Courtesy John Fanta

Awful Announcing has learned that John Fanta, a national college basketball broadcaster and Fox Sports writer, will make his NBA regular season debut on Thursday.

Fanta will be on the call for Brooklyn Nets-Cleveland Cavaliers from Bercy Arena in Paris, France alongside Nets/YES analyst Sarah Kustok. The pair will call the NBA Paris Game from the NBA Studios, and the game will be broadcast on NBA TV.

Fanta, a Cleveland native who calls New Jersey his home, called it a “thrill” to get an NBA assignment at 28 years old. He’s become a prominent voice in the college basketball landscape and spoke with AA’s Michael Grant last year about the Big East, which might be the most fascinating conference in 2023-24. But Fanta will put college hoops aside Thursday as he lives out his passion.

“I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to call an NBA regular season game for the first time, and very grateful for those people who have given me the chance to live out this passion,” Fanta told Awful Announcing. “Sarah Kustok was my partner for the first men’s college basketball game that I did for Fox Sports, so it’s very fitting that she’s my partner for this first NBA game. Sarah is an outstanding broadcast analyst.”

It’s a significant moment for the broadcasting duo – and a full circle one at that — though Kustok has been a full-time analyst for the Nets since 2017. The fact that they have worked together previously suggests that they have pre-existing chemistry, which is undoubtedly an added advantage, particularly for a remote broadcast.

“Growing up in Cleveland with voices like the late Joe Tait, Tom Hamilton, Jim Donovan, and the late Fred McLeod, they inspired me with how much love they had for calling moments in the city. Now, living in the metropolitan area, I’m watching Nets and Knicks games often. It’s pretty cool and ironic that the two areas I’ve lived, now this debut NBA debut features the Cavaliers and Nets.

“Along this journey, you sit back and say, ‘Wow, I get to do this.’ That will never be lost on me. I’m pumped to bring the fans action of the best players in the world on Thursday.”

About Sam Neumann

Since the beginning of 2023, Sam has been a staff writer for Awful Announcing and The Comeback. A 2021 graduate of Temple University, Sam is a Charlotte native, who currently calls Greenville, South Carolina his home. He also has a love/hate relationship with the New York Mets and Jets.