We’re in our second playoff series of being subjected to the ESPN/ABC top NBA broadcast team of Mike Breen, Jeff Van Gundy and Mark Jackson.

You’ve seen my thoughts on them here and there – I usually like Van Gundy, don’t like Breen, and Jackson isn’t really a factor to me – but what do you think of them?

The following poll judges them as a group, if you wish to give a specific comment on the performance of Van Gundy as opposed to Breen, or Jackson, then please do in the comment section below.


I’d also like to welcome and thank the latest BSMW sponsor, Greater Boston Tickets. They offer tickets to the best events in the New England area, including the pro sports teams, concerts, theater, and also Vegas and Broadway shows.


11 thoughts on “Breen, Van Gundy and Jackson – What Do You Think?

  1. I actually think this ABC crew is OK. Van Gundy is always worth listening to, Jackson doesn't offend me either way, and Breen is decent as a play-by-play guy. It's when Breen gets into the editorializing and strays from the play-by-play that he starts to get under my skin (could he LOVE Kobe Bryant anymore, really?).

    But all in all I think these guys are OK–I just wish Johnny Most was still around, because turning down the TV sound and turning up the radio broadcast during the NBA Finals just isn't the same without Johnny's hysterics and histrionics.


  2. I agree with your individual opinions Bruce. If we could slide in Marv Albert for Breen then I think we have something.


    1. Bigtime agree, Curry. Mike Breen's love of the Lakers and his constant Kobe/Phil fawning stains his call of the game. Marv Albert is cut from the Mike Gorman cloth: fantastic pipes, completely objective, as he proved in the previous series in the West.


  3. I agree with you. Van Gundy actually says what he thinks, and gives real analysis. Jackson settles for the soundbite, and Breen is everything that is wrong with announcers.


  4. I actually did turn the sound off in the 4th last night. Van Gundy is all right, but does not know when to shut up and let the game speak for itself. I don't want to hear about who had what for lunch everyday when he was with the Knicks. There is an actual Finals game going on.

    Mark Jackson is just terrible. He's like Stuart Scott with a little Chris Berman thrown in.


  5. As with many/most national announcers, these guys — Breen in particular — focus waaay too much on contrived storylines at the expense of telling us what the hell is going on in the game. Specifically, I've lost count at how many times they've neglected to tell the viewers who a foul was called on because they're too busy prattling on about some silly topic.

    JVG calls it as he sees it and I have no problem with that. Jackson ("hand down, man down") tries too hard to be "hip" and Breen is basically Joe Buck, minus having a famous announcer as a dad. They both blow.


  6. They'd be great if it wasn't for Breen. He tries way to hard to be the third color guy in the booth without the knowledge or cache to back it up. He's an annoyance considering how good Jackson and Van Gundy are.


  7. Compared to most national broadcasters that we must endure, these guys aren't bad. Unlike watching ESPN or FOX MLB games, I don't hate every second of the NBA Playoffs.


  8. Breen is horrible. The anti-Boston bias is blatant. Even his two colleagues have chided him about it. Bring in Marv. Jackson is trite. He tries to make a profound statement every time he opens his mouth. Why do they need three? Van Gundy is OK, but that's because he's compared to the other two. This NY Knicks "old home club" has too many inside jokes and stupid stories. What's really unprofessional is that they go on and on with their stories and barely mention the game. Albert and Fratello are vastly superior, as are Stockton and Miller.


  9. I actually enjoy all three of ABC's broadcasters. They flow well. I do not hear the bias that a lot of people seem to hear. Van Gundy is definitely the best. His insight is excellent and I enjoy his sense of humor. Breen calls the action thoroughly and efficiently. Jackson although the weakest of the three is fine.

    As far as our local broadcasters go I cannot be as kind. Sean Grande makes every situation dire. I know I once mentioned Breen saying game six was not over and people should stick around but I felt he was trying to keep viewers from changing stations. For Grande, every situation is cataclysmic. During the playoff against Miami, there was a situation where the Celtics lead in game two went from 31 to 25. Grande said the effect. Look out Miami's on a run. Another time, during the season the Celtics were down by seven in the second quarter and Grande then says, the Celtics are letting this one get out of reach. As Sergeant Hulka once said, "Settle down Francis."

    Cedric Maxwell might be the worst analyst in the game. When he is not insulting female officials, "Get me some bacon and eggs" he is adding such insight like "quack, quack", or "get me a napkin so I can wipe my mouth". UGH. Maxwell was at his best this year when he had laryngitis and could only state what was going on on the court without the extras. He needs to be sick more often.

    I have not been able to listen to ESPN's coverage but if the coverage consists of Jim Durham, Hubie Brown and Dr. Jack Ramsey then it is by far the best coverage of all. Nobody describes what is going better than Hubie or Jack. Hubie is in his late 70's while Jack is pushing 90 with a voice that is as strong as ever. When Brown or Ramsey are describing what is going on you can actually picture it with their words only. They are fabulous. Durham is as good as basketball play-by-play guy around. He is right up there with Marv Albert.

    P.S. This may have posted twice. I hit enter when in the middle of typing once. sorry.


  10. I actually yelled "shut up" after Van Gundy continued to complain when Rondo got the technical for "shoving" Artest in game 5. Come on, Van Gundy, it's called "unsportsmanlike conduct"! Isn't that what it's suppose to be about or should a technical only be called if "you" deem the push/shove hard enough? Did you even watch the replay when Rondo mouth was also spewing a few "unsportsmanlike" words (I'm sure) as well? Even your buddies were trying to politely tell you to "Stop" with your babble….you can be sooooo annoying. Sometimes you talk way too much! I have to put the tv on mute for my sanity!


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