Watchdog

Neil Best leaves no stone unturned in the world of sports media.

Brooklyn roots, Canadian sounds for Raptors analyst Jack Armstrong

TORONTO -- Jack Armstrong grew up in Brooklyn, attended Nazareth High School there and still retains the unmistakable sound of his home borough in his raspy, former coach’s voice.

But Saturday, the Fordham alumnus and former Niagara coach played an important role in getting Canadians riled up about the officiating in Game 1 of the Raptors’ series against the Nets.

During the telecast...

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ESPN to broadcast NFL playoff game

Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Marvin Jones makes a

(Credit: Getty)

ESPN will televise an NFL wild-card playoff game this coming season, the first postseason game in the league's modern era not to be shown nationally on a broadcast channel. The game will be simulcast on a broadcast outlet in the markets of the teams involved, the procedure followed for “Monday Night Football’’ on ESPN.

Sports Business Journal reported ESPN -- which already is paying the league...

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Met hoops writers to honor Ed Ingles

If you had asked Ed Ingles 10 or 15 years ago whether he took more satisfaction from his own long career in sports broadcasting or from those he has mentored, he likely would have said the former.

 “But that’s changed,’’ he said Wednesday. “I’m one person, but when you can make a difference with I don’t know how many people that’s bigger.

 “I’m going to leave here and probably...

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RIP, Zander Hollander

Zander Hollander is gone, along with an era in which people looked up sports facts in paperbacks, but he shan’t be forgotten – not as long as countless thousands of his books occupy space in basements, attics and dens across America.

At least they do in mine, for how can one part with volumes that convey so much information about games people played, primarily late in the 20th century?

Such...

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Michael Rapaport film recalls Knicks' glory days

Director Michael Rapaport and Knicks president Phil Jackson

(Credit: Getty Images / Ben Gabbe)

Phil Jackson was in the house Thursday for the premiere of “When the Garden Was Eden,’’ a documentary about the Knicks’ championship teams, but he did not stop to chat with reporters at the Tribeca Film Festival gala.

Fortunately the film’s director, Michael Rapaport, more than made up for that with a red carpet marathon in which he channeled the passion and frustration of fans – especially...

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Jeff Van Gundy responds to Howard Stern rebuke

ESPN NBA analyst and former Knicks coach Jeff

(Credit: AP, 2012)

Jeff Van Gundy was taking in a movie early this month when he received a text from a friend, who wrote, “Can you believe what Stern said about you?’’

“So I’m sitting in the theater saying, ‘Why would David Stern be talking about me now?’’ Van Gundy said of the recently retired NBA commissioner. “I was perplexed.’’

The ESPN analyst became even more perplexed when the friend filled him...

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NBC looks forward to NHL playoff 'hatred'

J.T. Miller of the Rangers collides with Tye

(Credit: Jim McIsaac)

Sam Flood, NBC Sports’ executive producer and a former hockey captain at Williams College, often has spoken of the benefits of “hatred’’ to televised hockey.

Monday he was at it again, saying of the 2014 NHL postseason matchups: “We think it’s going to add a whole new degree of hatred on ice . . . When there’s this kind of familiarity there is more energy.’’

Flood in part credited the...

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Rangers playoff tickets are high flyers

Montreal Canadiens' Travis Moen, left, celebrates a goal

(Credit: AP)

Tickets to the Flyers-Rangers series are averaging higher asking prices than those of any other first-round NHL playoff matchup, according to the secondary market site aggregator TiqIQ.com.

As of Monday, the average for the series was $292.24 – boosted by a whopping $429.50 for games at the Garden. Game 1 Thursday was averaging $337.66, with a low of $161.

The least expensive average...

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Golf Channel covers 'Arnie,' from tea to greens

Jack Nicklaus, left, and Arnold Palmer touch fists

(Credit: AP / David J. Phillip)

“Arnie,” a three-part series about guess-who that premieres on Golf Channel at 10 p.m. Sunday night, is an impressively ambitious undertaking that involved more than 100 interviews and a trove of cool video images.

Part I focuses on his childhood, his family life, his pioneering role in sports business and marketing, and his relationships with Jack Nicklaus and his fans. Part II gets down...

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Drake is wrapped up in Leafs

Rihanna and Drake, seen here in 2011, are

(Credit: Getty Images / Jeff Gross)

ESPN announced Wednesday that Drake will host the ESPYS this summer, making him the first black, Jewish, Canadian rapper ever to do so.

What Drake is not is the first avid hockey fan tabbed for the honor. Last year’s host, the actor Jon Hamm, is a St. Louis Blues supporter and said before the show the person he most would like to play in a movie is Gordie Howe.

Drake has taken Internet...

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