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August 9, 2007
'Daily Show' or local TV news: Part 10

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"The Sports Show," that wacky half-hour recap of sports news that airs after the late news Saturday nights on Channel 13, went poolside last week.

And now, the people who produce it are in troubled waters - with station management.

Seems hosts Gary Gelfand (left) and Arran Andersen (right) , along with their executive producer, thought it would be fun to stage a "pool party". And what naturally goes with that? Why, comely young women and beer, of course.

(Correction: We orginally reported that the "live shot" took place both in the pool and the hot tub. We have since confirmed that there was no hot tubbin'.)

Callers to Channel 13 - and a few e-mailers to your media correspondent - asked whether the bikini-clad models were of drinking age. As it turns out, station manager Bruno Cohen and news director Steve Charlier were asking the same thing.

"We investigated and, to our knowledge, there was not (underage drinking) going on," Charlier tells us.

However, the semi-salacious nature of the segment drew the ire of Charlier and Cohen.

"We had some conceptual and editorial problems with what was going on there," Cohen says. "It would surprise me greatly to see anything like that again."

The hosts and their executive producer have been told as much, Charlier confirms.

"It is something we’ve talked to our staff about," he says. "More than anything, we addressed what the content of that show should be and it’s sports. We’re the only sports show in the market that dedicates a half hour, and I think we do some good feature content on local athletes. That’s the type of content we want on there.

"I still don’t want a traditional sportscast, as I've said before. But we’ve got to be smart and focus on sports."

Postscript: This is what you get when you hire a sportscaster (Gelfand) who, on his station bio, lists Will Ferrell as his role model and his dream job as "Grip on a Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Calendar shoot." A tip of the beer stein to you, Gary.

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