Blog and Roll
With his handwritten notes at the ready, ten-time Golden Mike award winner Rich Marotta delivers daily his fast paced, articulate and always entertaining sports updates. Since 1991, as KFI's sports authority, Rich writes and broadcasts seven morning sports updates on Bill Handel.
Rich's input on Bill Handel is not limited to his much respected sports updates however as Rich is often called on by Bill to give his unique perspective on news and current events. Rich also takes every possible opportunity to mention how much he loves the music of Bruce Springsteen.
In 2011, Rich received the high honor of induction into two Halls of Fame. In January, he became only the 26th inductee into the Southern California Sportscasters Hall of Fame. Then in June, he was inducted into the California Boxing Hall of Fame.
Spending three years with the Los Angeles Kings, 11 years with the NFL's Los Angeles Raiders and four years with the NBA's Los Angeles Clippers makes Rich the only sportscaster ever to have been a part of the regular broadcast teams of three major league sports franchises in Los Angeles.
Rich is a four-time Emmy award winner for his television work on KCAL doing boxing ringside color commentary and Raiders preseason play-by-play. Also, as ringside commentator for FOX Sports Net's weekly Sunday Night Fights, KCAL's Fight Night and host of Rich Marotta's Neutral Corner boxing talk show on AM 570, he is considered one of the nation's foremost boxing experts. It is no wonder the L.A. Daily News called Rich Marotta "L.A.'s most versatile sportscaster."
Rich was recently named recipient of the Sam Taub Award, given annually to the "Broadcaster of the Year" by the Boxing Writers Association of America. Rich has two children, Angela and Joey. He is married to the lovely "Helen of England."
This blog may contain profanity and/or material considered inappropriate. The views expressed in this blog are the opinions of the individual writer and do not necessarily reflect the views of KFI AM-640 and Clear Channel Radio.
Back in 1990, I was at the Forum one day, and Magic Johnson was down there for the Lakers morning shootaround. I asked Magic if he would mind calling my son Joey at home and wishing him a Happy Birthday. Well Joey was at school, so Magic just left a wonderful, long message on the answering machine for a kid he did not know. Joey told his friends for weeks but then finally gave up because, as he said, "No one believes me." Point of the story though, thats the kind of guy Magic Johnson is.
I can't tell you how many nights after Laker games in the early 80's that some young sports reporters, myself, Big Joe McDonnell, and Steve Futterman, along with one quite old reporter Biff Elliott, would sit around Johnson's locker and talk with him. We would ask him questions and questions and questions until long after all the other players had departed. No matter how exhausted he was, he'd answer every one, even the dopey ones. Then he'd simply ask, "Is that it guys?", and since even we couldn't think of anything else, he'd get dressed. That's the kind of guy Magic Johnson is.
I can't lie. I'm as jazzed as everyone else about Magic Johnson's group becoming the new owner of the Los Angeles Dodgers. There's a great excitement and feeling in L.A. when the Dodgers are a strong team, and this was a huge step in that direction. Magic, the name itself just conjures up success and championships and smiles and laughs, and now hope once again for the Dodgers. I just don't see any down side to this ownership change. Taking Magic out of the equation for a moment, it gives the Dodgers a solid financial foundation with the extraordinarily successful Guggenheim Partners, plus a proven successful sports executive in Stan Kasten. Then you mix in Magic Johnson and you have the perfect storm. Magic is not a baseball man, but it's not going to matter.
Magic flat out gets it. He gets: 1) Winning, 2) Business, 3) PR, and most of all 4) L.A. The late, great owner of the Raiders Al Davis, who knows something about winning, once told me, "Magic dominates the concept of winning more than any athlete alive." He'll be talking to the players, infusing his own enthusiasm and winning attitude. He's already done that for the fans. I haven't heard this much positive talk and optimism and hope about the Dodgers in many, many years. The interesting thing is, the Dodgers, because of their financial situation, haven't been able to go out and really improve themselves this past off-season. That too will now change. They have money to operate and really compete. Magic has already said when there are important free-agents out there, the moment they become available, he'll be knocking on their doors, and when Magic Johnson comes knocking, that door is opened, and someone is listening. He has something to offer in the boardroom too because he is a very successful businessman. He knows how to connect with people. He's steeped in the community, and knows how to reach the different levels of Los Angeles. Sure he's got a lot of rich, famous friends, so sports and entertainment celebrities will once again find the Dodgers a hot ticket for them. Then there's the other side. Magic can help a charity, shoot some hoops with youngsters in the poorest communities, or call a kid he doesn't even know to wish him a happy birthday. What's not to like?