Sports Media

JT the Brick to 95.7 made official, Guy Haberman leaves station


A few hours before Southern Nevada Tourism Infrastructure Committee voted unanimously to recommend raising the hotel tax in Las Vegas to raise $750 million in public funds for a new football stadium, Las Vegas resident and noted Raiders fan/employee John Tournour made an announcement of his own.

Tournour, otherwise known as JT the Brick, expressed his Raiders-to-Vegas thoughts to the Las Vegas Sun on Aug. 29.

Well, I want to start off by saying that I think they are a great fit in Oakland. I’m not here to bring the Raiders to Las Vegas. The majority of their fans are in Oakland, but because there don’t seem to be any more options left in Oakland and there are no negotiations ongoing and the government officials up there don’t seem to have any interest in making this a priority, I think Vegas is the perfect fit.

It’s a huge entertainment and travel destination, and I believe the city of Las Vegas would love to support a global brand like the Raiders. I don’t think the city could support every NFL team, but the Raiders are one of only four or five in the entire league that are well-known globally and have a global fan base, and Vegas is a global city.

Many Raiders fans have chosen to ignore the first part of what he said, and focus on the “Vegas is the perfect fit” quote. He’ll have to navigate those waters pretty carefully on 95.7 The Game, otherwise he’ll face some backlash. Although that could be exactly what he wants, seeing as he’s been performing on the radio for a long time after getting his start as a regular caller on Jim Rome’s show. When “Sound off like you got a pair!” is the catchphrase in your Twitter bio, you’re probably looking for as many bold, brash takes as possible.

However, he can just wait until later in the day to talk about how great the Vegas Raiders would be.

He’s also a Yankees fan, which should go over well with those who listen to the Athletics flagship station for A’s talk. But Tournour should have no problem keeping things local on non-Raiders topics if he wishes.

Here’s what he said a couple weeks ago about Colin Kaepernick on Fox Sports Radio:

“If you sit during the anthem, you’re nuts. OK? You’re nuts. I’m not going to hate you, I’m not going to mock you, I’m not going to make fun of you. I think you’re nuts. OK? You’re not the person in my backyard over the weekend, you’re not the person I’m going to dinner with, you’re not the person I’m texting going, ‘Hey, come over to my house.’ It is a line in the sand for me. I’ll respect your right to not do it, but you’re not in my clique and my crew. And I know I speak for most Americans when I say leave the anthem alone, leave the flag alone. Respect it, or get the hell out of here. Or if you’re going to stay and protest, be able to accept the consequences that come with this.

“And this is the final point. People would ask me all the time, ‘Why do you think this Brady thing is such a big deal?’ And I said it’s a lifestyle move. For the rest of Brady’s life … people are going to remind him that he was suspended by the NFL. He’s gonna have all those rings and all that money and the hot wife, Giselle, but people in the back of their minds are going to say ‘Brady was suspended.’ Brady doesn’t like that, that’s why he fought hard for that. For the rest of your life, if you sit for the anthem and people know about that publicly, that will stay with you forever. If you want to deal with those consequences, keep going at it and live your life and do it that way, but there are consequences to doing that and disrespecting the anthem.”

So, over the course of a few days, KGMZ got louder and older. The Brick (age 50) replaces a couple of guys in their early-30s from 10-to-noon, and today Guy Haberman announced he is also leaving the station, two days after John Middlekauff and Chad Doing were relieved of their duties.

We knew The Game would make an aggressive move or two at some point during program director Don Kollins’ tenure, and here we are. We’ll see if this is it for a while or if more changes are coming. I’m not sure what’s in store for Doing, who came here from Portland, but I would bet Haberman and Middlekauff will stay in the Bay Area.

Podcast, perhaps? Both are already frequent contributors on CSN Bay Area, and the demise of their sports-heavy show on 95.7 — which rarely veered into pop culture — has led to a pretty strong reaction (reminiscent of when Jason Barrett pulled the plug on “The Rise Guys”).

Middlekauff released his own statement yesterday:

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