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Jeff Pearlman: Quincy Isaiah ‘Oozes Magic Johnson’ In HBO’s ‘Winning Time’

My wife and I would watch him and be like, ‘Is that Magic? No, that’s Quincy playing Magic.’ … It’s one of the best pieces of casting I’ve ever seen in any TV show.”

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Winning Time: The Rise of the Lakers Dynasty, the series about the “Showtime”-era Los Angeles Lakers, is set to premiere on HBO Max March 6.

The series is based on Jeff Pearlman’s 2014 book, Showtime: Magic, Kareem, Riley, and the Los Angeles Lakers Dynasty of the 1980s, and in anticipation and promotion of the Winning Time premiere, the author is currently making the rounds to talk about the adaptation of his book and his experience watching it become a TV production.

Pearlman appeared on The Rich Eisen Show last week and spoke highly of the casting to guest host Suzy Shuster. Actors like John C. Reilly, Jason Clarke, and Adrien Brody are highly accomplished, award-winning actors. So you’d expect Pearlman to say they’re great in this series.

But the great unknown before Winning Time debuts is the performance of Quincy Isaiah as Earvin “Magic” Johnson. It’s a key role since the Lakers drafting Magic in 1979 tipped off the “Showtime” era. How much Isaiah is featured has yet to be seen, but he’s shown prominently in trailers for the series and looks the part, so it seems safe to assume viewers will see a lot of him.

Pearlman was extremely impressed by Isaiah, not just from his performance but by his life story, and thinks viewers are going to feel the same way when they watch.

“You watch him and he just oozes Magic Johnson,” said Pearlman. “It’s uncanny. My wife and I would watch him and be like, ‘Is that Magic? No, that’s Quincy playing Magic.’ They nail it. They just nail it. It’s one of the best pieces of casting I’ve ever seen in any TV show ever. It just happens to be based on my book.”

Shuster teased Pearlman about naturally saying that everyone involved in Winning Time is great because the production is based on his book and he wants people to watch. Pearlman acknowledged that but said that if he didn’t think an actor’s performance was very good, he just wouldn’t say anything.

Winning Time: The Rise of the Lakers Dynasty, premieres on HBO Max Sunday, March 6.

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Andrew Fillipponi: Peter Burns Made ‘Innocuous Joke’ To Ben Watson

“So wait a minute? Because you believe in Jesus Christ you care about your wife more than other people? What are you talking about?”

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The on-air spat between SEC Network host Peter Burns and analyst Ben Watson continues to be bandied about in sports media circles, with 93.7 The Fan hosts Andrew Fillipponi and Chris Mueller discussing the topic Tuesday.

“I’m on Team Burns,” Fillipponi said.

“Forget who’s team you’re on,” Chris Mueller said. “I think you’ve do have to keep the wives and children out of this.”

“What are you talking about, keep the wives and out of it?!,” Fillipponi asked.

“Do we believe this is work or shoot here?,” Mueller wondered.

“Oh, I think this is real,” Fillpponi added, which Mueller agreed.

“Do you think a close fist from Ben Watson hit Peter Burns?,” Mueller asked.

“No, I think he picked him up by the lapels,” Fillipponi said.

When the subject of Watson’s religion was brought up, Fillipponi then pointed out the absurdity of the situation.

“So wait a minute? Because you believe in Jesus Christ you care about your wife more than other people? What are you talking about?”

“I think he might have a shorter fuse and not taking in humor that Peter Burns was giving out,” Mueller said.

“It was an innocuous joke!,” Fillipponi stated. “It wasn’t a joke! Why is it in bad taste?”

Mueller then added the idea of Watson’s wife texting Burns insinuates there’s an inappropriate relationship.

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Craig Carton: Booger McFarland’s Zach Wilson Analysis ‘An Embarrasment’

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Craig Carton

ESPN NFL analyst Booger McFarland raised eyebrows on Monday Night Countdown this week by saying New York Jets quarterback Zach Wilson has never been held accountable for his actions because he was a “young man who grew up with a lot of money”. WFAN afternoon host Craig Carton called out McFarland’s comments Tuesday as outlandish.

“It was an embarrasment,” Carton said. “Someone should ask Booger McFarland if his kids — who grew up with amazing wealth — have accountability in their lives or if having a little bit of money in your pocket immediately discounts the possibility to have accountability. He’s an idiot and we learned that last night.”

“It’s funny that Steve Young was on the other side of it,” Evan Roberts noted. “Because a long time ago, Steve Young criticized Chris Simms because he’s the son of a famous quarterback.”

“You don’t have to invent reasons for why Zach Wilson isn’t playing well,” added Carton. “Just watch his tape. He’s not playing well. Maybe he’s just not good!”

Carton later said NFL reporters “will try to make a name for themselves by putting out a story” about quarterbacks who take responsibility for their teams failures, while Wilson wouldn’t accept the blame.

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Greg Hill: Ben Watson, Peter Burns Drama Was A Bit

“Be careful when you’re talking about somebody’s wife and their kids. ‘Cause not everybody jokes the same way.”

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Peter Burns and Ben Watson shared an awkward exchange during the halftime show of an SEC Network football game over the weekend, and many are still debating whether Watson walking off the set was serious or not. Count part of the cast of The Greg Hill Show on WEEI as doubters.

“That was a a bit,” Courtney Cox said. “That was absolutely a bit.”

“Yeah, unlike the Chris Rock/Will Smith thing, I assume that was a bit,” Hill said. “I can’t believe that Ben Watson is really angry about that.”

“I dunno, man. There’s been a lot of speculation that it isn’t,” Jermaine Wiggins added. “There are people who are very sensitive about you clowning on them or joking with them. Especially with joking about their wife. Some people can’t handle jokes like that.”

After a back-and-forth with Cox about the legitimacy of the joke, Wiggins concluded by saying for some folks family is off limits.

“I’ve learned something in my 47 years on this Earth: be careful when you’re talking about somebody’s wife and their kids. ‘Cause not everybody jokes the same way.”

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