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scrabbleship last won the day on June 16 2021

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News Director (7/8)



  1. To replace Kevin Hogan? Maybe. The station has enough young talent that are probably anchor ready that it might be good to take a chance on them. WFSB management has been high on Ayah Galal and if memory serves me right she'd be the first regular anchor of a local newscast anywhere in the US who wears a hijab. To replace the second weeknight anchor pair that has been vacant since Erin Connolly and Mark Zinni defaulted into the A team after Denise D'Ascenzo died and Dennis House was cast off? Perhaps. I don't think the sentiment is that Gray is too cheap, is that a lot of the people who were there when Denise/Dennis were would see being in that spot as de facto replacing them and they left some pretty shoes to fill even if both have been vacant for two years. I think the Stephanie Simoni hire is a backdoor way to fill the Denise hole - she started on a new newscast so an expansion might not be seen as directly replacing her. Whether the obvious move (pairing her with her husband Roger Susanin who IMO should've been made the second weeknight anchor 18 months ago) will be done remains to be seen.
  2. A couple of Connecticut moves that flew under the radar. First, former WFSB/WTIC traffic reporter Rachel Lutzker has resurfaced at WTNH to do the zombified CT Style segment that closes out their noon news. Second is a bit bigger. WFSB weekend evening anchor/New London Bureau chief Kevin Hogan is retiring at the end of this month, already having gone off the anchor desk effective last weekend. This caps a 50 year career split nearly evenly between radio and TV. Given how WFSB still technically has two BIG vacancies on weeknights dating back to prior ownership (and a base of prospective anchors who might not want those spots given the implied shoes they'd be filling), it'll be interesting to see who they get to do weekend evenings if they decide to find someone even.
  3. Better is a dead property, the last full-on show with that name - WFSB's Better Connecticut - rebranded as Great Day Connecticut last September in advance of the split of Meredith as a company. The Better-branded segments on the morning and noon editions of Western Mass News at WGGB ended around the same time as well. In the case of Connecticut, the show needed a refresh due to the circumstances of its last couple of years as Better between being cut to a half hour, going on hiatus for six months because of COVID, and returning to its old timeslot without the same vibe it had prior. Of all the Better series it probably was the most successful because it didn't end up delving down the pay-for-play road though with current news talent hosting it it's a slippery slope.
  4. A change in Hartford, as WTNH's Steph Simoni is heading up I-91 to join WFSB where she'll solo-anchor a new 7:00 newscast starting 5/2.
  5. TV Passport has WSHM airing DailyMailTV at 7:30, a case of obvious filler as that has been axed too. WFSB doesn't need more newscasts. They need a B anchor team to replace the one that became the A team by default. I know Gray can be cheap but this has persisted for way too long.
  6. The fun thing here is that Cox is in the process of buying KLSR in Eugene and that now sticks out like a sore thumb with Medford/Tri-Cities/Spokane cast aside.
  7. Another day, another departure from WNYT. Jerry Gretzinger, who anchored the 4:00/4:30/6:00 newscasts, will be leaving the station as of March 11th after 4.5 years. Gretzinger is the tenth on-air personality to have left WNYT since December 2020, on top of longtime GM Steve Baboulis and several longtime photogs, and is the second departure this year after reporter/fill-in anchor Jacquie Slater left the business in January.
  8. If it was about retrans it would've been easier to make KPVI or KYMA be the fall guy to be honest.
  9. When Emmis had KHON and KGMB in Hawaii, their newsrooms were kept separate. Doesn't Sinclair have a degree of separation between WOAI and KABB in San Antonio as well? Though not a true duopoly the same could be said if WEAR and WPMI if anything for the geographical quirks of that market.
  10. Has anyone tried a sidecar approach in a market that large?
  11. Oz moved to WCTX this past September, an upgrade considering that WFSB had pushed Oz to overnights post-Corden for 2020-21 after Sony gave them the okay to do so.
  12. The FCC seems content with an obsolete and broken status quo regarding E/I and Hearst has a practical Industrial Complex to keep it alive because without it they'd be hosed.
  13. The anchor changes at WNYT weren't the biggest news to come out of there today. Steve Baboulis, GM since 1996 and an employee of the station since 1977, is retiring. Steve is much of why WNYT went from also-ran to powerhouse and while his "it worked I the 90s" attitude has been a little detrimental as of late, this is a huge loss for a station that's had a rough year personnel wise.
  14. May this Louisville hire work better than the last (ex-WHAS'er Paulina Bucka who left after only four months).
  15. WTZA didn't fail because people preferred the NYC and/or Albany stations, WTZA failed because the original owner (a noted regional developer) was in a money bind and had to sell the station and the Frenches were the first to buy. Unfortunately the Frenches had delusions of grandeur and wanted their local CNN wannabe even before purging all the syndication. RNN even worked until they bit off way more then they could chew. Had they focused on the Hudson Valley and maybe made some inroads in relevant areas (Fairfield County and full carriage in Westchester/Rockland), they could've easily have become the Hudson Valley's WFMZ. But the Frenches never have been happy or satisfied with anything ever. It makes me wonder what would've happened had they ended up with the WFAS radio stations that they wanted to buy.
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