Backing It In, Backing It In

That's Peterson on the left and Foley on the right. Not that it matters in radio.

Houston radio listeners got some

very good news

today: they only have to endure one more season of Gene Peterson and Jim Foley doing broadcasts of Houston Rocket games. After three decades, the pair is hanging it up after 2008.

Of course, everyone is supposed to be mourning the end of the road for these two beloved icons. Truth is, though, they made Rockets games unlistenable.

Being a homer in the NBA is a time-honored tradition (i.e, raspy-voiced Johnny Most of the Boston Celtics referring to Magic Johnson as “Crybaby,” as in “Crybaby gets the rebound”). But just because some teams do it doesn’t make it pleasant to listen to.

Peterson simply sucks, especially at this stage in his career, in giving basic play-by-play information. You’ll learn a lot, as a listener, about how the refs are ignoring a slew of obvious fouls being endured by the Rockets, or how opposing guards are traveling without being penalized, but when it comes to where the ball is, or what play is going on, you’re lost. You’ll get whining and opinions, but not too many facts.

As for Foley, he came from the Rockets’ PR department to the booth, so blasting the team has never been his style.

We realize it’s not the “classy” thing to do, pissing on someone at their retirement announcement, but unlike this pair, we have to call it like we see it.

And we fully expect the Rockets to replace Peterson and Foley with sharp, incisive, informative announcers who aren’t afraid to criticize. We’re guessing, though, that our expectations might not be met. – Richard Connelly

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