Going Home Again: Spero Dedes Drops Lakers' Radio Gig To Call Knicks Games
Spero Dedes has agreed to call Knicks games for ESPN Radio 1050 N.Y. after spending the past six seasons as the "radio voice of the Lakers," according to Bob Raissman of the N.Y. DAILY NEWS. Dedes, who worked for YES Network before landing with the Lakers, will replace Mike Crispino as the Knicks' play-by-play radio announcer. Dedes "became available three weeks ago when the Lakers were on their way to shaking up their TV booth." An MSG Network source said that Dedes "will also work some TV games on MSG" (N.Y. DAILY NEWS, 6/22). Lakers PR Dir John Black indicated that Dedes, "who was supposed to move over from Lakers radio play-by-play to replace Joel Meyers on television, decided against taking the job after giving the Lakers a 'verbal agreement.'" Black: "Spero had a change of heart." In L.A., Broderick Turner reports the Lakers subsequently announced that Bill Macdonald and John Ireland "will be the play-by-play announcers for the team" for the '11-12 season. Macdonald will call the games on TV, alongside Stu Lantz, while Ireland will call games on ESPN Radio 710 L.A. alongside Mychal Thompson (L.A. TIMES, 6/22).
CHANGING SIGNALS: Dedes has called NFL and NCAA basketball games for CBS in recent years, and in L.A., Tom Hoffarth reports Dedes and his agent, IMG's Sandy Montag, "had been trying to negotiate a deal with the Lakers for the past two months that would allow Dedes to take some games off for network assignments." However, the Lakers "were not willing to accept those terms" (L.A. DAILY NEWS, 6/22). Black in an e-mail said, "We allowed Spero to miss several Lakers games from time to time over the past few years in order to do national events for the NFL and college basketball. However, for our TV play-by-play position, we insist that that person not miss any games because we feel it is important to our fans to have consistency and continuity and to have the same announcer for all games (ESPNLA.com, 6/21).