Stephen A. Smith let loose some rant about something today on SportsCenter. I tuned it out, as I do most things Stephen A. It involves Kobe and Phil Jackson and Stephen A knowing with EXTREME confidence what the obvious best thing to do would be. He seems to know a LOT about just about everything, but especially about his close personal friend Kobe Bryant.
While this isn’t anything new, what did make me do a double take was Stephen A calling out for a specific camera angle before he starts his scripted rant, calling out “Put the camera on me.”
I don’t think I’ve ever seen this before on ESPN or any studio show. I don’t know if it’s breaking a cardinal rule of broadcasting, but it’s quite unconventional to demand a certain camera angle while on the air given you know…….professionals who have extensive experience in this field typically handle these decisions on the fly with there rarely being a noticeable hiccup. I’m sure eventually the control room would have realized Stephen A was sinking his teeth yet again into something stupid yet again and would have given him the shot he wanted, but none the less Stephen A. was in no mood to chance it and wanted the rant in its entirety to be shown as a solo shot.
This isn’t a huge deal, but it does illustrate A) how scripted these rants are B) the significance Stephen A puts being showcased solo on camera when he’s ranting and C) just how much ESPN as a network is held hostage by his ranting.
I’d love to see more of this, but only from Tim Kurkjian or John Clayton.