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Lou Pickney's Online Commentary

Lightning Crashes

Friday
April 30, 2004

The Tampa Bay Lightning will face the winner of the Philadelphia Flyers/Toronto Maple Leafs series in the Eastern Conference Finals. This is an exciting time for hockey fans here in Tampa, as the Lightning are four wins away from a first-ever Stanley Cup Finals berth. Good times.

Tony Parker
Tony Parker knocked Shaq and the Lakers out of the 2003 Playoffs.

Do you have any idea how much I want the San Antonio Spurs to beat the L.A. Lakers in their Western Conference semifinal series? My favorite team (the Spurs) against an ego-overloaded squad that's high on distraction. Plus Karl Malone is on the Lakers, and I hate Karl Malone (click here for the story on why I do.) As someone who defended Tony Parker very strongly last season when those Jason Kidd rumors were running rampant, I've been most pleased to see him raise his level of play to an even stronger level in the 2003-2004 season. Here's hoping for a San Antonio sweep of the Lakers.

I have a new favorite TV commercial right now... It's by Rolling Rock, and in the commercial the women only say the word "love" and the guys only say the word "sex" (until the end scene, where a guy at a bar within earshot of a hot chick says: "I'd love a Rolling Rock!") My description can't do it justice, but it's very well done.

It's been more than two months since my boss, Bubba The Love Sponge, was given the ax by Clear Channel. We've been very close to getting a new deal in place, and I'm hoping that this week we'll finally get it put over the top and lock it in. Patience is a tough thing to have sometimes.

I've been shown the numbers from the first Tampa ratings book since Bubba's departure from 98 Rock... and ouch, 98 Rock got shell-shocked. They combine three "phases" in continuously metered markets, which are released phase by phase. In the 12+ numbers (all individuals age 12 and up), 98 Rock had a 4.5 and a 4.3 in its first two phases. In the third phase -- the one without Bubba -- the station dropped to an incredibly low 0.8. Morning drive (Bubba's slot) free-fell from #1 across the board in men and adult demos to #6 for Adults 18-34 and #13 for Adults 25-54. This is the sort of thing that makes a radio station flips formats. And yet the FCC thinks it can demonstrate the community standards of Tampa with hard evidence like that showing otherwise? Please. And it's not an isolated case; similar situation have happened with Howard Stern's former stations in Miami and San Diego and Pittsburgh...


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