Radio Hall-of-Famer Chris “Mad Dog” Russo is notorious for botching names, with Elon Musk and Rihanna being his latest targets.
During Monday’s episode of his SiriusXM radio show Mad Dog Unleashed, Russo went on a rant about NFL commissioner Roger Goodell. Russo attempted to say Goodell can’t control the national anthem or the halftime show, but the NFL commissioner is able to improve the on-field product and its officiating, referring to the controversial holding penalty that was called late in Super Bowl LVII.
— Jimmy Traina (@JimmyTraina) February 14, 2023
“You think that’s what he wants this storyline to be? He can’t do anything about Rye-Anna,” Russo ranted before he was corrected by someone off-mic. “Whatever her name is, Rihanna. He can’t do anything about her.”
Less than 40 seconds after learning Rihanna’s name, Russo proceeded to fumble pronouncing the somewhat famous Elon Musk, who occasionally gets mentioned in the news cycle. Coming out of a commercial break during the Super Bowl broadcast on Fox, Musk was shown on camera seated next to Fox News founder Rupert Murdoch in a luxury suite.
Twitter's CEO hard at work as always. pic.twitter.com/v9nKABaK5r
— Awful Announcing (@awfulannouncing) February 13, 2023
“And Goodell, sitting in his little box with, what’s his name, Tusk?” Russo ranted before he was again corrected by someone off-mic. “Musk. And Murdoch, who’s 100 years old!”
Murdoch is 91 years old, to be clear. Botching Musk’s name is one thing, but Rihanna? Routinely mispronouncing names may be something that endears Russo to his sports radio fans, but Rihanna’s crew probably won’t be as forgiving. Did Russo learn nothing from his First Take counterpart Stephen A. Smith?
Last month, Smith was chastised on social media for sharing the opinion that he prefers Beyoncé over Rihanna, forcing the ESPN star to address the backlash from the back of a Sprinter van, only to later renege on that apology in one of his strangest controversies. But if Rihanna fans went after Stephen A. Smith for showing Beyoncé some love, they’re bound to attack Russo for giving their queen the “what’s her name” treatment.