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Cheers to WGR’s Simon and The Bucky and Sully Show

With the Bills not playing until 4:05 p.m. and time on my hands, I’ve decided to write a special Sunday edition of Sports on the Air.

Cheers to WGR-AM morning co-host Howard Simon, who Friday earned one of Channel 2’s Red Coats for asking Bills General Manager Buddy Nix the tough questions about Coach Chan Gailey and quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick.

Simon was persistent but respectful in asking Nix about Gailey’s job status during the GMs weekly appearance on the station that now carries Bills games.

It was the kind of performance that illustrated that WGR hasn’t become the Bills’ PR arm, except at night during the more positive John Murphy Show.

Of course, Simon didn’t knock the GM off of his support of the coach or the quarterback. Nix defended Gailey by accurately noting if the team had made one play in three games the Bills would be 8-5 instead of 5-8. That’s true. But they didn’t make the play.

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Simon also got Nix to concede the Bills would move up in the 2013 NFL draft to get a quarterback of the future. Unfortunately, the QBs coming out of college are so weak that Syracuse’s Ryan Nassib is now considered one of the better ones. I’ve seen most of Nassib’s games. He is smart, but prone to make more mistakes than Fitzpatrick.  

Cheers also to “The Bucky and Sully” show that is carried on the Buffalo News website. I tuned in Saturday to a replay of the program in which Buffalo News sports columnists Bucky Gleason and Jerry Sullivan debate issues and do interviews with local sports personalities. Basically, they compete to see who is the bigger wise guy. The closest thing to a local version of ESPN’s “Pardon the Interruption” with Tony Kornheiser and Michael Wilbon, “B & S” is very entertaining.

Gleason and Sullivan are friends who give it to each other pretty good for columns or opinions that have been off the mark. Gleason hit the hardest in the show I watched, criticizing Sullivan for being too soft on Gailey and Fitzpatrick. Sullivan did say on the show that he felt sorry for Gailey, but not sorry enough that he didn’t hesitate to call for him to be fired.

Meanwhile, Gleason – whose primarily job is covering hockey — might have startled fans by saying “I’m really starting to hate the NHL (during the lockout)… That’s probably counterproductive for what I do.”

“They hate you, too,” replied Sullivan.

I imagine “The Bucky and Sully Show” gets about as many viewers online as watch a local women’s college basketball game because of lack of awareness. The Buffalo News should consider buying time on a local TV station or Time Warner Cable to carry it a few times to drive awareness.

Listening to play-by-play man Mark Larson and analyst Danny Liedka during Syracuse’s 85-61 victory over Canisius Saturday night I had this thought: Can’t one of the best communications schools in America get a stronger team announcing their games on TWC? They may know SU basketball inside and out, but Larson and Liedka also may be the dullest pair of TV announcers doing college basketball games anywhere.

Studio analysts Doug Gottlieb and Seth Davis had a lively discussion Saturday afternoon on CBS about the football realignment insanity that has led to the destruction of the Big East and its incredible basketball history. Davis blasted the college presidents who have been behind the football money grab. Having covered the second Big East tournament final between SU and Villanova in 1981, I find the end of the Big East rivalries and SU’s move to the ACC extremely sad. By the way, Syracuse won the 1981 Big East tournament on its home court and didn’t get a NCAA tournament bid. Now the conference gets multiple bids annually.

What do Fox announcer Dick Stockton and Buddy Nix have in common? They are both in their eighth decade of life. Stockton, a SU grad who recently turned 70, is doing today’s Bills-Seattle game with analyst John Lynch and sideline reporter Jennifer Hale. His energy level on the NFL and NBA remains extremely high. Larson could learn something listening to Stockton.

As ESPN’s Mike Tirico indicated while seeing the emotional moment between Houston Coach Kevin McHale and Boston’s Kevin Garnett Friday night after the Rockets beat the Celtics, it was even more moving because of the day’s tragic events that day in Newtown, Conn. in which so many young children were murdered. Garnett, who was drafted by former Minnesota GM McHale out of high school, went over to the Rockets coach and exchanged a long hug that moved McHale to tears. The Rockets coach lost his 23-year-old daughter Sasha last month after a battle with lupus.


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1 response to "Cheers to WGR’s Simon and The Bucky and Sully Show"

  1. Larry says:

    I agree with Bucky and Sully we need more local sports. WBBZ should consider putting them on air or TWC and I have been thinking for years that TWC or another outlet should carry the Howard Simon show simulcast like the old Simoncast show back on the days on Empire.

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