By Tom Hoffarth
Andrea Kremer has a grasp of best practices when it comes to the art of a conversation.
“We all know there’s a language and code of football — Cover 1, RPOs, jet sweep,” she said. “But as Al Michaels said to me, 99% of the people probably don’t know what it all means.
“I’ve always fancied myself as an Xs and Os geek. But during my career, where I’ve done reporting and storytelling, a lot of it is really just conversation. Read more
By Tom Hoffarth Here’s an illustration of Bill Walton from the esteemed Jim Thompson, who drew it up to help set the tone for a piece we did on theRead more »
The Drill L.A. Morning Briefing podcast: Where to find it, how to enjoy it, what you can do to help us …
Let us help you help us … The latest revival of the Drill L.A. Morning Briefing podcast, after some retooling and a focus on how to make this something youRead more »
A SIGN OF THE (L.A.) TIMES: BABE RUTH HAS BEEN FRAMED … AS THE ORIGINAL ATHLETE-ENTERTAINER (WITH THE HELP OF A SPORTSWRITER)
When the White House announced last week Babe Ruth would be a recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom at a ceremony this Friday, Jane Leavy couldn’t help but tweetRead more »
Not much gets lost in translation during a Kings Spanish-language radio broadcast. Especially on a call like the one Francisco X. Rivera delivered on KWKW-AM (1330) during the second periodRead more »
We love L.A., too … but when do the visuals become too cliche? Fox figures it out during the World Series ‘equinox’
At some point, even the Hollywood sign sighs. C’mon, do we have to spell this out for you — the nine giant white letters propped up in the Santa MonicaRead more »
What if we told you there was a pro football league that existed more than 30 years ago, contrived as a complimentary spring exercise to the NFL’s fall season, butRead more »
With no introduction needed — aside from that he’s the co-host of KLAC’s “Petros & Money Show,” a college football analyst at Fox Sports, and the former captain of theRead more »
By Steve Lowery They say that numbers don’t lie. Then again, Mark Twain, who is way smarter then They, said there are “Lies, damn lies and statistics.” As this terrificRead more »
By Tom Hoffarth
By Tom Hoffarth
Robert Wuhl wasn’t making a true confession over a plate of eggs benedict and a side of oatmeal at John O’Groats Restaurant. But, yes, since it was brought up, it can now be told: Donald Trump inspired the comedic framework of his HBO show, “Arli$$.”
“If you remember the opening credits, and I say, ‘My name is Arliss Michaels, I represent athletes, these are my stories,’ and this book spins into the picture,” Wuhl says.
The book is a mocked-up cover of Wuhl, as Arliss Michaels, titled The Art of the Sport Super Agent.
“This is around 1995,” Wuhl continues between bites, looking at Mike Tollin, sitting next to him and working on a stack of pancakes at the Westside diner.
“I had read [Trump’s book] The Art of the Deal [from 1987] and I thought — remember, this? — I said, ‘This is total, 100 percent bullshit. You gotta read this, Mike. He’s saying stuff that I don’t believe a fuckin’ word of it. He’s telling you what happened, but I want to see what really happened.'” We can use this, as Arliss the sports agent telling you what happens, and then we prove he’s full of shit and show what really happened.”
And now there’s Trump, in the White House, dealing with much bigger issues.
“Who would have figured that?” says Wuhl.
HBO had a big-deal, seven-season, 80-episode run of Arli$$ from 1996 to 2002, feeding off the hypocritical irony of the sports world of that era, augmented with hundreds of cameo appearances by the biggest athletes of the day.
It comes back into focus more than 15 years because, after figuring out a way to re-introduce it to a new era of bingewatching and maybe as a reminder this was going on long before HBO’s “Ballers” and “Entourage,” the entire series is now available on HBO Go and HBO Now.
Our Q&A with Wuhl and Tollin appears in The Hollywood Reporter at this link.
Some more of it, of course, ended up on the cutting room floor.
Stuff like this: Read more
By Tom Hoffarth
Speaking for himself, Marcellus Wiley says there are weird moments talking the talk at Fox Sports’ Century City studios after walking away from a broadcasting career in ESPN’s L.A. Live facility near Staples Center.
“Kind of like having the ex-girlfriend living next door, isn’t it?” Wiley said with a laugh while driving from his Manhattan Beach home to do the Monday episode of the revised “Speak For Yourself” on FS1 with Jason Whitlock, a TV partnership officially formed Sept. 10.
“When I was at the Chargers-Rams game Sunday, I even went over to the ESPN radio guys and sat with a lot of my former bosses. I’m not about burning any bridges. Nothing but love and respect.”
So no evil backstory as to why the light-up-the-room 43-year-old switched allegiances. He said it’s just “pretty standard operations with an expired contract,” something he dealt with regularly over a 10-year NFL career as an All-Pro defensive end that included three seasons with the San Diego Chargers.
Read more at this link about Wiley’s move to Fox as well as how Kings fans will have to get used to a new way of listening to Nick Nickson and Daryl Evans on the audio feeds.
“I think I watched the NFL kill itself yesterday,” Jim Thompson admits on his site, www.thompsonsportsart.com, after watching Clay Matthews’ sack of Alex Smith on Sunday go down, officially, as a roughing the passer call. Read more
As Jim Thompson writes on ThompsonSportsArt.com: “Serena Williams is the best to ever play women’s tennis. She’s also a diva who, when losing, tends to blame everything and everyone within a tennis ball’s throw. Remember when she threatened to stuff a ball down a linesman’s throat. I hate to break the news but great athletes can be great big jerks. …” Read more
“Remember last year when Clay Helton was a genius? Remember two years ago when Helton was dog-meat after three games and was incompetent to coach an 8 year old’s AYSO soccer team?” Read more
By Tom Hoffarth
They haven’t created an alluring, fake profile on Match.com. Or paid starving writers to craft poetically positive posts on Yelp. Not even one robotic conspiracy about generating extra likes on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter. Read more