Chris Carrino’s courage puts Kyrie Irving’s ‘load management’ to shame

Nets voice Chris Carrino for years has suffered from FSHD, but still sounds excited when Kyrie Irving actually deigns to suit up.

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Saturday was to be one of those nice, spring DVR days. Record everything on TV, grab my transistor radio — that trusty, rusty relic — and sit in the yard.

Nothing could bother me. I’d already had my angry moments trying to reseal one of those Ziploc bags.

First stop, WFAN, where the Nets were home against the Bulls — the friendly, relaxed good-listen team of Chris Carrino and Tim Capstraw. Perfect.

Early on, Carrino sounded pleased to report that Kyrie Irving had just scored. Then, after doing the quick math, my blood stewed angry.

Carrino, 51, for years has suffered mightily and increasingly from FSHD, Facioscapulohumeral Muscular Dystrophy. It steadily wastes away the body’s muscles and nerves, making standing and walking difficult, falling easy.

Carrino soldiers on. He doesn’t miss games, doesn’t call in sick or despondent. He travels by a hydraulics-equipped SUV that helps him load and unload his wheelchair and/or medical scooter.

Years ago, before a Nets’ game in the Meadowlands, I watched Carrino slowly and painfully ascend a mountain of stairs carrying broadcasting gear and game notes to reach his broadcasting position.

I didn’t know whether to applaud or cry. A matter of pity? Somewhat. But also a matter of jealousy. I could never be as courageous as Carrino, and grateful never to have had to take such a test.

The man is beyond brave. He’s uncomplaining, relentless, devoted to his craft and damned good at it.

Team, coach and fan-undermining star Kyrie Irving, since joining the Nets, has been portrayed with sympathy, sensitivity and even admiration for missing games because something or other bothers him, annoys him, causes him emotional and social distress.

And Saturday Carrino sounded pleased for Irving after he scored — a residual of Irving’s decision, on this day, to play basketball in exchange for $33.3 million in annual but seasonal pay.

I would never put Carrino in a position to answer such a question, but as his condition has become a colossal physical burden, I wonder what he thinks of NBA players missing games to “load management” to ease their physical burden.

Besides, he does his public speaking about FSHD at fundraisers for the Chris Carrino Foundation.

“Load management.” Imagine Chris Carrino dutifully reporting a player’s absence due to “load management.”

Grodin priceless treasure, even on sports

Don’t know how, why or when — he might’ve called about something I wrote about Pittsburgh, where he was raised — but Charles Grodin, the comedic actor who died this week at 86, became a good friend.

Grodin — “Chuck” — wasn’t so much an acquired taste as he was a required taste. His inscrutable presence, as often witnessed as a guest of Johnny Carson and David Letterman, was an exercise in the defensive assault. He reversed every Q and A.

He volunteered me to be on a radio show with him, an NPR program if I correctly recall. Why me? “In case he asks any sports questions.”

Well, he did, about boxing. Before I could answer, Grodin revealed he was the “Western Pennsylvania high school kick-boxing champion.”

The host was impressed. “What weight class?” he asked.

“All of them,” Grodin said.


Don’t look now, but Corey Kluber’s no-hitter Wednesday was pitched in total defiance of analytics.

Ya think if he’d allowed a double in the sixth inning he’d have been pulled after seven, the pre-scripted appearances of Chad Green then Aroldis Chapman to wishfully follow?

The same day as Kluber’s no-hitter, Padres starter Joe Musgrove was pulled after seven scoreless, two-hit, 11-strikeout innings. The predetermined eighth- then ninth-inning men would follow.

Corey Kluber was only a hit away from a predetermined Yankees finish.
AP

And who can forget when Casey Stengel yanked Don Larsen in Game 5 of the 1956 World Series rather than allow him to face the Dodgers for the third time through the lineup?


If we didn’t expect better, it couldn’t be worse. TV remains so driven by deceit that we by now should be conditioned to being suckered.

Saturday’s Preakness coverage on NBC withheld important info in order to hold its audience. “Minutes To Post” was ignored then, after the race, the payouts went missing — NBC even cut to commercials — until well after they’d been posted at Pimlico.

The next day, with the Stanley Cup playoffs beginning and no standard game-start times to rely upon, NBC was eager to let all know that Islanders-Penguins would begin at noon.

Got it? Noon. We were stuck having to believe it.

However, the game, as per NBC’s prior knowledge, began at 12:30.

I remain convinced that one reason Bob Costas stepped away from NBC is that he grew tired of being a center-stage party to the network’s dishonest productions and promotions — especially when he was expected to anchor Olympics coverage pitching “plausibly live” events that had ended many hours earlier.

Costas often tried to subvert NBC’s perfidy by reporting the scheduled starting times to the minute. And that included the scheduled first pitch of World Series games.

Kyle finally clubs his Cubs!

Those who know better are still habit-formed to suffer ESPN’s rotten grasp of sports. They’d substitute the chant of “DEE-fense!” with “CON-text!”

Kyle Schwarber watches his home run against the Cubs.
AP

Perhaps stat-deluded stat feeders were the last to know that after six years with the Cubs, Kyle Schwarber is now with the Nationals. Tuesday morning ESPN repeatedly scrolled that Schwarber on Monday “hit his first career home run vs. the Cubs.”

Did it matter that it came during his first career game against the Cubs? Not to ESPN.


WFAN’s Weekday Boomer Esiason, Monday morning: “Why does anyone feel the need to send out any tweets at all?” Agreed and amen!

As CBS’ Verne Lundquist said, “The most dangerous word in our language has become ‘Send.’ ”


The NFL again has sold its soul to TV. Check this season’s NFL schedule. What are presumed to be the least attractive matchups are scheduled for the most patron-friendly times, Sundays at 1 p.m.

And if any of those presumed “bad teams” show up as good teams, their games risk being “flexed” to late afternoons or prime time.

Yet, according to Roger Goodell, “PSLs are good investments.”


Nice take on YES from Michael Kay with Wednesday’s final out: “Corey Kluber becomes part of forever!”

SNY continues to produce and present clever promos that have the same thing in common: They’re not the least bit clever.

When to know when to switch the radio dial or just turn it off? When you hear, “When we get back, we’re going to break down last night’s game.”


From reader Louis Motola: “With Marv Albert’s retirement, my childhood officially ends at 64.”

This story originally appeared on: NyPost - Author:Phil Mushnick

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