Please please give us something other than ESPN in North America!

ESPN totally sucks. Gilbert, Patrick McEnroe, Chris Fowler, are some of the absolute worst announcers in the game. Mary Joe is too biased to the American players, although she is getting better than she once was. Mary Carillo used to be one of the best analysts in the game, and she is going downhill faster than Marion Jones. Cliff Drysdale is too bad these days to even describe. I so wish they had the USA today team, or the CBS team, where John seemed to bring out the witty and insightful side of Mary, which is sorely lacking on ESPN telecasts these days, and John without doubt is so vastly superior to his little brother, for more events.

West Coast Ace

I believe we're stuck with them - I believe they've locked up long term deals with the 3 Slams they cover.

Another reason to put down $1 on a Lotto ticket - I assume if you have the cash you can get satellite TV from anywhere in the world... - or you could at least fly to a country with good coverage. :)


I think Patrik Mcenroe is a great Commentador and Observer, one of the best in our sport. Some people are just never happy....
Grigollif1 said:
I think Patrik Mcenroe is a great Commentador and Observer, one of the best in our sport. Some people are just never happy....

Patrick??? He is the pits of the pits. His older brother outshines him as far in the booth as he did on the court. Anyway you are entitled your opinion. I hope there are a good portion who like him as much as you and dont deliberate whether to use the mute button and miss the crowd noise of the game when he is yapping it up in the booth.

West Coast Ace

Grigollif1 said:
I think Patrik Mcenroe is a great Commentador and Observer, one of the best in our sport. Some people are just never happy....
Patrick occasionally makes intelligent comments but lost his credibility with his repeated *ss smooching of those he hoped would play Davis Cup. And considering who he's surrounded by, it's not hard to sound smart.

I like Gilbert (most of the time) and if Luke Jensen would tone it down a little he'd be good too. And I give Cliff a pass because he used to be good when he was younger and his mind was still sharp - although I wish he'd retire. The rest should be reassigned to the Spelling Bee and Women's College Basketball coverage.


Patrick McEnroe, ah...


"That was...NICE!"



"Did ya get a look at that one, Cliff?"


"And then there's Nadal..."

Just to name a few 8)


"He's probing. Are you kidding me?! Racquet head speed's amazing!" Slobbering Pat Witless.
"Genius, high class, man of integrity. Modest Federer!"

Drysdale shouts, "Federer has great confidence. No arrogance."
"Ljubicic's a nice, unpretentious guy!"


You obviously haven't watched foreign coverage of a Slam before if your calling for the ouster of ESPN!!!!!! We are spoiled - I agree about P-Mac but remember him 2 yrs ago = Roddick this -- Roddick that - he has toned it down. ESPN had the best coverage of the Aussie Open since I began watching it in 1987!!!!!! Either your unaware of the past - which is scary or your ignorant of the present which is just as bad.


Brad Gilbert may have a good tennis mind, but he can not speak a few sentences without fumbling for words. Also, he comes off as a bit uncultured. But the fellow with him, Chris is it, is really bad. He is quick on trash talking or high praise even before information is fully known.

I am still getting used to the coverage cutting back to them for an expert commentary by Brad after each set. Brad does not have much to offer most of the times.

But I will have to give to Brad during the Men's finals. After set 2, they cut to Brad and he said, Federer will win the next two 6-1, 6-1. I also felt that the momentum has turned in Federer's favor but it was still a bold prediction. He called it right, pretty much.


Gilbert's a bandwagon jumper. He dismissed Nadal in 2003 as a claycourter with not much game. This year, he called Nadal his favorite player.
He wants to hear himself talk. What is there to lose? He was paid millions of dollars for doing very little. He made up his mind that Acasuso had a weak backhand and poor serve. He also proudly said, "James Blake moves well on clay."
He told Roddick to serve as hard as possible--at least 160 mph. What kind of CRAP is that?


New User
I've watched coverage of the same match from different Broadcasting networks. (they were on DVD)

ESPN's analysis of matches tend to be more flashier. Other stations like STAR SPORTS are just "oh look, that was a good shot!" and still can't pronounce the last name of European players. EURO SPORT has some good commentators, but they do FAR less talking than ESPN; I find it great if you want to just watch tennis and not listen to PMAC yell emphatically 'THA DROPPPPAA'


Here’s my $0.02.

Chris Fowler-
Great voice and play-by-play commentating. Speaks his own mind and doesn’t always agree with the experts. Is not afraid to challenge them nor the officiating and he’s not afraid to bash a player at times. Fowler’s learned so much about the game in such a short span (even compared to last year for example)
Definitely a keeper.

Brad Gilbert-
Yes, he is unorthodox in his speech mannerisms but a mastermind of the game. As somebody else mentioned, nobody is better than BG is explaining the terms of the tennis to the general sports fan. He is exciting and unpredictable. The viewer has no idea what what to expect from him on any given day and that is a gift itself.
Another keeper.

He is conservative and uses caution in his selection of words. This guy reminds you of your best friend in high school, always willing to share his knowledge and help your game. A student, not only from his famed brother Jmac but from the game. Pmac is someone who does his homework and prepared to translate that information to the viewer in short and concise text.
Should stick around.

Mary Carillo-
Deep and soft-spoken, has much to offer to the viewer in words. Although her vocab may be impressive at times, she carries a flair of arrogance that’s not always appreciated. Great knowledge of women’s tennis and history. An asset for ESPN.

Mary Joe Fernandez-
Was a good player, not a great one. Often is found searching for proper words. She needs more seasoning and to find a way to liven up her voice.
Pink slip.

Cliff Drysdale-
Can’t stand him. Has no reluctance to embarrass the network by arguing with the experts, BG and Pmac, and in the process himself as well. His accent does not fit in with the western ones that surround him. Needs to talk less between points and let the experts analyze and dissect previous points. However, great potential.
Yellow slip.

Dick Enberg-
Aside from his memory and slip-ups, a legend.

Geezer Guy

Hall of Fame
AND, I thought this years coverage of the Aus Open was better than in the past. Sure, the did show repeat matches from time to time, but not as much as past years. They also seemed more willing to break away from a lopsided match with a big names to show an exciting match between guys we'd never heard of. They stayed with matches after their coverage was SUPPOSED to end to show the end of matches in progress. And - holy cow - they even showed a DOUBLES match for crying out loud!


Check Steve Tignor's articles (in which contain his view on espn coverage.

I agree with his comments such as
"ESPN wastes time with studio chatter and doesn’t skip around as much as a tennis fan would like."
"What’s more grating are the continued attempts to “build the personalities” of the top players. This translates into time-killing analysis by Chris Fowler and a gossip columnist, and postmatch interviews with every American, even after they’ve just demolished an early round opponent."

I wish they give up wasting time with the booth "anaylsis". Just show the damn matches!

I think Mary Carillo and Cliff Drysdale are ok. I can't believe that I would say this but P Mac is getting better comparing to others.


Chris Follower: greasy voice which fits well with infomercials (for quick money making scheme or hair loss treatment?). Too biased to call the play by play and too eager to make up a controversy. When the player he's rooting for is losing, in his eyes, the opponent always seems to using a sort of gamesmanship. He thinks he knows better than he actually does.
He thinks tennis is football or baseball, please somebody tell him that he does not have to repeat everything player does. It's not radio!
Maybe he will get better (except for his voice), but right now there's no light and he's getting worse due to his false confidence. Somebody should put him in the proper place. The worst thing is that he doesn't seem to go anywhere. It's sad because tennis should/can do better.

Brad Gilbert: Hope he gets better, for at least he knows a thing or two about tennis. I don't like his self promotion as a coach and also as a commentator. He talks as if everything he says is something deep or something funny. Too overtly jingoistic and quite like Follower he never fails to find something fishy and bad in the opponents of the players for whom he's pulling (yeah,.. maybe not about Federer?). Hope he breaks such a habbit on TV. (couldn't care less about when he's not talking on TV)
Well, for nothing else, it's not "good for the game".
In a way P Mac was similar in terms of player bashing, he got a little better at restraining and balancing. So maybe there's hope with Gilbert in that respect.

Mary Joe Fernandez: again there seems to be a pattern of bias which is not just from jingoism. I hope she at least try to hide personal agenda a little bit and not to kiss up the "customers" too much and not to jump on the "enemy" players every chance she gets.

pound cat

devila said:
"He's probing. Are you kidding me?! Racquet head speed's amazing!" Slobbering Pat Witless.
"Genius, high class, man of integrity. Modest Federer!"

Drysdale shouts, "Federer has great confidence. No arrogance."
"Ljubicic's a nice, unpretentious guy!"

Drysdale: Safin looks as if he should be working for the KGB

Kaptain Karl

Hall Of Fame
Good solid keepers:
Patrick McEnroe - Really knows and loves the game ... which "communicates" to the average fan. Regularly has "scoops" on training methods, and scouting reports ... demonstrating he is still a "court rat." (I even like his hokey "Hello!" and "Droppa!" stuff.)
Mary Carillo - Obvious that she ... knows the game and the players ... has great Locker Room scoops ... loves the game. (She seems to be chattering less. Thank you!) The timbre of her voice is admittedly "manly" but -- speaking from a Technical perspective -- her diction and clarity is excellent.
Luke Jensen - Last year I couldn't stand him. This year he's *way* better. His Court.side Insights were really well done in OZ. And I thought his enthusiasm from the Booth, during the Dubs Final, was terrific. (Even if Bob Bryan *did* wait until the 3rd Set to swing his Lefty serve wide in the Ad court, on Damm, like Luke kept "coaching"....) Luke has managed to "tone down" his exuberance. He's gonna be good....

On "KK's bubble":
Mary Jo Fernandez - She'll have good tourneys ... and bad. Tends to "dither" too much. I'd rather have silence than her "fill".
Cliff Drysdale - Really talks too much. Used to be better, before he lost his appreciation of letting the camera do the talking. He still *does* have his good weeks, though.

Give 'em the Axe!!!:
Dick Enberg - (It was cool to see him in the Stands on an off day in OZ. He seems to really be a "fan".) A really nice guy, but he's done. I'm tired of him too often getting Game and Set scores wrong, and forgetting which name goes with whom on the court.
Tim Ryan - Waste of film and tape.
Chris Fowler - He still "tries too hard," which merely highlights his lack of knowledge of the game.
Brad Gilbert - His analogies are too long, involved and inane. I'm sick of his self-promotion. He cannot give *brief* commentary fromt the Booth. ** If he'd agree to only do those Court.side Insights, I'd say "Keep him." He's *able* to do pithy commentary from the Sidelines; for some reason, he seems to think being in the Booth is a license to blather. **

- KK


Hall of Fame
I don't give a hoot who is in the booth . . . as long as we get to see some matches on the television. More matches . . . more doubles, please!