Highlights, from our end, of the second episode of “Joe Buck Live” on HBO, which popped on this evening on the television set (caught the East Coast version of it; it’ll be on 10 p.m. West Coast time and has several replays):
By the way, it’s rated TV-PG with a warning about “Adult Language” …
Opening segment: Joe Buck walking down a New York street, reaches into his jacket, bumped by a pedestrian. He looks up and …
It’s Artie Lang.
Artie gives him the silent gesture like, “Hey, it’s me … remember me.”
Buck has a stressed look on his face. He raises his eyebrows. He turns and runs through pedestrians. Artie gives chase.
The audience laughs and claps.
If you need this explained to you, you don’t get the joke. (linked here)
Buck appears on stage to open the show, pretending he’s winded.
“I have not run like that in years,” he says.
Onto a conversation — chummy at best — with John Elway, Dan Marino, Joe Namath …
Onto a conversation with Jerry Jones and Mark Cuban … allowing the Cowboys’ owner to admit he’s “scared sh–less” about now owning a new huge stadium and having to pay for it …
Onto a conversation with Curt Schilling, who “announces” that “I am not going to run for the senate seat” recently vacated by the passing of Ted Kennedy. … “Obviously there’s a million pieces” to this, Schilling said, “and I couldn’t get over the first few going down that path … no matter what support and outreach was given to me didn’t make much sense.”
The final segment: “I Refuse to Hyperventilate” where Buck gets to riff on (with photos to help illustrate his point):
“I refuse to hyperventilate about the perceived East Coast bias in television coverage. As a broadcaster with almost two decades of experience, let me end all the conversation right here. There IS AN EAST COAST BIAS. And why shouldn’t there be?
“More people will watch Yankees-Red Sox than Cardinals-Reds, and more people will watch (N.Y.) Giants-Cowboys than Bengals-Chiefs. The nearly 25 million people who watched Sunday Night Football this weekend (on NBC) are just one example of that. For the networks, it’s like an election. Except that in this case, what’s at stake are ratings, not votes.
“Until everyone moves to Nashville and Minneapolis, you’re going to see the Yankees-Red Sox, Giants-Eagles a helluva lot more than you’re going to see Chiefs, Twins, Cardinals and Jazz. I live in the Midwest. I love it and I’ll deal with the East Coast bias in exchange for better air quality.
“Back to football: I understand why the NFL does this whole throwback uniform thing. I mean, they’re trying to sell more jerseys to fans. But I’m getting tired of trying to figure out which team is which when I’m trying to watch a game. I mean, the Falcons in Week 2, the Patriots and Bills from Week 1, no problem. I was alive when Steve Grogan actually wore that uniform. But a couple of years ago the Eagles played the Lions in a game that looked like the Frankfurt Galaxy against the Rhein Fire in NFL Europe. And they also insist in dressing referees like clowns. Orange striped shirts? Why? Do fans go out and buy officials’ uniforms as souvenirs? A grown man should not be made to dress like this on national television. Except maybe TNT’s Craig Sager.
“You want to see the face of a guy who doesn’t get it? Michael Crabtree, probably the most talented receiver in last year’s NFL draft. Not playing in the NFL right now. Went to Texas Tech, drafted by the 49ers, but refused to sign a contract with San Fran because he wants more money than the receiver that the Raiders drafted ahead of him. Now, a pretty good San Francisco team which I think will win the NFC West is without its draft pick while he demands a huge contract before he’s ever played a down of NFL football. What?
“To me, it’s all highlighting a major flaw in the NFL system. Why are rookies getting the best deals on clubs year after year? For that new collective bargaining agreement they’re talking about, how ’bout this: Pay the guy who’s shown what he can do and have a real draft pay scale for the kids coming out of college.
“And by the way, Michael, if you ever do sign that contract, good luck with coach Mike Singletary’s first practice. I’m sure he’ll completely understand your situation.”
If only Dennis Miller could have delivered it as smoothly and less snarky.
The show continues online with Schilling, Namath and Marino hanging out … Schill ripping on Deion Sanders … “but he is a great guy.” Schill then makes fun of Joe Buck having a segment called “Buckshot” …
“After what I went through on the first show, this is nuthin’,” Buck said of the ribbing.