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Sports Media

2023 List Of Sports Media Personalties I Actually Respect

Respect

Respect
I’m going to try to be more positive. This is my list of sports media personalities that I actually respect. Read the list here.

2023 List Of Sports Media Personalties I Actually Respect

Soooo yesterday when I wrote the post on Shannon Sharpe joining ESPN, someone in the comments section on the new Newsbreak App deal we have called me out for what I said. I never take the comments personally. I’ve been punched in the face too many times for me to do anything other than laugh at the comments. However, I reflected and thought to myself that maybe I’d been too negative. Maybe I need to show more respect for others in the industry. Plus, it’s a good way for you the viewer to direct your attention to those who are more educated when they speak about sports.

I need people to understand that guys like Stephen A Smith and Skip Bayless are trash. Both should have been fired years ago and it’s amazing either are employed by any network. We have countless examples as to why that’s the case. I’ll let you dig through our database for those answers.

Maybe I’ve been too negative lately. Maybe I’ve given too much attention to the bums in this industry like Colin Cowherd. Plus, when the next episode of That’s Some Cheese comes out, I am going to blast Logan Camden (former intern that Cowherd hired after us) for being an absolute piece of trash. If you want a preview of that before the show comes out, here you go. Don’t worry, that show will be worth the watch and I pity the fool if I ever see him in person.

Trey is going to try to be positive today. I’m going to show some respect today to those that deserve it.

Before I dive into the list, let me set some parameters that you should know beforehand.

1: If someone isn’t on the list, it doesn’t mean I automatically think they suck. There are so many people in this industry and I’m not familiar with a significant amount of them. Anyone that has been reading this site long enough probably knows who I think is terrible. If you’re Sean Allen, then you should definitely assume you suck. Other than that, it’s not a guarantee that I think they’re bad if not on the list.

2: I am excluding all Vendetta employees from the list. I don’t think it’s necessary to play favorites and we have so many talented people that work for this place. All of which are underappreciated in the sports media realm. If companies with bigger pockets were smart, they would have ransacked my staff a long time ago. Except, we have such a great culture here that I’m not sure people would leave even with bigger financial offers elsewhere. I genuinely believe that.

That means I’m obviously excluding myself from the list despite the fact that every single sports environment I’ve ever been involved in (Fantasy Sharks, Def Pen, Fansided, Phillies, Sports Info Solutions) people find out pretty quickly that I’m the most talented MFer in this business.

Fansided promoted me to run their entire fantasy football department two weeks after being hired… Real story. Don’t worry, I will be running one of these sports teams before I day. I promise you that.

I mean… as I referenced in the last episode of Cheese, we literally just had someone quit his full time job at another media network to make less so that he can work here. Peep the Pro Wrestling section and you can figure that part out for yourself. In totality, I’ll take our staff over any other company out there. The more resources we get, the more dangerous this company will become. I’ll take our culture over everyone else’s and I won’t change to cater to someone that doesn’t fit here at Vendetta.

3: I consider myself really well-rounded but I’m not going to include every single sport. I’m not an expert on college basketball so I’m going to exclude those people as an example. If Karl/ Cervantes wants to craft that list, I’m all ears. However, if you have read this site long enough, you know I’m the most well-rounded journalist in America, so I’ll do my best.

4: I just think we should do this sort of thing more often. There are quality people in this industry. Sadly, the attention goes to the ones who stink. If people on social media were smarter about the fact that you should never comment on something you disagree with, people like Skip and Stephen A would lose their jobs much faster.

5: If you’re on this list, you should be honored because I genuinely believe 99% of this industry stinks. The layoffs are happening for a reason. It’s not because the Sports field is crumbling. It’s because a vast majority of the industry stinks.

*no particular order*

*links to Twitter account*

Paul Bissonnette (NHL) – Barstool Sports / TNT

Spittin’ Chiclets is the best hockey show out there and it’s not close. RA is great. I’m also a big Whit fan. Biz makes this show. He’s just a lightning rod at everything he touches.

I have great respect for weird brains. Biz comes off as an idiot (and even says stupid things sometimes). You can tell how much work he puts in on the breakdowns that he does for TNT and on the show. It’s great breakdowns and he’s hilarious.

I don’t watch every week but when the season is ramping up, I tune in. I don’t say this lightly but Biz is a much better version of Charles Barkley on the NHL side and I love Chuck. He gets me to a TV during the TNT pregame show and I don’t say that about any other show in any other sport.

Respect.

Stu Feiner (Gambling) – Barstool Sports

I don’t need to take long here. I watch Barstool Sports Advisors every week. Stu Feiner is one of the funniest people I’ve ever watched. I’m locked in every time. I don’t care what his gambling picks are. He’s hilarious and always has a method to his madness. It’s pure madness but you can’t script it either. Total character and an absolute legend.

Respect.

Michael Lombardi (NFL) – VSIN / DraftKings

Who knows if this is going to happen (even though I do believe one of these teams will hire me eventually) but if I ever get a GM job in the NFL, Michael Lombardi might be my first call.

You can say whatever you want about Michael Lombardi being a failed gm. That’s fine. He wouldn’t have been a failed gm if he had me by his side. Hell, the New England Patriots dynasty would have kept going. Josh Allen would have been the quarterback with Deebo Samuel, DK Metcalf, CeeDee Lamb, and George Pickens as his cast of wide receivers. Imagine that! What’s scary is I have proof that probably would have happened if I were in charge. Will happily take the Old Takes exposed rundown on our draft content vs. everybody else.

Speaking of the Draft, Lombardi was literally the only person in the media that I can remember that agreed with me on Mitch Trubisky. I’ve been following him periodically since and he’s always worth the watch. I don’t always agree with the guy but he knows what he’s talking about. His red chip, blue chip series is spot on minus some Patriots homerism. Really smart football mind who just spills knowledge that he learned from Bill Walsh, Al Davis, Bill Parcells, and Bill Belichick.

I’ll give you the perfect example as to why I love Lombardi. His show is called the GM Shuffle. It’s a great show and encourage you to watch it. On the latest episode, he had an opening monologue on Trey Lance that was just perfect. He uses this line a lot and I just yell at the computer “Amen” every time he says it. – “If I see it, I gotta say it”. Not enough people tell the truth in this industry and it’s pathetic. Lombardi tells you how he feels in an educated way every single time.

Respect.

Rob Mahoney (NBA) – The Ringer

This one won’t take long but that’s fine. He’s a much better writer than Showman, but that’s okay. The guy knows basketball and his blogs are always high quality. One of the few guys that talks about the NBA but is also never a fanboy either. One of the few that actually breaks down what’s actually happening and doesn’t need to convince you that his entire content wheel is trade machine.

Bill Simmons usually hires good writers despite the fact that he’s now too lazy to write. Mahoney is really good. If he worked for me he’d be pumping out way more content but we’ll take what we can get. It’s not Mahoney’s fault that Simmons doesn’t care about his blog anymore.

Respect.

Josh Pate (College Football) – 247 Sports

Don’t get me wrong; I like Joel Klatt. I especially like when he bullies Cowturd on a weekly basis during the CFB Season. I’m just saying though if this was similar to recruiting, I would attend Pate State. For the record, I’m just going to go ahead and let everyone know that I do think Danny Kanell is terrible.

I personally think that finding talented college football people is virtually impossible. Ditto for fantasy football. Pate is the perfect host that marries proper recruiting, coaching, and player analysis all into one show. Sometimes I think to myself that if I was born in the South, maybe I would be living his life. Except I can’t just solely focus on CFB.

Pate is a lunatic when it comes to this sport and that’s what sets him apart. I wish he were a bit meaner sometimes but you know what he’s trying to say without having to sound mean. Still, every time I turn on his show I usually learn something and that’s rare for me. He’s ahead of the curve on CFB and is a one-stop shop for everything you know about this sport. He’s smart and has valuable lessons from Meemaw that you don’t want to miss.

Respect. And respect on those guns too. That’s a guy that has some respectable pipes.

Joe Rogan (MMA) – UFC Commentator

You can say whatever you want about Joe Rogan. He is the best UFC commentator in the sport. Like I mentioned above with Pate, Rogan is a sicko when it comes to MMA in a good way. The guy loves it and he knows what he’s talking about. Can’t take it away from him.

I wrestled from the age of 6 to my first two years of college. It feels like I spent my whole life in a wrestling room. I still don’t think I’d be nearly as good at calling those UFC fights as Rogan. It feels like Cormier is even a step slow getting his words out compared to Rogan.

The guy makes every UFC fight card better. If he’s calling the fight, I’m more excited to watch the card. It’s hard to say that about a lot of broadcasters in any sport. Doc Emerick is really the only time I’ve felt that way about another broadcaster. It’s just a fact.

Respect.

Connor Rogers (NFL/MLB) – NBC Sports / SNY

I’m new on the train here. I don’t even follow the guy on Twitter but probably will as soon as I’m done writing this. I didn’t really know much about him until he started doing Matthew Berry’s fantasy show on NBC Sports.

I don’t love Matthew Berry. He’s a living legend in the fact that he’s the face of fantasy football but he’s not actually good at fantasy football. If Berry were in my league, he would be a consistent wildcard team fighting for the 5th or 6th seed to get into the playoffs. I mean, the guy did a mock draft the other day when he declared Amon Ra. St. Brown his ride or die, then took Stefon Diggs instead where St. Brown went with the next pick. I mean… WTF are we talking about?

His rankings are too cookie-cutter, he never goes out on a limb, his style is catered to uneducated loser one QB-snake draft people, and it’s painfully obvious that he knows nothing about college football outside of the occasional Texas A&M player.

With that said, Berry is above average, which should tell you how terrible the rest of the competition is in fantasy from a media perspective. Have you seen the product ESPN is putting out there without him? It’s uglier than a homeless guy on the side of the road that hasn’t showered in 20 years but is also missing a hand. It’s that bad.

I’ll be the first to admit; I like fantasy football and try to seek out content but most of it makes me want to stick a fork in my eye. Berry’s show is at least watchable so I tune in to some of his clips.

I haven’t seen much of an update on the Treylon Burks injury update, so I watched the clip Berry put out. I don’t know whose idea it was to hire Connor, but they deserve a raise. I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. Rogers started talking about Burks’ limited route tree in college and I almost fainted. Remember, that’s one of the reasons why I was kinda out on Burks heading into the draft.

I don’t think people understand how hard it is to find an NFL Draft person that actually understands talent. It’s why Todd McShay got dumped for a mediocre Bleacher Report writer. Rogers actually did that Burks segment like it was a walk in the park and knew what he was talking about. I was impressed.

Rogers makes Berry sound more educated on the rookies. As far as I’m concerned, that’s a guy that’s doing his job. I also may have to do more digging on this guy because there are times that he says things that I swear I’m the only one that ever notices. I always say that it takes talent to evaluate talent. The fact that SNY trusts him to host a show about the Mets in a totally different sport says a lot. It’s even rarer to find people who thrive in more than one sport.

Respect. And another guy that has a respectable arm day going. That’s what’s up.

Ryen Russillo (NFL/NBA) – The Ringer

I consider myself to be pretty transparent. I’m an open book. I’ve given Bill Simmons a hard time over the years. Mostly for giving himself a wrister five times a day by using the trade machine too much. The fact that Ryen Russillo is willing to work for him is the only reason why I still am willing to entertain the idea that he’s smart.

I am subscribed to The Ringer YouTube Channel. I stop by for the two Russillo clips every week. That’s it.

The thing I appreciate about Russillo is the fact that he doesn’t just react to everything. There are so many dumb people in this industry that open their mouths about nonsense that means nothing. Russillo always pauses and asks himself what each moment in sports actually means. He never makes the mistake that Twitter guy makes. That’s so important as we live in a Universe where Trey Lance is getting MVP bets to be the third string quarterback. As we live in a world where Justin Fields moves up three spots in fantasy because he completed a screen pass in a preseason game.

Russillo is wise. You can tell he reads and thinks a lot. The only thing I don’t like is the fact that it feels like he’s wasting his potential just doing one podcast. I don’t agree with everything that he says but he at least makes you think and that’s all you can really ask for.

Respect.

Frank Seravalli (NHL) – Daily Faceoff

I think Frank Seravalli is the best reporter in any sport. Fabrizio Ramano in soccer and Woj are the only ones who match up. Elliotte Friedman is really good too but Frank is quite literally carrying a network. Daily Faceoff is one of the best hockey resources out there.

Frank is the star of the show. He’s so tapped in and I trust basically every word he says in terms of reporting. Totally humble and never arrogant either. He’s also involved in talent acquisition there and he brings in some really smart people. His plan for building content is really smart too. His Live Streams are really well put together.

I think so highly of Frank that I would be willing to help him with fantasy content. If there is a way we could partner on fantasy stuff with them, I would strongly consider it.

Joel Sherman (MLB) – The New York Post

My favorite baseball read by a mile. Every time he drops a column, I click it. His style is unique in that he draws you in but also at the same time does a perfect flirt. He wants you to know that he has scoops but also wants you to know that it’s just an agenda that the team wants you to know. It’s never pushy and always informative.

I’ll tell you how good Sherman is. I hate the Yankees. He writes for the New York Post. I read all of his posts about the Yankees. That’s how good.

Josh Taylor (Steelers) – KDKA

We literally crafted our intern quiz around Josh Taylor. That’s how much respect I have for Josh.

If something notable happens with the Steelers, I usually check his feed. He’s a really smart guy that doesn’t just focus on the Steelers. He has the entire Pittsburgh market locked down. When I have more resources, I hope Josh accepts my offer to host a Steelers-centric show for our platform.

As I wrap things up here, I’d love to hear from you. Who deserves more respect in this industry? Is there anyone you would recommend that I need to pay more attention to? Is there anyone on our staff that you enjoy or hate reading? Hit the comments for that!

Consider this my list for 2024 too. We’ll see who emerges in 2025.

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