RADIO GA-GA

Robin Brownlee
June 13 2009 10:01PM

old_time_people_around_radio I enjoy sports talk radio and I'm hardly an impartial party in this town, being a newspaperman who is trying to learn the art of saying something people want to hear after spending most of my career trying to write something they wanted to read.

I began tinkering with the wireless more than 25 years ago while I was in the weekly newspaper biz, then did more while covering the Kamloops Blazers of the WHL in the late-1980s.

Here in Edmonton, my job as beat man covering the Oilers for The Journal and The Sun until 2007 allowed me to occasionally wander into the booth with 630 CHED here and on the road.

I got a break when Bob Stauffer enlisted me as a co-host for his popular drive time show, Total Sports, on TEAM 1260. Later, when the Oilers hired Stauffer to ride shotgun for Rod Phillips with 630 CHED, Jason Gregor was good enough to retain me for Just A Game when it moved to take Stauffer's slot. For that, I'm grateful.

With that little bit of background out of the way, I read with some interest a piece in the Journal today by columnist Dan Barnes outlining TEAM 1260's challenge to attract listeners against the juggernaut that is 630 CHED, the voice of the Oilers and Eskimos.

It hatched an idea. If it's goofy, I'm sure you'll let me know.

OUTSIDE THE BOX

Like I said, I'm not impartial on this. I think it's to the benefit of listeners in town to have two radio stations with strong rosters of sports programming. That's why I'd like to see TEAM 1260 succeed. They provide a balance to the rights holders. Another voice.

That's why I'd like to see their numbers -- more on this below -- get better. I'd like to see them prosper. And, besides, they let me try to impart what I know over the airwaves without scolding me for being, as of now, only OK at it.

Likewise, I happen to think Stauffer played a significant part in providing that balance. Stauffer was the critical voice, the hammer on the TEAM 1260 roster, before, as I put it in an item leading into this season, he "took the hush money" and joined the Oilers.

When I add the two together, I wonder if sports talk radio listeners in this town wouldn't be best served if Stauffer wore two different hats with two different stations.

BY THE NUMBERS

For those who care about the actual numbers, here they are. All are for the demographic of males aged 25-54 over the last six survey books, which date back to January 2008.

TEAM 1260

Morning Drive 6 to 10 a.m. (14 Stations)

(Jan-Feb 2008) 6.4 share (6th) (Mar-Apr 2008 ) 4.2 share (9th) (Jun-Jul 2008 ) 5.5 share (9th) (Sep-Oct 2008) 4.5 share (9th) (Jan-Feb 2009) 3.2 share (10th) (Mar-Apr 2009 ) 1.9 share (10th)

Bottom Line: Yes, the morning show, More On Sports, has taken a dip, but in fairness, the most competitive part of the programming day is the morning the slot. Astral needs to regain a foothold.

Mid-Day 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. (14 Stations)

(Jan-Feb 08) 3.4 share (10th) (Mar-Apr 08) 2.9 share (11th) (Jun-Jul 08) 3.0 share (11th) (Sep-Oct 08) 2.8 share (10th) (Jan-Feb 09) 1.8 share (12th) (Mar-Apr 09) 1.5 share (12th)

Bottom Line: Jim Rome had steady numbers through 2008, but TEAM 1260 switched from ESPN to Fox Radio and the numbers took a hit. Hmmm.

Afternoon Drive 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. (14 Stations)

(Jan-Feb 08) 8.0 share (4th) CHED 3rd with an 11.0 (Mar-Apr 08) 9.7 share (3rd) CHED tied for 8th with 5.2 (Jun-Jul 08) 7.8 share (4th) CHED 6th with 6.5 (Last Stauffer book) (Sep-Oct 08) 5.6 share (8th) CHED 3rd with 9.0 (Jan-Feb 09) 6.3 share (7th) CHED 5th with 7.7 (Mar-Apr 09) 4.2 share (9th) CHED 8th with a 5.7

Bottom Line: Generally speaking for sports stations throughout North America, the afternoon drive shows pull in the best numbers. This is the make or break slot Gregor took over from Stauffer.

Evenings 7 p.m. to midnight (14 Stations)

(Jan-Feb 08)-0.4 share (14th) CHED 1st with an 18.2 (Mar-Apr 08 ) 3.1 share (9th) CHED 1st with a 16.3 (Jun-Jul 08) 5.6 share (6th) CHED 2nd with 10.1 (Last Gregor book) (Sep-Oct 08) 3.1 share (11th) CHED 1st with 13.5 (Jan-Feb 09) 0.7 share (13th) CHED 1st with 21.4 (Mar-Apr 09)-2.5 (12th) CHED first with 13.1

Bottom Line: Inside Sports with Dan Tencer and anything to do with the Oilers rule the slot during the season. TEAM 1260 hasn't even contested this slot since Gregor moved to afternoons.

NO COMPETITION?

The quote from the Barnes piece that grabs me comes from CHED general manager Doug Rutherford.

"I don't really see (The Team) as competition. An all-sports radio station will talk to a specific audience, although small. What we try and do with CHED is talk to a more mainstream audience. All-sports is a niche format."

Maybe I'm taking Rutherford a bit too literally, but if TEAM 1260 isn't really competition, does that leave the door open for Stauffer to keep his night job alongside Phillips but cross town and fill a 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. slot on the Astral roster and form a solid one-two punch with Gregor during the week?

Let's not forget, Stauffer's an employee of the Oilers, not 630 CHED. Might team owner Daryl Katz, who already does business with Astral (TEAM 1260) with broadcasts of the Edmonton Oil Kings, be interested in expanding the brand by providing his product on two stations?

A SHOT IN THE ARM

Depending on where you sit with Stauffer -- love him or hate him with little room for indifference in between -- having him rev up the bombast that just won't fly on 630 CHED game nights back on TEAM 1260 is either a stroke of brilliance or just me having a stroke.

While I question Barnes' homer reference when it comes to Stauffer and Phillips -- I think they're more critical of the Oilers than any other team tandem of rights holders I can think of -- there's no question Bombastic Bob hasn't been able to let it all hang out since becoming an employee of the Oilers like he did when the saliva was flying at 1260.

Would the brass at Astral go for this? Would management at 630 CHED? What about the Oilers? Most important, what about the listeners, the people who tune in and pay the freight? Or not.

It sounds like a shot in the arm for sports fans to me.

-- Listen to Robin Brownlee every Thursday from 4 to 6 p.m. on Just A Game with Jason Gregor on TEAM 1260.

Aceb4a1816f5fa09879a023b07d1a9b4
A sports writer since 1983, including stints at The Edmonton Journal and The Sun 1989-2007, I happily co-host the Jason Gregor Show on TSN 1260 twice a week and write when so inclined. Have the best damn lawn on the internet. Most important, I am Sam's dad. Follow me on Twitter at Robin_Brownlee. Or don't.
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#51 freeze
June 14 2009, 10:54AM
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Do Jason and Will build the show themselves? Meaning, do they come up with the different segments/interviews and whatnot? Their show is way above anything else I've heard. Absolutely fantastic interviews and a great variety of opinions/voices. Perhaps the rest of the TEAM should take some notes. Hockey coaching 101 is a favourite, especially when guys like Hitchcock are spilling the beans.

The one thing that makes me turn the TEAM off is the commercials. Most of them are very lame and they grate on my nerves since they are repeated far too often. I avoid radio in general because of the weak production on the ads. I don't expect much to change there but that is the reason why this fan switches to the ipod.

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#52 Tyler
June 14 2009, 11:12AM
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Of course, if Stauffer's going to do the 1-3 PM show, a guy starts to wonder why he can't do the 3-6 PM show, with Gregor as his replacement. I was a regular listener of Stauffer but Gregor doesn't do it for me. He's a lightweight in terms of analysis and doesn't break a ton of stuff. Tencer's got the same problem - he's out of his depth on a lot of stuff, although he sure sounds nice as he blows hot air.

Guys like Stauffer or Mike Wilner, who does the Jays post-game in Toronto, are fantastic. Shame that there aren't more of them. The TEAM's real problem is that it needs to find some more talent. I don't know that Stauffer would be any more critical of the Oilers if he was back on the TEAM - he still knows who signs his paycheques at the other place and that's going to affect what he says.

I agree that better talent is needed; Stauffer's probably not the right guy.

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#53 freeze
June 14 2009, 11:16AM
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Do Jason and Will build the show themselves? Meaning, do they come up with the different segments/interviews and whatnot? Their show is way above anything else I’ve heard. Absolutely fantastic interviews and a great variety of opinions/voices. Perhaps the rest of the TEAM should take some notes. Hockey coaching 101 is a favourite, especially when guys like Hitchc*ck are spilling the beans.

The one thing that makes me turn the TEAM off is the commercials. Most of them are very lame and they grate on my nerves since they are repeated far too often. I avoid radio in general because of the weak production on the ads. I don’t expect much to change there but that is the reason why this fan switches to the ipod.

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#54 Tyler
June 14 2009, 11:17AM
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I should add, the poster above me is right - Jason does some very good interviews.

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#55 esa tikkanen
June 14 2009, 11:21AM
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Thanks for this great topic Robin.

I would like to say first that I am shocked that the ratings went down that much when Stauffer left. I think Gregor's show is excellent and just as good. I loved Bob's show but I like Jason's just as much. Very surprised. Bryan Hall should be embarassed for the pathetic quality of programming he puts on, and anybody who listens to that 75 year old read reuters sports highlights out loud should be ashamed for listening. The team should worry when Hall retires that they may have some real competition in the drive home slot..

Secondly, I am not surprised about Jake. That show way offside was terrible. I work from home first thing in the morning then drive my kids to school. After that I had the misfortune of listening to Jake in the morning. Dude, nobody cares about Nick the American or Soccer steve. Baseball, NBA, local amateur sports are of little interest to most Edmontonians. Not to mention Jake had very little analysis or thoughts about the local teams. He liked them and hated Calgary. That is fine, but not too articulate or thought provoking. MIke Richards is intelligent, articulate, and current.

Thirdly Robin I highly doubt Ched would let Bob come do a show from 1-3. Would the Sun have let you write a Sunday column for the Journal in the hockey season, or cover the Eskimos during the summer?

Fouth, I love the team so would like to make the following suggestions if any executives are reading: - Start by making the morning show as good as the afternoon show. The two most important radio shows by far are the drive in and drive home. The morning show does not compete with another sports show in the morning, more with news, and the funny FM guys. I would suggest moving Cory Graham to the mornings and add Guy Flaming or Morley Scott to be his cohost. - The evening show to compete with Dan Tencer is the next challenge. How about John Sexsmith with a different guest each night like Gregor does?

I understand the costs must be high to have a show, thus just paying a roylaty to espn sports and all that. How about to save costs running replays of Gregor's show from 1-3? Maybe that sounds stupid but if I missed it one day I wish I had listened, and would listen from work from 1-3 if I had the chance. Or if the morning show and new evening show is good, have replays of the best of the morning, drivehome and evening shows put in from 1-3. That may help alleviate the cost of adding a new show in the evening.

- I like Gregor's show better when he has a guest like Barnes or Brownlee. Maybe they could each come on twice a week?

- I think there is a bigger market for the Eskimos than The Team thinks there is. Maybe Fridays could be devoted to the Eskimos with the guest the Eskimos beat writer like they did last year with Huntington. Or a retired, articulate alumni like Blake Dermott or Sean Fleming.

- I think one area no sports host has picked up on that would be a wealth of interest are the bloggers. How about having Jonathan Willis, Lowetide, Tyler, etc get one hour a month to be a guest with Gregor or whoever hosts the morning or evening show?(Wednesdays could be blogger day, with Willis one wednesday, Lowetide one wednesday, etc) Or for the Esks get Diesel or Opus from Esksfans.com?

I know Gregor reads this thread so hope there are some ideas here for you. I love your show and Robin you are an excellent guest. I think you definitely have some more to give in the local media and would be an avid listener whenever you got on the air. FWIW if you dropped the helicopter guy, I doubt you would drop any ratings..

I am shocked that anyone listens to Bryan Hall. Ched should be embarassed for letting him stay on the air that long, and if any informed sports fan listens other than during the commercials at 1260 then you should be ashamed of yourself. it is 90 minutes of Hallsy reading reuters sports clips, talking about Tony Romas and Christiansen developments, and news traffice weather together.

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#56 RossCreek
June 14 2009, 11:23AM
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No disrespect to Squeaky Brad, but he too could prob go. Him and Jake seem a little too much like fanboys, no? Maybe they could make him part of the 1-3 show. They definately under utilize Corey Graham and AJ Jakubic. Corey seemed to be on his way to big things under Bob, but has suffered since. He should of been put in the slot between Rome and Gregor right from the start. Maybe he slides in with Bryn. Still no word on whats happening?

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#57 RossCreek
June 14 2009, 11:35AM
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I'd keep the traffic chopper and the weather updates, but if I want a news update every hour, I'll turn somewhere else. The Fan960 doesn't do news, but they have the chopper and weather. They also have humorous skits (a la Steve Armitage spoofs, Flames of our Lives, Sylvan Lake drama spoofs, etc). Not to mention great guests. My only complaints of the fan - they seem less interactive with the fans and they replay a lot in their 9 o clock hour. I hear a lot of stations being turned when Wilkie comes on too. More Mark Spector, more Brownlee, more Kelly Hrudy, more Scott Taylor, more Craig Simpson, more Darren Dreger. More insiders and reporters. Steven Brunt. Eric Duhatschek.

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#58 freeze
June 14 2009, 11:54AM
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@ RossCreek: I agree with you on the traffic comment. Double D rules!!

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#59 Hoos
June 14 2009, 12:55PM
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The one comment I would disagree with is that people don't care about Amateur sports in Edmonton. Surely we don't need to be like Texas and devote an entire four hours to High School football, but it comes down to how knowledgeable an interesting the voice presenting the information is.

Did anybody know that Huntington knew absolutely everything about Horse Racing? The only thing I care about horse racing surrounds hot girls in sun dresses and big hats, but I always found myself listening to an educated and informed person in this area. That's why ESPN radio worked and Fox doesn't. If I have to hear more about how hot Alba vs. Megan Fox is, or how crappy Jimmy Fallon is, I'll puke.

BUT, Edmonton has a pretty good sports scene. Try a show devoted to U of A athletics. OR, a CHL show. OR something, anything.

I loved Stauffer's show and would be the first to listen if he came back, but without finding the new up and coming guys, this station will never be a good alternative. Where did Gregor come from? Where did Huntington?

I only now listen between 3-6pm, but would listen to anything local. I was the one guy who listened to Cracker Cats show.

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#60 David S
June 14 2009, 01:14PM
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Let's not all go off the deep end and start dissin' Alba vs. Megan Fox hot-offs. Jeanshorts will have an aneurysm.

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#61 Robin Brownlee
June 14 2009, 01:15PM
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Tyler wrote:

Of course, if Stauffer’s going to do the 1-3 PM show, a guy starts to wonder why he can’t do the 3-6 PM show, with Gregor as his replacement. I was a regular listener of Stauffer but Gregor doesn’t do it for me. He’s a lightweight in terms of analysis and doesn’t break a ton of stuff. Tencer’s got the same problem - he’s out of his depth on a lot of stuff, although he sure sounds nice as he blows hot air. Guys like Stauffer or Mike Wilner, who does the Jays post-game in Toronto, are fantastic. Shame that there aren’t more of them. The TEAM’s real problem is that it needs to find some more talent. I don’t know that Stauffer would be any more critical of the Oilers if he was back on the TEAM - he still knows who signs his paycheques at the other place and that’s going to affect what he says. I agree that better talent is needed; Stauffer’s probably not the right guy.

I don't agree Gregor's a lightweight. His approach is different than Stauffer's, but that doesn't mean he doesn't know his stuff. You're mistaken on the aspect of breaking stories, as well. There's been several times -- the Pat Quinn and Renney announcement being the latest example -- when he's had the story first.

Strategically speaking, I think having Stauffer go 1-3 as a lead-in to Gregor makes sense. Besides, even if TEAM 1260 wanted Stauffer in the drivetime slot, that bumps up against CHED's pre-game coverage. The radio guys are always at the rink at 5 p.m.

Hoos wrote:

Thirdly Robin I highly doubt Ched would let Bob come do a show from 1-3. Would the Sun have let you write a Sunday column for the Journal in the hockey season, or cover the Eskimos during the summer?

Again, if the guy who owns the hockey team, Katz, decides he wants the Oiler brand on another station to bolster coverage, it will happen. Do think CHED "lets" the Oilers broadcast Oil Kings games on TEAM 1260 or does it happen because the boss says it will?

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#62 David S
June 14 2009, 01:32PM
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But seriously Robin. You do yourself a great disservice because the Thursday JAG show with you and Gregor is the best segment of the week IMO.

However I would say that the production value of most Edmonton AM radio is horrendously low. Could be the low-budget, small market thing but when I hear some of those 80's sound clips on Jason's show it's enough to set the teeth to grindin'.

At the same time, the amount of high quality interviews Jason conducts is staggering. I can't get over the range of well placed individuals he comes up with on a regular basis. And he doesn't pull many punches either.

It seems to me that the Team could position itself as "opinionated sports radio". Listeners would agree or not, but at least they'd tune in to get an opinion, which would open up the floor for more exciting topics. Think the Oilers suck? Think they rule? Listen to the Team and join in the conversation.

I would say that this topic in general may be an indicator that perhaps there's only room in this market for one cracking AM sports oriented station that brings the goods. I suspect Katz realizes as much too. It seems like a pretty blatant opportunity because the reality here is that if you don't have access to the Oilers you aren't carrying sports in this city.

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#63 Rusty Shackleford
June 14 2009, 01:44PM
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@ David S: Did I just read something about Megan Fox?!?!????

I love Team 1260, listen almost everyday. At first I was kind of choked with the whole switch to Fox Sports, but I'm getting used to it now. I was happy to see that there actually was coverage of the Cup Finals on an American station.

Gregor is my favortite sports radio personality in Edmonton. period.

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#64 Rusty Shackleford
June 14 2009, 01:48PM
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@ RossCreek: I'm late on reading this post, but wow. I just cringed when I heard The Warrior Hour with WT. Goodness me.

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#65 David S
June 14 2009, 01:54PM
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Rusty Shackleford wrote:

I just cringed when I heard The Warrior Hour with WT. Goodness me.

His FaceBook page says it all.

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#66 Hoos
June 14 2009, 01:58PM
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@Robin

Your quotation is misattibuted to me. It came from Esa.

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#67 West Coast Oil
June 14 2009, 02:01PM
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I regularly listen to the Team 1040 out here in Vancouver and enjoy most of the hosts so when I tried tuning into the Team 1260 online I was excited thinking same format but mainly Oilers and Eskimoes info! What a let down! 1260 unfortunately was very boring and quite lame. It seemed whenever I put the 1260 on they were talking about Soccer, NFL or other topics I really had no interest in. I dont mind hearing the latest in other sports but the one thing 1040 has realised is during hockey season people mainly want hockey news and that is what they give you all day. The ony time that hockey seemed to be the main focus on 1260 was the Stauffer show. 1040 does some entertaining things like having Canucks GM Mike Gillis on once a week, Ray Ferraro is on every afternoon as a cohost (sort of) on the drive time show, they bring in the newspaper beat writers for their take on things and different hockey insiders for regular segments. Perhaps 1260 does some of this (or all of it) but I wouldn't know because it hasn't kept my attention long enough.

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#68 Rusty Shackleford
June 14 2009, 02:02PM
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I can still remember how I got to listening to The Team. Gregor used to do bits for Fearless Fred on the Bear, and I decided to listen to his show once in the night slot. Then I started listening to Stauffer in the afternoon.

Stauffer had more insight, and went on some crazy rants (I still laugh when thinking about all of the backlash over the Eskimos coverage right before he walked), but I've really enjoyed Gregor's show since the switch. If I don't agree with what Jason says, chances are Fraser will talk Gregor off the ledge. Makes for good radio.

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#69 PaperDesigner
June 14 2009, 02:06PM
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Bob Stauffer is the best hockey analyst in Edmonton, as far as I'm concerned, and anything which gives his rather large mouth an outlet is fine by me.

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#70 mt
June 14 2009, 02:13PM
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Yikes... I'm too am down here in Calgary and the main reason I don't listen to 960 is because of all that garbage Richards does with his "impressions". They are junk and played way too much! I would also say he is as big a flames homer as Jake is an Oilers homer. Which is why I never listed to "way off side"... except the last 15 minutes to catch the replay of Bob McKenzie's interview on Wednesday's & Friday's (if I missed it). I'll be listening to Bryn's show tomorrow and see how it's changed.

A 1-3 show with Stauffer would be Awesome...

No complaints about Gregor's show... I try to listen everyday! And will rarely miss Browlee or Barns co-host days!

@ RossCreek:

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#71 Rusty Shackleford
June 14 2009, 02:24PM
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I wonder how many others would not know of the Nation if it weren't for Gregor's shoutouts? I wasn't a reader of the Nation until I kept hearing about it on the show.

*thinks of how depressed he would be without his regular fix of Wanye's MS paints*

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#72 RossCreek
June 14 2009, 02:45PM
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I agree that Richards replays his skits too much and some aren't good. But that Armitage one cracks me up. But he really grew on me. He has great interview guests. All I know is Bryn n Jake were getting stale. As for OilersNation, I too heard about it from Jason and Robin on the radio. I checked it out here and there, but got hooked around the trade deadline.

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#73 Neil
June 14 2009, 02:46PM
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@ esa tikkanen: I must be in the minority. I want to hear more NBA, NFL & MLB than the local shows air. Some oif the Oiler talk gets to repetitive. I would also like to hear more about other teams in the NHL, and not just the Canadian teams. This is why I listen to Dan Patrick podcasts instead of Rome and I like Myers & Hartman.

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#74 Robin Brownlee
June 14 2009, 02:49PM
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@ West Coast Oil: You should tune in more often. Hockey rules the airwaves here and if you didn't get enough then it was bad timing. NFL, NBA and everything else is a distant second to hockey for me so I don't ever get tired of hearing or talking about it.

I have no inside information as to what TEAM 1260 intends to do to improve its numbers, but the best way to make it what you want it to be is through feedback.

Contact the station. Contact the programming director/station manager/sports director (Bryn Griffiths) and make yourself heard. If you want a 1-3 show, let them know. If you want the return to a late night show, same thing.

It's fine to comment here, but you and other ON readers need to make your throughts known. Just tuning out without asking for specific changes and progamming tweaks doesn't make things better, it just kills the ratings and the station.

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#75 Bob Stauffer
June 14 2009, 03:24PM
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Hey Robin,

Interesting piece. Rule number one in life is never say never I guess. Case in point having Ritch Winter call me last July 1st and saying he was going over to Daryl Katz's that night to meet with Kevin Lowe and Katz about his prized client Marian Hossa. This after an ugly five-year period where Lowe and Winter never spoke to each other. The Team 1260 gave me a wonderful opportunity and will always have a very special place in my heart. The guys that believed in like Bryn Griffiths, Marty Forbes and John Sexsmith knew I just needed a forum to run with, and I loved being a part of the Team 1260. I wish them nothing but success in the future. There is no question CHED has a done an excellent job supporting then Oilers through their cluster (Joe FM, CISN and Cool 880/I news) and their production values are top notch too. Working with Rod Phillips and Dan Tencer has been fun as well. Also I have never found Rod to be one to give the Oilers a free pass; and last season when I worked with Dan alot I found him to quite objective when it came to the Oilers. Also I was not "coached" to tone it down when I made the move. I knew that Craig MacTavish was not going to get fired during the season, and it should be mentioned that the Oilers failures as an organization can't just be blamed on the coaches who took the bullet at the NHL, AHL and ECHL level. Also contrary to what some hardcore football fans might think, I also miss covering football. Yes I have a dream job broadcasting the Oilers, but I love football as well. I was VERY close to the Eskimo situation for a few seasons, and WILLED Golden Bears football broadcasts on the Team 1260, and actually moved some of clients from "Total Sports" to U of A broadcasts to help cover off costs. Anyways interesting idea, don't know if it is an option or not.

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#76 David S
June 14 2009, 03:25PM
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Robin, if I were in the management group at Team 1260 I would consider this thread to be some of the best consumer research I ever got my hands on.

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#77 RossCreek
June 14 2009, 03:32PM
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Well if we're bringing Bob back, why not just put him on the morning show with Bryn and Corey. And when Bob's on the road, Bryn and Corey can handle the duties, perhaps with a guest host, perhaps Robin Brownlee (who also does the 1-3 slot with ??) Perhaps ;-)

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#78 trying to be a fan
June 14 2009, 04:17PM
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@ Robin Brownlee:

stick with your thoughts if you have to but read the numbers again. They clearly tell me that you are not delivering what the majority of fans want or you would be gaining listeners rather than plummeting in the ratings. I can't believe that it isn't obvious to all concerned.

Bob was quite critical as well but he always added enough interesting stories and perspectives that his show was more than 3 hours of bashing. He would stand up for certain players and management at times and tried to see the other side. I believe he was smart enough to know that hind sight is always 20/20 and that sometimes there is another side to the story. Lately that hasn't seemed to be the case.

You (assuming you are leaking the news that you are soon to take a bigger role) and the Team have a great opportunity to do well because the competition is pretty weak and there has to be a lot of sports fans looking for an interesting show to listen to. Think about all the Oiler fans that are getting sick of what comes across as one sided negative conversations and see if you can find a way to get your show balanced enough to get them back. Imagine what the ratings would be if you were successful.

As an Oiler fan I don't want to here only positive comments either but I would be willing to listen more if there was a good balance.

My perception over the last hockey season was that when the Oilers won the next day's shows were all about why they should not have won or mixed martial arts and when they lost the shows were strictly about how inept the organization and players are.

As an an Oiler fan I am still searching for a place to get some balanced insights into my team and players.

I hope you find a way to give me what I am looking for.

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#79 West Coast Oil
June 14 2009, 04:24PM
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@Robin how much do the other Team stations work together sharing ideas that work? I realise each market is different but they must share similarities. Also the Team 1040 managed to get the Canucks broadcast rights any chance of the 1260 getting Oilers rights

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#80 RossCreek
June 14 2009, 04:50PM
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Monday-Friday 6-7 The Early Bird Show with Bryn & Corey 7-10 The Bob Stauffer Show with Bob, Bryn & Corey 10-1 The Jim Rome Show 1-3 Hockey Talk with AJ Jakubic & Robin Brownlee 3-6 Just A Game with Jason Gregor & Will THE THRILL Fraser 6-6 ESPN Radio except on game days (Oilers/Oil Kings/Capitals/Eskimos) The Post Game Show with John Sexsmith & Brad Slater

Saturday 8-9 Krush Sports Perfomance Show 9-12 The Pipeline Show with Dean & Guy 12-2 Ultimate Soccer with Soccer Steve 2-4 Live From Gretzky's 4-5 Fourth Period

PROGRAM DIRECTOR: RossCreek

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#81 Librarian Mike
June 14 2009, 05:03PM
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@ RossCreek:

The only problem with that playlist is that I'd probably get fired for listening to the radio all day long. Well done!

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#82 Dale
June 14 2009, 05:11PM
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RossCreek wrote:

Monday-Friday 6-7 The Early Bird Show with Bryn & Corey 7-10 The Bob Stauffer Show with Bob, Bryn & Corey 10-1 The Jim Rome Show 1-3 Hockey Talk with AJ Jakubic & Robin Brownlee 3-6 Just A Game with Jason Gregor & Will THE THRILL Fraser 6-6 ESPN Radio except on game days (Oilers/Oil Kings/Capitals/Eskimos) The Post Game Show with John Sexsmith & Brad Slater Saturday 8-9 Krush Sports Perfomance Show 9-12 The Pipeline Show with Dean & Guy 12-2 Ultimate Soccer with Soccer Steve 2-4 Live From Gretzky’s 4-5 Fourth Period PROGRAM DIRECTOR: RossCreek

Your program schedule has some promise, but Bob Stauffer will only return to Team 1260 if Mr. Katz buys the station.

I'd like A.J. Jakubec and Robin Brownlee with an early afternoon hockey show.

I'd like the return of ESPN.

I'd like a local evening talk show every night, including weekends--when the Oil Kings aren't on the schedule.

Can't say I'm a fan of Soccer Steve--maybe it's because soccer isn't a primary sport for me--but he is passionate and that comes across well on the radio.

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#83 JonW
June 14 2009, 05:13PM
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It is my understanding that ESPN raised their rebroadcast rates. Even the Fan 960 has gone the Fox route so we are not alone.

Rumour is flying that this is because TSN is looking to get into the radio business with ESPN.

Listening to ESPN radio via XM I have to say there are some very specific things I can point out as a great success.

Mike and Mike in the Morning, the show blew me away. Personally I would like to see the team match up an explayer (football or hockey) with a journalist type. What Mike and Mike shows is how that can work in chemistry.

Especially when the player is perceived as a softy like Mike Golic.

To me their light but sporty approach is good. I also found for the most part that the Fan 960 has the right approach having a 1-3 show.

Seriously I would cede the evening to Ched but go after the daytime until the Team gets some rights from either the Esks or Oilers.

Btw I loved Specter on the show, and Robin you are a close second.

My biggest criticism about 1260 stems from the fact that it does nothing to really keep listeners. And it appears Jim Rome is not delivering in Edmonton and it maybe time to replace his show.

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#84 Robin Brownlee
June 14 2009, 05:20PM
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trying to be a fan wrote:

stick with your thoughts if you have to but read the numbers again. They clearly tell me that you are not delivering what the majority of fans want or you would be gaining listeners rather than plummeting in the ratings. I can’t believe that it isn’t obvious to all concerned.

Pardon? I hope when you say "you" you're talking about TEAM 1260 because, as a once-week-co-host, I'm not exactly steering the ship. The numbers speak for themselves, and I'm not ignoring the obvious -- that listenership is on the decline and the reasons for it have to be addressed. That's why I said contact the people who make the decisions and speak your mind. Just dialling out tells management that something is amiss, but it doesn't provide detailed, constructive criticism.

trying to be a fan wrote:

You (assuming you are leaking the news that you are soon to take a bigger role)

I haven't had one conversation with anybody in Astral management about taking on a bigger role with the station. I'm not a big piece of this puzzle. West Coast Oil wrote:

@Robin how much do the other Team stations work together sharing ideas that work? I realise each market is different but they must share similarities. Also the Team 1040 managed to get the Canucks broadcast rights any chance of the 1260 getting Oilers rights

No idea on the sharing part. It only makes sense to borrow from formats that work, but I'm an outsider when it comes to process and decision-making at 1260 and I don't know who puts their heads together and comes up with programming ideas and suggestions for shows and formats.

I see things at 1260 that I'd do differently and the same goes with CHED, but my opinions are those of a rank amateur in the radio biz. It's easy to say do this or do that. Getting it done is another matter.

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#85 West Coast Oil
June 14 2009, 05:26PM
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@ Robin, Wanye or whoever. What are the chances of getting some of the Team 1040 guys posting on Canucks Army and by extension here? I think articles by Rick Ball, David Pratt and a few others would be entertaining

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#86 RossCreek
June 14 2009, 05:56PM
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RossCreek wrote:

6-7 The Early Bird Show with Bryn & Corey

Bryn & Corey set the table so to speak. They could still throw on a Gregor replay, take some phone calls and banter about some of the daily topics. RossCreek wrote:

7-10 The Bob Stauffer Show with Bob, Bryn & Corey

Bob grabs the big seat at 7 after Bryn & Corey "warm up the crowd". Big-time regular guests/guest hosts (Darren Dreger, Mark Spector, Robin Brownlee, Ryan Rishaugh, Jonathan Huntington, Eric Duhatschek, Scott Taylor,etc) RossCreek wrote:

1-3 Hockey Talk with AJ Jakubec & Robin Brownlee

All hockey, ALL the time! Talk to the beat writers in town & across the league. Give us some insiders (Bob McKenzie, Mike Brophy, Pierre Lebrun, etc.) JIM MATHESON! Player interviews.

Not even sure if he does this anymore, but if he does maybe Gregor can play Yukon Jack's rant. Also GREGOR, maybe some of Jody Vance or Jennifer Hedger or Martine Gaillard, etc. could be rotated as a weekly woman's take for a segment. Hearing women that know what they're talking about might actually be interesting. *Re-reads last sentence, giggles, contemplates changing sentence, giggles... and post*

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#87 RossCreek
June 14 2009, 05:58PM
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Rain day in Airdrie sitting in a hotel. What can I say, I'm bored.

Am I twittering?

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#88 sns2
June 14 2009, 06:45PM
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Robyn,

RossCreek has a winning formula to reinvigorate The Team. First, I don't want to slag Jake because he's out of a job and that's no fun, but there was just not enough sports analysis / opinion with him and Bryn, and i don't think our hockey-mad city wanted to hear his schtick anymore. Personally, I alter between stations on the drive to work, but am glued on 1260 on my way home.

The best radio we've ever heard is when Stauffer was mixing it up with you and Spector, plus Big George's odd appearance. That was great radio, imo the best this city's ever seen, and I started listening to sports talk radio with John Short way back in the day. Having said that, I think Jason Gregor is doing a great job in his own right, but loses a bit when he drifts off into MMA or Lacrosse territory. I think his show is at its best when your on with him. You bring much of what Stauffer brought. You pull no punches, speak with insight and from a position of experience, plus your still connected. To me, if Griffiths has got his head on straight, he would be offering you a stack of scoots to take Jake's chair. Question is, would you be interested and could it fit in with your writing (or any other job you may have)? This would be a start to getting the station back on track.

One of the other points is that no one has picked up the Esks angle since Gregor took over from Stauffer. Maybe Jon Sexsmith could go down that road in preparation for taking over from Hallsy, that is unless Stauffer is going to snag that gig too.

You do a darn good job Robin, and if they sound you out, grab it fast. We need some serious Oiler talk in the morning.

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#89 Harlie
June 14 2009, 07:43PM
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how can 1260 even entertain the idea of being the rights holer for the Oilers when their signal starts getting fuzzy when your 10 minutes out of town? 630 love it or hate it reaches many more homes and at great distances.

Too bad about Jake gettin the hook and I hope he lands on his feet. I still think with his voice and his rocker attitude he should be on the Bear or K97 etc. Good luck mano!

Lastly I'd love to hear Bob again 1260 as a daily and I see that he chimed into this topic (good to see ya Bob!) but how can you travel with the Oilers and still do a daily show on the radio? I would envision a lot of guest hosts and Bob doin the show from his cellphone, no?

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#90 Harlie
June 14 2009, 07:47PM
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sorry grammar sucks today..14 hours of drinkin yesterday apparently is not good for putting sentences together today. Shocker!

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#91 Robin Brownlee
June 14 2009, 07:50PM
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sns2 wrote:

To me, if Griffiths has got his head on straight, he would be offering you a stack of scoots to take Jake’s chair. Question is, would you be interested and could it fit in with your writing (or any other job you may have)? This would be a start to getting the station back on track.

I have a three-year-old son and I need to be getting up at 5 a.m.? As for fitting it in with my writing, it's not like I have a hectic schedule anymore. I freelance with CP, write for ON and contribute to Metro Edmonton, although they just gassed all their local columnists like me in a belt-tightening move. I'd welcome a reason to go to the rink and produce something written or spoken on a daily basis.

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#92 Archaeologuy
June 14 2009, 08:05PM
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@ Robin Brownlee:

BOOO 5 am. It seems to me that most of your articles on ON dont get posted until later at night, so I'm thinking that showing up to work at the buttcrack of dawn would be a no no.

I dig the idea of you being a full timer at 1260. Lets get it done. Where do I sign the petition?

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#93 trying to be a fan
June 14 2009, 08:21PM
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@ Robin Brownlee: Sorry Robin, I know you are not steering the ship and did not mean to insinuate that. But I do think a guy with your credentials and insights might be able to get the ball rolling. The guy steering the ship has his own issues and I don't believe losing Jake will fix them. On air he is extremely defensive which doesn't leave a listener feeling real good about providing feedback. In his world players are measured mostly by the money they make so what is good for the goose is good..... He is getting the big bucks so he should be able to figure it out.

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#94 Robin Brownlee
June 14 2009, 08:47PM
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Archaeologuy wrote:

@ Robin Brownlee: BOOO 5 am. It seems to me that most of your articles on ON dont get posted until later at night, so I’m thinking that showing up to work at the buttcrack of dawn would be a no no. I dig the idea of you being a full timer at 1260. Lets get it done. Where do I sign the petition?

Thanks, but I'm not looking to turn this issue into a "hire Brownlee" campaign. If TEAM 1260 is going to be relevant in this town -- and it can be -- there's a lot of issues that need to be addressed. -- Filling empty show slots. -- Developing/hiring the talent to fill those slots. -- Continuing to refine existing shows (More On Sports, Just A Game, Pipeline Show). -- Making a real effort, not a gesture that's just lip service, to find out what people want to hear and then deliver it. -- Co-ordinating show content to ensure there isn't too much overlap.

trying to be a fan wrote:

But I do think a guy with your credentials and insights might be able to get the ball rolling.

I appreciate the sentiment, but getting the ball rolling means being in on the process of decision making and nobody from Astral has asked me for my take on things. Listeners can get the ball rolling. Then, it's up to the people who make the calls and the hosts of the shows to run with it.

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#95 heavyd
June 14 2009, 08:52PM
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Brownlee, have you ever talked to gregor about your feelings towards the team?

I think that he might be able to do something with that, if maybe you discuss it with him.

And who knows maybe the team is happy with where they are right know.

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#96 RossCreek
June 14 2009, 08:55PM
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You see, I knew Brownlee wouldn't be overly excited with rising with the roosters, thats why I pegged him in @ 1-3 :-)

Rather than their 6-9, 9-10 format, I figure an "early bird" 6-7, 7-10 format would be neat.

If there's any chance of bringing Bob back, its gotta be for the morning show. As mentioned earlier, the 2 biggest slots are the morning and afternoon drives. Bob's already done the afternoon and would have trouble filling that role given his other commitments, and Gregor has solidified himself in that slot. So what if Bob has to miss a couple months worth of shows due to travel and broadcast commitments. That's what guest hosts are for, and like I said earlier, Bryn & Corey can handle it themselves if need be. But it would be "tight" to have some awesome guest hosts on board too.

ROBIN, do you have any relationship whatsoever with AJ? Hockey Talk, I'm tellin ya. Even bring us the WHL scoops. Make the Oil Kings relevant. Or Robin & Dean Millard with AJ joining Guy for The Pipeline Show. Or whomever.

The Nation has spoken, AND WE WANT QUALITY RADIO ALL DAY!

(Is Bryn still in charge? Let's fire off some emails boys.)

There's enough talent in Edmonton, not to mention across Canada to have an AWESOME lineup. Make it happen.

GREGOR, props for filling Bob's shoes. You're different, yet you still pull your weight. Keep it up!

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#97 heavyd
June 14 2009, 08:59PM
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Lets start a facebook page, or a petion online and then send it to whoever is in charge. And see what we can do? Anyone interested?

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#98 heavyd
June 14 2009, 09:00PM
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Cause it seems to me that around 95% of the people who post on here would rather listen to the team then 630ched. So lets try and get the team to pass 630ched.

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#99 Robin Brownlee
June 14 2009, 09:11PM
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RossCreek wrote:

ROBIN, do you have any relationship whatsoever with AJ? Hockey Talk, I’m tellin ya. Even bring us the WHL scoops. Make the Oil Kings relevant. Or Robin & Dean Millard with AJ joining Guy for The Pipeline Show. Or whomever.

Hey, one night in Moose Jaw doesn't constitute a relationship . . . I don't know AJ well. I have no WHL scoops. It's been 20 years since I last covered the league. When I last covered the WHL in Kamloops, Scott Niedermayer and Darryl Sydor were 16-year-old hopefuls on the Blazers blueline and Rob Brown still had his own hair.

My focus and area of, ahem, expertise, is the NHL and the Oilers. Why break up the Pipeline Show line-up? They have developed a nice following and they do a good job with a niche nobody else tackles.

I've got a lot of respect for guys like John Sexsmith and Kevin Karius. It's too bad they aren't in the mix in some way.

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#100 Robin Brownlee
June 14 2009, 09:16PM
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heavyd wrote:

Lets start a facebook page, or a petion online and then send it to whoever is in charge. And see what we can do? Anyone interested?

And you can be like the five tools who showed up outside Rexall Place to demand MacTvish be fired after something like 10,000 people started a Facebook page. Is sending an e-mail or making a phone call to the people who call the shots at TEAM 1260 really too much work if you'e serious about making your opinion known? (slaps forehead and mutters something about lazy punk kids these days).

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