reasons I don’t think he should have gotten more than a reprimand from the network.
If you’ve ever seen Tony Kornheiser, you know he’s not the slightest bit telegenic. He’s sixtyish, balding, and nebbishy, and speaks with a whiny Long Island honk of an accent. Heck, Hannah Storm could probably kick the crap out of him. Kornheiser knows this, and picking on himself is part of his shtick. Hence this quote, with which he opened his radio show on the day after HannahGate: “Im a troll, look at me. I have no right to insult what anybody looks like or what anybody wears. That, I think, should go without saying.”
He apologized on the air. He apologized to Hannah Storm. That, plus a small verbal whack on the wrist from the Mother Ship, should have been enough for a first offense. Instead, ESPN is essentially suspending Kornheiser for being himself.
Punishing someone for simply doing his job is not without precedent at the Worldwide Leader. In 2003, the network hired Rush Limbaugh to be a panelist on Sunday NFL Countdown. Limbaugh quickly became embroiled in a flap regarding on-air remarks about Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Donovan McNabb. “The media has been very desirous that a black quarterback do well, black coaches and black quarterbacks doing well,” Limbaugh said. “There is a little hope invested in McNabb, and he got a lot of credit for the performance of this team that he didnt deserve.”
ESPN summarily fired Limbaugh for racially insensitive commentary, and at the time, I thought, For what? I mean, what did ESPN expect from one of the most—if not the most—provocative celebrity in the country, one with a history of racial insensitivity? As repugnant as I find Limbaugh personally, I don’t think he should have been fired. He was doing what he was hired to do.
I am unsure associated with the specific event, but some thing had been discussed about Canada and Tony, inside the nice method, made some disrespectful opinion about Canada. Anything to your aftereffect of “It is a frozen waste land of absolutely nothing….” There is an uproar via mail, and then he apologized and stated the will say good-night Canada to demonstrate their apology….Classic Tony
Typically comes while he attempts to buzz Hockey while he understands just how number of united states in the us value it. It is section of their “Sarcastic Wit”
I do believe he is on vacation. some commentators simply take vacation trips on the summer months. dissimilar ESPN characters complete for Kornheiser and Michael Wilbon often times. dissimilar characters complete for various tv hosts and radio hosts. It in standard terms relies upon on as the man takes a vacation. It can look that tv and radio hosts simply take dissimilar vacation trips. I am wishing he doesn’t have well-being problems. I prefer hearing him. he is funny and well talked.
He does it because in Canada, PTI airs on TSN maybe not ESPN. On ESPN, just after PTI at 6 pm, SportsCenter airs. PTI has actually an extra brief portion through the 6 pm SportsCenter. Men and women in Canada don t arrive at note that last portion associated with the tv show given that it s instead of the Canadian form of SportsCentRE. Therefore Tony signals to Canadian watchers at the conclusion of the normal broadcast of PTI.
He waves it because Canada does not see PTI on ESPN, but alternatively later on within the time to their community TSN ( I’m not sure exactly what that community in fact is) therefore he provides some raise your voice for them. No he is maybe not Canadian, he is a fresh Yorker, created and raised ( extended Island and new york particularly).
“As friends of Tony and Michael, I’m honored to sit in the chair and the hope is to not be any great shame to the show,” Van Pelt said. “Also, as friends of Tony and Michael, I’m curious how it took 10 years and 30 other people before they got to my name on the list. But who’s counting?”
“It has to be at least seven or eight years now since I started doing this,” says Kornheiser.
When PTI signs off just before 6 p.m. ET, viewers in Canada do not get the additional segment with Kornheiser and Michael Wilbon that airs on the SportsCenter edition that follows because a different program airs north of the border.
PTI’s longtime associate director Bonnie Berko told Kornheiser about the SportsCenter segment not airing in Canada. So, he grabbed the flag and started waving it at the end of the show. It became a farewell to the viewers who wouldn’t see him again until the next day’s show.
With Canada Day on Sunday (July 1), it’s an opportune time to answer this burning question about one of ESPN’s most popular shows.
At the end of the interview, the panel presented Wilbon with an authentic gift: a Canadian flag thats much bigger than the one Kornheiser waves on the show.
If you see that hanging in the PTI studio in the near future, youll now know where it came from.
If youve watched Pardon The Interruption, or more commonly known as PTI over the years on TSN, theres a good chance youve seen host Tony Kornheiser wave a Canadian flag at the end of the show.
Kornhesier belts out “goodnight Canada,” while waving the flag because the Canadian audience watching on TSN doesnt get the extra segment of the show that airs on ESPNs SportsCenter in the next half hour, hence garnishing a proper send off.
Is Tony Kornheiser a Canadian?
Is Pardon the Interruption being Cancelled?