Friday, June 6, 2008

Chris Berman Defends Chris Berman

Jay Posner gets the task of interviewing Chris Berman for the ESPN coverage of the US Open. Berman tries to defend himself amidst heavy criticism.

“First of all,” he said, “it's unfair because if you're on the air for six hours and heaven forbid I say, 'Ground control to David Toms,' you're writing it like I said it 500 times. Not the case.”
Maybe not that particular one. The count for that David Bowie reference (RUINING the song "Space Oddity") is at 389. Still, Berman interjects that kind of junk too often. But he claims that he is the everyman!
Said Berman: “It's unfair if people say I'm trying to make it my show. Then you haven't paid attention. Then you haven't done me fair. 'Cause I'm not. But I'm trying to be me and have a good time with it as someone who's an avid follower of the game; someone who's like most of the audience who are watching, a 16-handicap give or take, not a 3 (handicap) or a scratch."
I know people who play, who are more avid followers of the game than I am. I have NEVER heard any of them talk about golf in the same way as Berman. Never. So he is either interjecting his schtick into commentary, or he knows a whole different crop of golfers than I do.

Thankfully, though, Berman is open to taking criticism:
“It's the only way I know how to do it. There's a lot of ways to announce it; I'm just being me. I'm not trying to overdo it at all. If anyone thinks I come in to overdo it, you're not being fair and you're not listening.”
Is Augusta National being unfair by making darn sure that you were no where near their hallowed grounds during the Masters? Hmm?

You cannot fault the guy for his knowledge, though. He does bring that to the telecast in a way that is missing from Kelly Tilghman's commentary at times. It isn't all bad, but it certainly isn't all good. And I know no one that feels that it is all good.

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