Gillie & Wallo's Knockout Party | Replay Available Until 12/17BUY NOW

ESPN Audio BLOWS OUT In Wolves-Grizzlies Playoff Opener, And Stephen A. Smith Gets ROASTED For Trying to Fill In

Joe Murphy. Getty Images.

The Minnesota Timberwolves and Memphis Grizzlies play some of the fastest-paced, entertaining basketball you can ever hope to see, and in the midst of a high-scoring first quarter in which the Wolves snagged a 41-33 lead, ESPN's audio went from pristine to…


If you happened to be streaming this on the go, or blasting it on some sound system in the comfort of your own home, I am so, so very sorry for your misfortune. Just listen to that jack on loop. It's BAAAAAAD.

I accidentally just left the video on repeat while plugging in the first tweet for this article, and after four times through, I was already getting agitated. 

Then it went silent. Until…

The best part was ESPN desperately patching in to the studio, as Mike Greenberg and Stephen A. Smith, bless their souls, did their best to provide color commentary and play-by-play off the cuff. Not really their forte. I feel like Stephen A. can't debate his way out of a paper bag at his full-time job about any sport other than pro basketball, so you throw him something spontaneous in the moment, even in the league that is his wheelhouse, and it just doesn't go well. They should've just let Jalen Rose do the talking. I'm not a "YEAH BUT DID YOU EVER PLAY IN THE LEEEEEAGUE" guy when it comes to the ability to cover sports for a living, but Rose was clearly the go-to guy here, and he got sidelined to supporting duty as Mikey G. and Stephen A. stumbled through the proceedings.

In their defense — and not to just use this opportunity to bash Stephen A.'s poor debate skills, nothing against him just maybe hire better researchers to back up your arguments, etc.  — there was zero audio coming from the game, so even dead-ball whistles were difficult to discern. 

Anyway, here's just some of the reactions we got before the telecast audio was restored at the top of the second quarter.