It’s been such a long time since a Boston sports radio host got in trouble for making racist remarks on the air. But it’s time to reset the clock, as Tony Massarotti of the Sports Hub (98.5 FM) stepped in it big-time on Friday. According to Chris Novak of Awful Announcing, Massarotti and cohost Mike Felger were broadcasting from different locations, and Massarotti thought it was worthy of note that there were two Black men sitting behind Felger.
“I wanna know now who the two guys behind you are,” Massarotti said. “Because if I were you … They can’t hear us, right? OK, so I would be careful if I were you. Because the last time you were around a couple of guys like that, they stole your car.”
Good Lord. Massarotti was full of apologies on Monday, and, Novak wrote, appeared to be on the verge of tears. “When it comes to apologies, at least he alluded to the fact that no one had to accept his,” Novak continued. “A common refrain following apologies is that everyone is meant to accept it. That isn’t always the case, and being aware of that, in his defense, is at least an acknowledgment.”
Felger wasn’t exactly quick off the draw, which he took responsibility for later. “I knew it was wrong the moment it went out and I could have stopped the show,” Felger said, according to an account by WCVB-TV (Channel 5). “I could have stopped it and corrected it, and I didn’t in real time.”
It remains to be seen what additional fallout there might be, if any. Massarotti was part of NESN’s Red Sox broadcasts last year, but the network had already decided against bringing him back.