Comcast SportsNet Announces Web, Broadcast Overhaul

Comcast SportsNet announced this morning the official hirings of Sean McAdam, Tom Curran, Art Martone, Sherrod Blakely and Joe Haggerty as they relaunch their website and partner on-air with NECN to provide broadcast and internet coverage of Boston sports.

CSN’s online presence at CSNNE.com will now feature the following lineup:

  • Veteran MLB reporter Sean McAdam will cover the Red Sox for Comcast SportsNet after 24 years with the Boston Herald and Providence Journal. McAdam is a member of the Baseball Writers of America and a Baseball Hall of Fame voter.
  • Veteran NFL reporter Tom Curran will cover the Patriots after serving with NBCSports.com, the Providence Journal and the MetroWest Daily News.
  • Sherrod Blakely, respected NBA reporter and Detroit Pistons beat writer for several Michigan newspapers and MLive.com, will cover the Celtics.
  • Joe Haggerty will cover the Bruins for Comcast SportsNet after covering the Bruins and Red Sox for WEEI.com, Boston Metro and the Woburn Daily Times.
  • Art Martone, sports editor at the Providence Journal for the past nine years, will serve as CSNNE.com sports editor.
  • Improper Bostonian sports editor and columnist Rich Levine will share humor and insight as a CSNNE.com columnist and editor.

For the website, Comcast SportsNet has also hired digital media veteran Bill Via as senior director of digital media. Via has been designing and implementing strategic digital campaigns since 1994 and has comprehensive television experience. Via has developed digital media strategies for A&E International, WGBH Boston, Telemundo and KHNL-TV in Honolulu, HI.

NECN sports personalities Mike Giardi and Chris Collins will now also join the Comcast SportsNet news team, alongside Michael Felger and Gary Tanguay, and recent additions Kevin Walsh, Carolyn Manno, Jessica Moran and Jackie Peper.

CSN will debut a new 30-minute program to air three times a night; SportsNet Central. The new show will start on December 3rd, at 6:00pm and will air each night at 6:00 p.m., 10:30 p.m. and 1:00 a.m.

In total Comcast SportsNet is creating more than 40 new local newsroom reporting and production positions and has constructed a new newsroom, added a new studio set and expanded its production facilities at the network’s Burlington, MA headquarters. Comcast SportsNet is consolidating the sports news operations of NECN into its Burlington facility and will serve as the exclusive source of sports news on NECN and NECN.com beginning on November 2. NECN will air encore presentations of SportsNet Central each day.

Related link:  NECN, SportsNet find way to share strengths (Globe)

CSN To Broadcast Wallace Press Conference Live Thursday at 4:00pm

The Celtics will hold at press conference  at 4:00pm on Thursday to officially introduce Rasheed Wallace as the newest member of the Boston Celtics.

Comcast SportsNet, the broadcast partner of the Celtics will carry the press conference live, and will stream it on CSNNE.com. Gary Tanguay will anchor coverage from CSN’s Celtics studios and Greg Dickerson will be on-site for post press conference reaction.

Following the press conference, Michael Felger and Tanguay will have full analysis and Dickerson will have an expected one-on-one with Wallace on Mohegan Sun Sports Tonight at 6:30 p.m. The Boston Globe’s (for now) Marc Spears will breakdown the signing on the Late Edition of Mohegan Sun Sports Tonight at 10 p.m.

CSN’s sister station under the Comcast umbrella, NECN will also stream the conference on their website, NECN.com.

Approval Ratings – Mike Giardi

Mike GiardiMike Giardi is the weekend sports anchor at NECN, and also hosts the weekend edition of Sports LateNight at the station. He is also a contributor to the Boston Score blog.

He is a native of Norwood, and received a Master’s Degree in Journalism from Boston University.

He began his broadcast career at WIVT-TV in Binghamton, New York. There he served as Sports Director and Lead Sports Anchor. He joined NECN in 2000 as a Sports Reporter.

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Mike Giardi Approval Ratings
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Approval Ratings – Laura Behnke

Laura BehnkeBehnke is another relative newcomer on the Boston sports media scene, having joined NECN as a sports reporter in 2005. She does on-the-scene sports reporting for the station, as well as filling in as sports anchor.

She has a  journalism degree from the University of Wisconsin, and grew up a Packers fan in Eagan, Minnesota (making her also a Twins fan).

She also hosts the weekly Celtics magazine show Celtics Now alongside Donny Marshall on Comcast SportsNet.

Here is an interview she did with David Laurila for RedSoxNation.net.

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Laura Behnke Approval Ratings
Total Votes: 794 Started: May 9, 2008 Back to Vote Screen

Approval Ratings – Chris Collins

Chris CollinsToday we’re rating NECN main sports anchor Chris Collins.

Collins is a native of Peabody, and is marking his 10th year at NECN. Prior to joining the station he had worked in stations in Louisiana and Milwaukee before coming back home to Massachusetts.

Collins serves as host of the nightly “Sports LateNight” on NECN. His bio at the station website lists among his accomplishments “exclusive live interviews with Nomar Garciaparra, Jason Varitek, Derek Lowe and Teddy Bruschi. He won national recognition for breaking the Notre Dame new head coach appointment story in 2001, and the Jeff Allison story in 2004.” (Note to NECN: an update might be in order for some of the bios on the site.)

Collins is an occasional guest or co-host on sports radio WEEI, though he hasn’t been heard on the station in some time.

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Chris Collins Approval Ratings
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