Joel Meyers, who has been doing play-by-play on Lakers games since 2003, the last six of those seasons on TV, has been told he will not have his contract renewed for next season, according to several sources.
Meyers was added to the Lakers’ broadcast team on radio when Paul Sunderland, who came in after the passing of Chick Hearn, was moved to a TV-only play-by-play call, eliminating the simulcast. Spero Dedes was hired from the NBA TV channel as the radio play-by-play job at the time.
Lakers media relations director John Black said: “All our announcers’ contracts expire at the end of the season. We will respectfully decline commenting on or discussing any possible changes until the conclusion of our season.”
Speculation is that Dedes, who for the last six seasons has established himself as one of the more sought-after young play-by-play voices in sports today, would be the most likely candidate to fill the Lakers’ TV job. Sources confirmed that the Lakers and Dedes will soon begin contract discussions.
The Lakers’ new long-term deal with two exclusive Time Warner Cable channels starts in the 2012-13 season.
The 31-year-old Dedes, who joined the Lakers in 2005, has done college basketball during the recent NCAA tournament for CBS as well as working on the NFL Network as a host and doing play-by-play, as well as doing the NFL on CBS.
Meyers, a resident of Hidden Hills, has a long established track record in Southern California sports, calling Angels games in the late 1980s as well as the L.A. Raiders, Dodgers game on cable in the early 1990s, and Los Angeles Lazers indoor soccer games for the old Prime Ticket.
Further speculation is that Bill Macdonald would be a front-runner for a Lakers’ radio job opening, as well as a role with the Lakers-Time Warner channels. Macdonald, who has been with Fox Sports West and Prime Ticket for the last 25 years, has filled in on radio games for Dedes for the last couple of seasons when Dedes was excused to do national NFL or college basketball broadcasts.