NBA Media Notes: '19-20 Season Will Be Last For Bulls TV Voice Funk
Longtime Bulls announcer Neil Funk said that he "intends to step down from his TV play-by-play post after this season." In Chicago, Phil Rosenthal notes Funk, who "broke in as an NBA announcer 43 years ago," is entering his 29th season with the Bulls. He will "work 52 of the Bulls' 82 games this season alongside analyst Stacey King on NBC Sports Chicago." The Bulls "plan to announce fill-ins for the 30 games Funk won't call this season at a later date." Funk is "hopeful he'll remain connected to the team or business in some way" (CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 10/3). The Bulls "plan to celebrate his career throughout the season" (CHICAGO SUN-TIMES, 10/3). NBC Sports Chicago’s David Kaplan said Funk has been a “magnificent play-by-play announcer” for the Bulls. NBC Sports Chicago's Jordan Bernfield: “You think about so many big calls in Bulls history that have his face on it. Total legend” (“SportsTalk Live,” NBC Sports Chicago, 10/2).
TURNER TIME: In Orlando, Roy Parry notes Stan Van Gundy, who was an analyst on ESPN last season, is "moving to TNT and NBA TV" this year. Van Gundy will "work as a game analyst for the 'NBA on TNT' Tuesday night coverage as well as provide NBA TV studio analysis during the season" (ORLANDO SENTINEL, 10/3). Meanwhile, in N.Y., Andrew Marchand notes Turner has "expanded the role" for Ian Eagle on Tuesdays, as he and Brian Anderson will be the "game-callers for its coverage." Marv Albert will "continue as Turner's No. 1 play-by-player on Thursdays." Kevin Harlan will also "do play-by-play on Thursdays." Eagle is the "current play-by-player who is closest to Albert in style and humor, while Harlan is the longest-tenured on TNT's NBA coverage." Anderson was "in line to eventually succeed Albert" under former Turner President David Levy, but with WarnerMedia Chair of News & Sports Jeff Zucker "now overseeing the department, the plan is to go through this year before figuring out what is next" (N.Y. POST, 10/3).
CHANGES IN THE BAY: In S.F., Scott Ostler notes Warriors announcers Tom Tolbert and Jim Barnett "will split" radio analyst duties this season alongside play-by-play voice Tim Roye. Tolbert will work home games, while Barnett will call road games (S.F. CHRONICLE, 10/3). The move means Barnett, 75, is taking on a "greatly reduced role with the team" as the "younger guard takes the lead." The Warriors are now in a "potentially delicate situation with Barnett if fans perceive this as a slap in the face" (San Jose MERCURY NEWS, 10/3). Meanwhile, Chris Mullin is "joining NBC Sports Bay Area as a pregame and postgame analyst for all 41" of the team's home games this season. Mullin was Warriors GM from '04-09 (S.F. CHRONICLE, 10/2).