WEEI officially announced yesterday what Chad Finn had reported weeks ago – that Jerry Thornton would be joining the Dale and Holley show as the “permanent” third host.

One head-scratcher from the release:

Thornton says he’s honored to join WEEI as a full-time cohost and writer. “It’s not often a cultural institution like ‘EEI takes a chance on a guy with no journalism background, no formal training and no discernible talent,” he said with his trademark humor. “I’m grateful to Entercom and glad a lifetime spent listening to the station and reading WEEI.com has paid off.”

Besides his reputation as a prolific sports journalist, Thornton is also known across New England as a very popular stand-up comedian.

This move concludes a long period of self-proclaimed “media whoring” by Thornton, who had been heard in the last couple years not only on Dale, but on 98.5, CSNNE, Glenn Ordway’s Big Show Unfiltered, and other outlets.

His time on the Patriots post game shows on CSNNE ended recently when he was replaced with 98.5 evening guy and Felger Youth Rich Keefe. Is it fair to assume that Thornton, who is an unabashed Patriots fanboy and was known to needle Felger for his hot takez, was removed at Felger’s behest and replaced with someone less inclined to cheerlead for the team and challenge him?

I’M NOT SAYING IT HAPPENED, I’M JUST ASKING THE QUESTION! (Is that how it’s done?)

Yes, Felger, who claims that Bill Belichick only surrounds himself with “yes-men” has done a pretty good job of doing the same thing himself. You’re absolutely right, Mike!

The addition of Thornton to Dale and Holley seems to be a final experiment in the “good guy” genre of sports radio. The threesome won’t offend many people, but won’t stir things up too much either. As such, they’re a nice antidote to the competition in their time slot, but as Finn notes today (Jerry Thornton added as third voice on WEEI’s ‘Dale and Holley’) this “permanent” move may only last the winter.

I seriously shudder at the notion of a Kirk Minihane-led afternoon show. We may as well give up all hope in the human race at that point.

*****

The Patriots Twitter account apologized this morning for a racist Tweet which was generated through a campaign to thank followers for reaching the 1 million mark.

Followers were asked to retweet a tweet which would then generate a image with a Patriots jersey with the user’s Twitter handle on the back. Someone apparently used a newly created account with a racist bent to retweet which created the offensive tweet which was deleted, but not before it made the rounds on the internet.

*****

The Patriots come off their bye week with a Prime Time Sunday night matchup with the Indianapolis Colts on NBC.

Rodney Harrison and Tony Dungy held a conference call this week to talk Patriots/Colts.

Among Harrison’s comments:

And Belichick, he’s treating this like it’s a playoff game because it’s a very difficult place. They play with a different speed when they’re on that turf, and it’s just something about the fans and just how excited they get when they’re playing against Belichick and Tom Brady and the New England Patriots. So I guarantee you, I wanted to have a conversation with Bill, and he declined to have a conversation with me.

So I know how important this game is, because he’s really focused on this game. So I think he approaches it like it’s a playoff game.

Harrison impressed by Gronk’s comeback – Bill Doyle has more on Harrison’s analysis of the game and the Patriots tight end.

Get all the Patriots coverage at PatriotsLinks.com.

*******

The Bruins are coming off a second straight brutal loss, this time to their rivals the Montreal Canadiens.

After so much talk about Tuukka Rask’s struggles against the Canadiens, the local talkers were predictably outraged when the Bruins sat him last night.

Sample the reaction at Bruinslinks.com.

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38 thoughts on “WEEI Still Shuffling The Deck Chairs

  1. I seriously shudder at the notion of a Kirk Minihane-led afternoon show. We may as well give up all hope in the human race at that point.

    Reasoning/logic behind it? The only thing they’d combat F+M with is another “F+M” just their own version. Sad it is but hasn’t it been proven you can’t throw someone like Dale Arnold up against that show for afternoon drive? Who knows if it’d work but it’d be a much safer move than trying to import another [Mike|Tim] [Benz|Salk] from wherever. I still wonder if they’d consider syndicating BSUNF.

  2. I think I’m in the minority on this site, but good for Jerry. I think he has worked hard to become a decent couch analyst. If you’ve ever read some of his long Patriots columns on Barstool, you know that his
    knowledge of the game has really grown over the years, to the point now that I think he’s very good. How will it work out with D&H, I don’t know, but I’m hoping for the best for all of them. Affable may not be the kindest kudos, but it sure beats annoying, which is what the competition is.

    And just to play along here, if they do move Minihane to afternoon drive, first I hope they move D&H&T back to the midday slot and send MFB packing. As to who I would put with Kirk, I would go Tom E Curran and Sean McAdam. Let’s be honest, people from this area will talk either baseball or football year round, so why not have two connected, established beat men for those sports. (Of course they may have to give up those gigs to do a M-F show.) But I think they could be a good counter balance to Minihane’s overreactionary and opinionated nature. Plus Sean knows hockey pretty well, not sure where the hoops talk comes from. But if they do go Minihane don’t give him a lap dog, give him someone who will argue with him. The Minihane McAdam arguments could be epic.

    1. Agree completely on Thornton. I don’t listen to talk radio, and rarely watch any of the local shows, but I enjoy his writings on Barstool Sports.

      Mix of analysis and humor, and he does criticize the Pats. He may be Pats fan, but he’s not a “reactionary” out there raving and ranting. (That may change on TV.)

    2. I’m with ya…I like Thornton, same reason I liked Pete Sheppard. For the simple reason that they at least seem to LIKE SPORTS and yes they seem more like “regular fans”…99% of the media seems to view sports like it’s a senate investigation.

  3. I’ve said it all along: ‘Media’ is where the dumbest of the dumb end up. I’m glad one of these hacks has enough upstairs to recognize it.

  4. So Felger got Thornton removed from the Patriots Post-game? Unreal. Though I’m no fan of F+M, I figured some of Felger’s act was just that — an act. After reading this, there’s no doubt he’s as thin-skinned as he seemed a few weeks ago when a fairly well-spoken caller who disagreed with him got shouted down and drowned out with Felger going “waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa! waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!” like a crying baby. No wonder why they seldom have anyone who disagree with F+M on the air — they must screen them out and never let them on.

    1. I think you missed the sarcasm of Bruce’s wild speculation turned fact imitation of F&M.
      I don’t think Thornton is sustainable. He is long-winded and repetitive in his columns. He makes the same constant National Lampoon and Harry Potter references on a loop. Popular comedian? He’s not big enough to open for the guy who opens for Steve Sweeney.
      If it’s only through December, it might be brief enough to keep him from torpedoing the whole deal.

      1. Not sure what you are referring to. It’s been reported elsewhere Thornton was dumped because Felger was apparently tired of his “pro Patriots” takes…in fact it may have been Bruce that said it the other day, or Chad Finn. Either way this wasn’t the first time I’ve seen it in the last day or two.

        I do agree with you about Thornton’s columns and humor.

        1. I read what Bruce just wrote as Bruce throwing out a rumor to make a point. No sooner do I type this, that Bob in Attleboro calls up and accuse Felger of getting Thornton booted.

          Side question: How old is Thornton? He looks 60. Not exactly lighting up that 18-35 Demo.

  5. As far as EEI goes, Thornton seems to be somewhat likeable and I don’t disagree with his Patriots takes. The problem is that he’s just not very compelling to listen to, and not very funny either. Certainly I can’t see him helping what’s been a very lethargic D&H show ever since it returned to the airwaves. The Minihane afternoon drive factor doesn’t surprise me either — D&H have sounded like this gig may have been temporary from the start, regardless of EEI’s publicity.

    Holley has been phoning it in forever, but especially recently. In the last 2 days I turned the show on this week, he was talking endlessly about Stevie Wonder one day, and then was going on a long rant about how he ruined his mother’s car the next.

    I’d sign up for a new 2-6 show with Kirk and someone like Curran (as has been mentioned here before), because these shows need to be about BALANCE. The problem with F+M is it’s a steady, singular voice that screams at you for 4 hours. Having people who disagree and can talk to one another is what makes good sports talk (see Mike & The Mad Dog).

  6. The five paragraphs starting with “His time on…” and ending with “human race at that point…” is truly the BEST of BSMW.

    Excellent work, Bruce.

    ****

    Who wouldn’t love to hear Tom E. Curran on the radio more often? There are always many endorsements to be found among the comments here.

    It just doesn’t appear to be his style. He was on with Dale and Holley today and the segment was ruined by Holley’s laser-like focus on TweetGate. Curran needs to be in Foxborough, in the ‘trenches’ so to speak. For the same reason, we will never again hear Mike Reiss hosting a HotTakez show. Those guys are real reporters at heart.

    ****

    Rich Keefe is an interesting study. When he’s not paired with Felger’s protege, Adam Jones, I find him bearable and sometimes even entertaining. But he’s clearly a follower and not a leader. When he’s on with Jones, he turns into Jones’ version of YARM.

    1. The Patriots “TweetGate” yesterday got airtime? It should have been a pun, if addressed at all.

      Couldn’t see it much more than a mistake. They removed it and apologized. Unless I missed something, someone making more of a big deal out of this is looking for LCD-fodder.

      1. I tuned into D & H at approximately 3:00 PM today, Tom E. was on the air with them and it seemed as if they had been talking about it for at least a little while (probably since 2:30). Then Michael Irvin called in at 3:30 and I was out of the car after that and don’t know if the conversation was picked up after the break at 4:00 PM.

      1. Thank you, finally someone else says it (even if in jest) – his hiring reeked of nepotism. His dad is connected to Dana Farber Center which is connected to WEEI.

    1. He won’t pack his bags. Dad takes care of that by sending staff to do it for him. He belongs on Oakland radio talking raiders football. Loser lol

    2. Ugh… Benz is just… awful. He pokes and prods New England fans, purposefully mind you, and gets so damn pissy when we fire back. Sometimes you wonder if its an act, until you see his response to Bruce on Twitter. Childish.

        1. He doesn’t like guns, fine. Debate point all day there for other forums, but the facebook post on the 3rd link.. he sounds like some blogger who lives in his mom’s basement approaching 40.

  7. Next year Meter will be back on D&C. D&H back to middays with Thornton. Minihane and Merloni afternoons.

    1. No way. Meter left to become a big time announcer. And now he’s doing play-by-play for . . . the very same teams he was doing it for when he was on D&C. Whoops! Someone grossly overestimated his career potential! Good thing he was born into money. No sweat off his trust fund.

  8. The shelf live has gone beyond safe to digest of the following media for me. Mazz, .Holey, Meter. Nomar caddy bitch. Benz , Toucher,Adams both of them.

    Why is it hard to find people who enjoy their jobs?

  9. Eh. Jerry Thornton doesn’t bug me. I’m relatively indifferent towards it. If they really want a good sports show, it would be nice to see D&H stick to interesting sports topics instead of falling into ESPN-esque storylines, or awful attempts at humor. Someone else here mentioned Holley’s entire segment about a car and his ex-girlfriend? I don’t remember what it was about specifically, but I do remember zoning out and thinking to myself “Why the hell is he talking about this nonsense during rush hour?”

  10. Yes Mike your right the Broncos are all in this year. That’s the way to do it. They have a short window. Oops that closed last year.
    Yes Mike your right the Broncos are frauds tomato cans the patriots haven’t beaten any top teams this year

    Even though the pats beat the Colts tonight. Don’t forget the Colts lost to the Broncos. Another tomato can
    KC. Your right Mike is the real deal. They went all in this year

  11. Greg Dickerson hosting WEEI NFL Sunday earlier today: “The Patriots non-existent running game.” Hotttt Takez.

    1. I thought this was Ordway’s plan all along.

      Biggest ?, I thought, would be the affiliate agreements. Would they remain? Can he just walk from ESPNNH and Satellite? Would Entercom let him keep those, anyways?

      Doesn’t say it but this assumes that either D+H are gone or they blowup the mid-day. Have to assume winterbooks are telling but their previous incarnation of the 10-2 (D+H) is partnered, which used to sometimes beat G+Z.

      Finn keeps speculating on MInihane going to afternoon, but I think that’s way too risky.

  12. Let me tell you something about Jerry Thornton. In the world of comedy they have a word to describe his style of comedy…HACK. He is a world class hack. When you have to shoe horn a joke into every sentence you utter that makes you a hack. Cheap puns and obvious play on words makes you a hack. I’m am so glad that Felger (he unconvincingly denies it) used his clout to get him off the Comcast show. Felger regrettably got Jerry greater exposer through his radio show and he ditches them for WEEI. Thank god he did so he can go there and go back into obscurity when WEEI teams him up for another afternoon drive time failed experiment. I am so glad that Felger replaced Wiggy with a real football commentator instead of another meathead former athlete or another hacky comedian looking to cash in. It seems like Felger learned his lesson with the last 2 defections.

    1. Look, you clearly loathe Jerry Thornton, which is fine. But why should he (or anyone) continue to make a few hundred dollars for a weekly appearance when a competitor offers (at least) tens of thousands to have a regular gig? You do realize that Felger used to make spot appearances on the Big Show, don’t you? And he left when he got a chance to host his own show. That’s not disloyalty. It’s just good sense.

      1. I didn’t say he shouldn’t have left. I’m glad he did. He was a waste of airtime. I was just noting how two media whores used his show to springboard to obscurity again with other stations. That’s all. they both suck btw. I have to question why Felger would ever have them on to begin with. They did him a favor by leaving.

        1. The great and powerful media whore Felger used the Big Show to springboard to obscurity on 890 AM back in the mid 00s. Just noting it.

    1. This is the type of faux positivity that Felger is famous for. If the Patriots finish with the 1 seed, then he’s right and he called it months ago. If they don’t, then he can rip them for underachieving. It’s a no lose situation in the sports entertainment business. And Wall Eyed Tony’s tweet is essentially a preemptive YARM.

      1. Is there a formal term? You’re setting yourself up to be right, no matter the outcome. I bet some Ph.D. got tenure for minting one.

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