8 a.m. update:
As we first reported a couple weeks ago, ESPN is moving Dan Le Batard's show to Colin Cowherd's previous time slot (10 a.m. to 1 p.m.). Le Batard and Jon Weiner (Stugotz) also will do a live local hour from 9 to 10 a.m. and 790 The Ticket will air highlights of his morning program --- a "best of" type show --- from 3 to 4 p.m.
Here's how ESPN plans to announce it, according to source:
"On Tuesday, Sept. 8, The Dan Le Batard Show will move to 10 a.m. ET – its new time on ESPN Radio. The three-hour national show will continue to be co-hosted by Le Batard and Jon “Stugotz” Weiner and will remain based in Miami. The one-hour local show will now be broadcast from 9-10 a.m. in Miami."Le Batard will continue to offer provocative opinion and conversation to ESPN Radio’s national audience through a lineup of well-known guests, humor and reaction to the day’s news. The show will also continue to feature a lineup of regular contributors including John Amaechi, Greg Cote, Amin El Hassan, Sarah Spain and Pablo Torre."We continue to be flattered and flabbergasted by the amount of unrelenting support ESPN gives our absurd little circus,” Le Batard said. (My interjection: Dan has a lot more to say to us, which we'll post in our media column later.)"Traug Keller, ESPN senior vice president, production business divisions, added “Dan and Stugotz have cultivated a passionate following who expect cutting-edge and entertaining sports talk radio. They will not be disappointed with the time change and a new audience will now have the opportunity to experience this unique blend of make-you-think commentary and humor.”"The three-hour national show will be heard on ESPN Radio, espnradio.com, the ESPN app and SiriusXM Channel 80. ESPNU will simulcast the show. FUSION will continue to televise the show in its entirety, tape delayed at 1 p.m."Le Batard will continue to host ESPN’s Highly Questionable weekday afternoons at 4 p.m., along with his father Gonzalo “Papi” Le Batard and Bomani Jones."Stugotz will also co-host Fantasy Focus, debuting Sunday, Sept. 6, at 9 a.m. on ESPN Radio. The weekly four-hour show will be co-hosted by ESPN New York 98.7FM’s Dave Rothenberg and Eric Karabell. The program will prepare listeners for the day in fantasy football with last-minute lineup suggestions, injury updates and analysis of who is having the best season at each position."In 2013, Le Batard brought his local radio show – heard on The Ticket in Miami since 2004 – to ESPN Radio’s national audience from 4 – 7 p.m. Le Batard joined ESPN The Magazine’s staff as a contributor in February 1998.
"Le Batard continues as a columnist at the Miami Herald, where he has been since 1990. His work also appears regularly on ESPN.com. An accomplished writer, he has won several Associated Press Sports Editor (APSE) awards. Le Batard also has written for numerous national publications, including Maxim andCosmopolitan. A 1990 graduate of the University of Miami, Le Batard received a bachelor of arts degree in journalism and politics.
"Jon “Stugotz” Weiner has served as co-host of The Dan Le Batard Show since 2004. A sports broadcasting veteran of more than 15 years, Stugotz provides his own passionate takes on the sports news of the day, often the opposite of Le Batard’s opinion, and is known for his self-deprecating humor. Stugotz received his bachelor’s degree in English and communications from Clark University in 1995."### Josh Friedman and Chris Wittyngham have emerged as strong candidates to fill Le Batard's slot in late afternoons, though others also remain under consideration. [10 a.m. UPDATE: Friedman and Wittyngham will host from 4 to 7 p.m. beginning Tuesday. The station says they will hold that slot "for now," and that it has made no final decision on permanent hosts in afternoon drive].The station initially expressed strong interest in having Ethan Skolnick and Israel Gutierrez fill that slot but backed off that and decided to consider other options after more people became involved in the decision-making process. Skolnick and Gutierrez haven't been ruled out, however.### Station GM Doug Abernathy said Jonathan Zaslow and Joy Taylor's morning show will start 30 minutes earlier (5:30 a.m.) because they're losing the last hour of their show to Le Batard.### Eric Reed and Leroy Hoard remain hosts from 1 to 3 p.m.Please check back here later today for a lot more on Le Batard's move and more local media news, including a surprising dismissal.########################################################################
A six-pack of items on a Wednesday:
### After getting a feel for Justise Winslow’s unique skill set during NBA Summer League, the Heat coaching staff is concocting creative ways to use its first-round draft choice.
“It’s going to be good. The way they’re using me I think is going to be really special, really going to help me showcase a lot of my skills,” Winslow said Wednesday at a team event at Carnival Corp. headquarters in Doral.
During Summer League, the 6-6 Winslow displayed defensive acumen, deft ball-handling skills and an ability to beat his man off the dribble. Winslow said he believes coach Erik Spoelstra will entrust him with some ball-handling duties.
“If not playing a lot of point, then playing a lot with the ball in my hands,” he said. “If I’m with the first or second unit, ball screens at the top of the key, a lot what I did in Summer League.”
His jump shot needed work, and Winslow committed himself to improving it this summer, both inside and outside the three-point line.
He said coaches have tinkered a bit with the technique on his jumper but “there haven’t been any major changes. Just trying to become more consistent with the shot.
“I definitely feel comfortable shooting from three-point range but it’s working on everything – pull-ups, mid-range, posting up, finishing. There has been a huge emphasis on my shooting mechanics, trying to get everything more fluid and more natural so I can become a better three-point shooter. But there hasn’t been an over-emphasis on three-point shooting.”
Winslow shot 48.6 percent overall and 41.8 percent on threes at Duke, but the three-point line is a shorter distance in college.
Those numbers slipped dramatically in a limited sample size in Summer League, with Winslow closing at 34 percent from the field (14 for 41) and 3 for 12 on threes.
In the wake of a strong performance in Orlando (11.5 points, 2.3 rebounds, 2.0 assists in 25 minutes per game), a sprained ankle and “general soreness” limited Winslow’s availability during the Las Vegas portion of Summer League. Combined with an excused absence to attend the ESPYs, Winslow logged just 22 minutes in Las Vegas, sitting out three of the Heat's five games there.
But Winslow said he has worked past those physical ailments that hampered him in July.
“I took some time off,” he said. “Really just strengthened my body so I can last a full season. No injuries. Just working on all aspects of my job – take care of myself, eat better, trying to get better as a player.”
Though Winslow can play small forward or shooting guard, and even could be cast as a primary ball-handler at times, the Heat doesn’t want to pigeonhole him into a position.
“The Heat is a pretty positionless organization,” he said. “The offense, all the positions are pretty interchangeable. I’m working on all my skills. Just playing alongside other great players, some of the things will be limited.
"Just trying to find spots where if I’m in a game with [Dwyane] Wade, [Goran] Dragic and [Chris] Bosh, where I can be most efficient. I don’t know what I’ll be playing more of --- [shooting guard, small forward or point guard].”
Winslow, whose summer preparations have included both on-court work and film work, said securing a rotation spot is important to him.
He spent time bonding with Heat veterans in Los Angeles last week, a group that also included Wade, Bosh, Mario Chalmers, Gerald Green, Udonis Haslem, James Ennis and Josh McRoberts.
"It was fun being out there,” Winslow said. “A lot of what we did wasn’t even on the basketball court. But the work on the court was great. Just some basic drills, getting to know the guys.
“Just being around each other was probably the biggest takeaway, not even the on-the-court stuff. Starting to build a chemistry. Just going in every day and seeing some of the guys, I feel like the relationship is growing.”
At 220 pounds, Winslow said he doesn’t want “to put on too much weight on so I can still move. It’s not necessarily about building a lot of muscle, bulking up, but just getting stronger. A lot of times, I can be getting stronger but not necessarily bigger. For me, it’s trying to become the best player.”
The Heat turned down an offer of six draft picks from Boston to draft Winslow, but Winslow said that doesn’t create any more pressure.
“There were nine teams that passed on me,” he said. “You use that as motivation. It’s no pressure. I’m sure teams were offering a lot of picks for the first pick in the draft. I’m here now. All that is behind me. I’m just here trying to learn the culture, be a good citizen in Miami, but ultimately become the best basketball player for the Heat.”
Winslow said he doesn’t “go down to South Beach too much. I spend most of my time in the arena, looking for apartments. Right now, my main priority is Triple A, going to the arena every day.”
### Wednesday marked team president Pat Riley’s 20th anniversary with the Heat, and his friend, owner Micky Arison, marked the occasion with a playful post on Instagram.
A picture of Riley, Arison and their wives was accompanied by this light-hearted remark from Arison: “Can you believe that I put up with him for the last 20 years?” followed by emojis of a smiling face and a basketball on a rim, and then the words “#3Rings” and #MoretoCome.”
Arison said, on Instagram, that he and Riley celebrated Riley's 20th Heat anniversary by dining with Samuel L. Jackson and Magic Johnson in Italy.
### The most obscure name on the UM football depth chart: 6-0, 235-pound starting fullback Gage Batten, a walk-on.
James Coley said Batten "came in and immediately was competing for the 1 job [with Walter Tucker]. And it just so happened we have to give Walter some reps at running back [because of Gus Edwards' season-ending injury]. He's kind of won the fullback spot. Walter is now in transition with doing both."
### Quarterback Malik Rosier has said UM has a special package for him. But Coley was non-committal about whether the Hurricanes will use it every game.
"We'll see," Coley said. "He definitely has the ability to come in and give us something within the game. But we'll see how that plays out."
### Tight end Standish Dobard, a skilled blocker with a penchant for drops, insists he’s much improved as a receiver after an exhaustive summer of pass-catching repetition with Brad Kaaya and a Jugs machine and repeatedly telling himself to look the ball in before running. He gets daily advice/encouragement from the man he’s replacing, Oakland tight end Clive Walford.
### Golden said contrary to the depth chart, Joe Yearby is the starter at running back. Yearby and Mark Walton had been listed as co-starters.
"Joe Yearby and Mark Walton are one and two right now, and (Trayone) Gray is three," Golden said. "All of them are getting reps with the ones."
### Two of the most intriguing variables, according to UM people: tight ends David Njoku (UM calls him a key to creating mismatches) and Jerome Washington (raw but has made some great plays in practice).
Please see the last post for a lot of Dolphins, Canes and Marlins.... Twitter: @flasportsbuzz