Saturday, January 8, 2011

Bring Back Justin McKee

Here’s a news flash I’m sure you don’t give a damn about: Early as it is in the academic year, the scholars of this world are working their fingers to the bone, and consequently, so am I. In the three seconds I have to myself every day, I ponder their absolutely astounding productivity with amazement, awe, and not a little fear, because it means I, too, will be working like a Trojan for the foreseeable future. Trust me, I am not complaining—too many people are out of work for me to ever feel anything less than hugely grateful that I’m as busy as I am. Scholars of the world, call on me! I will not let you down.

A side effect of all this, however, is that I haven’t really carved out time to comment on developments in the PBR for a while. In many cases, this is good, because it means I don’t snark off about every little bit of information that strikes me the wrong way, right out of the chute.

Contrary to what you might think, I am not somebody who likes being pissed off all the time. I’m just not. For one thing, it can’t possibly be good for me physically to constantly be all amped up on adrenaline and pawing the ground like an angry, er, bull. For another, if you let things sit for a bit, you usually find out they aren’t nearly as hair-raising as you first thought. But an announcement on the PBR website last week pretty much put me into orbit, and since I haven’t landed yet, I’m going to have to speak up.

And you all know what’s coming, don’t you? What on earth were the head honchos at the PBR thinking when they fired Justin McKee?

In the years that we have been gathering here, we have all seen changes come and go with the PBR, including a lot of stuff that hasn’t stuck to the wall and some that has. But this one is so out of left field, so completely counter-intuitive, that as Ruby is wont to say, I cannot even figure out which end of it to pull on.

So let’s just lay all the pieces out and take a look at them, here, before we start trying to put them together. On December 28, the PBR issued a press release with some details about the 2011 TV schedule. It extolled the virtues of the new production company, David Neal Productions, and roughly halfway down the page, it just sort of mentioned the fact that the commentators this year will be Craig Hummer, Ty Murray, Justin McBride, and J.W. Hart. Oh, and some woman named Erin who will supposedly be working with Leah Garcia. I daresay I’ll have more to say about that later.

If somebody at headquarters thought the implications of this list might go unnoticed, that person was in for a very rude awakening. It might have taken three seconds for PBR fans to discern what it meant, and then the comments board lit up like a pinball machine. The bottom line is that Michael Gaffney and Justin McKee will NOT be in the booth this year.

Now, I like Michael Gaffney well enough, as much as it’s possible to like somebody that you only see on TV every couple of weeks. He earned his stripes in the bull riding trade, and he seems like a genuinely nice guy. But NOBODY in the current lineup brings the wealth of information about the bulls to the table that McKee routinely reeled off, and NOBODY had the same, dare I say it, boyish enthusiasm for the bulls that shines out of him. When it comes to loving the bulls, and studying
up on them, the man gets up every day with his hair on fire.

What more could you possibly ask of a commentator? He filled a need in the booth that none of the rest of these guys seemed even remotely interested in, beyond the usual crap about how these are the best bulls in the world, yak yak, blah blah. McKee KNOWS WHY they are the best bulls in the world, and furthermore, he can TELL you WHY without making you wish you could tape his mouth shut. The stuff that he can reel off is absolutely astounding. I have learned more about the sport from Justin McKee than I have learned from ALL the rest of the commentators combined.

Just let me say here that I know for an absolute fact that it was not McKee's decision to leave the PBR, because the man told me so himself two days ago. Yes, I did email him at McKeeRanch.com, and he was kind enough to reply to somebody he'd never heard of.

It is often fascinating to watch the machinations of private organizations, precisely because such outfits are not obliged to be transparent. I don’t know whether this decision was made by some outside consultant, by some insider who has had it in for McKee for a while (and believe me, that shit happens everywhere, most frequently, in my experience, in companies that describe themselves as “families”), or by Jeffrey Pollack himself. But I am weighing in here, and I hope to hell somebody will hear me AND every other fan who has been wanting to lose his/her shoes in the PBR board’s collectives asses since this was announced.

This decision is a huge mistake.

Bring back Justin McKee.

101 comments:

Shawk said...

The broadcast tonight really highlighted just how much McKee contributed and is missed. I don't mind Hummer that much, but he's really just there to facilitate. Ty has a tendency to fill space by repeating himself, and there was a big dead space when it came to bull knowledge. I hope if people call and email, the PBR will reconsider (assuming McKee is even willing to come back).

Anonymous said...

I agree. Justin McKee brought something that no other has--knowledge and the ability to elicit huge belly laughs from the far corners of the globe!
Craig is great, so is Leah. Ty, McBride, and JW are so-so when it's just one of them at a time. Two of them with Craig and suddenly I feel as if I'm listening in on a private conversation!
And what happened to Erin? She got such a huge build-up...
So, all season we're going to tail Brendon and McKennon on their "adventures." The naked cowboy adventure...I didn't get it! Was he a reject from American Idol audition?

Shelia (Sorry, but Google won't admit that I've had an account with them for years!)

shannon said...

As someone who rarely listens to the commentators, I have never really cared one way or another who was in the booth, but I am shocked and disappointed with the decision to let McKee go. This weekend, I purposely left my finger off the ffwd button just to get a feel for what the new broadcasts would be like. While I appreciated certain things, it's obvious that Justin's absence left a gaping whole. Definitely a bad decision on their part.

Shelia, Erin and Leah are splitting the broadcasts. On one article last week, they listed the tv dates, stations and who would be in the booth and on the floor. I forget when Erin's first weekend is, though.

I thought McKennon's and Brendon's clip was funny simply because I can only imagine what first time NYC/non-bull riding fan tourists thought of them flanking a mostly naked cowboy. Rick's first words when I mentioned it were "boy toys?" Oddly enough, right after that Craig said that they'd get flak for that in the locker room. I guess he was thinking along the same lines :)

Anonymous said...

Justin McKee is PBR, without him there is so much missing....BRING HIM BACK.

Randy said...

The PBR without McKee is like a snickers without the chocolate on it.

No McKee...no me...I'm gone.

Anonymous said...

The 2011 television broadcasts are terrible without Justin McKee. Getting rid of him was a HUGE mistake. You could have gotten rid of anyone else on the broadcast team and been better off. I don't care what it costs the PBR, bring him back! The sooner the better before we all quit watching.

Anonymous said...

Why would you eliminate the most knowledgeable PBR announcer you have? Bring Justin McKee back!

RoxanneandRoger said...

McKee has always been our favorite commentator. What in the world in the PBR thinking. This is ridiculous.

Anonymous said...

Bring Back Justin McKee and Michael Gaffney!

They are PBR!

Going down this road will result in the destruction of PBR. The fans will tolerate only so much and then start losing interest. You have to keep the "foundation" that PBR was built on and Justin McKee is a very large part of that.

Kim said...

January 13, 2011
Hello PBR Fans! I have created a SAVE JUSTIN MCKEE Facebook Community. Please search for the "Save Justin Mckee" community and "Like It" on Facebook. We'll get PBR to listen to us one way or another!! Let's see how many fans we can get supporting his return. Feel free to write your comments on the Facebook wall too.

Spread the word!!!

Anonymous said...

I love J.W., McBride, and Mcgaffney, but McKee is the heart of the show! PBR just keeps shooting themselves in the foot. Just look at the empty seats at most events now and with McKee gone, I predict there'l be even more.

Stockyard Queen said...

Kim and Anonymous: Sorry for the delay posting your comments. I have been away most of the day. Kim, I've already signed onto the Facebook page. I am not very hopeful that we'll get any action, but I'm also not ready to give up.

Thanks for stopping by.

Anonymous said...

I just joined the pbr fan club today.Ive been a huge fan now going on 10 years.I had not been an official member but joined today in order to buy tickets online for the Iron cowboy event coming up.I had no idea that the PBR had canned Justin.That being said,I have no intentions on renewing my membership next year.One whole day,and the PBR has already lost my interest in the direction that it is headed

Anonymous said...

Justin McKee is a vital part of my interest in the PBR. He doesnt know everything but he can find out and deliver. Get rid of Ty and keep Justin.

Anonymous said...

Michael Gaffney in my opinion is the most personable announcer on the PBR and my suggestion is can J.W. and keep G-man!

Anonymous said...

You are trying to lose me as a watcher of the PBR. Ive been a fan from the beginning and I don't like the direction you are heading. You don't change horses in the middle of the race when you are winning, do you?

Anonymous said...

Keep Leah, Justin, and G-man

Stockyard Queen said...

Again, my apologies to the last several folks who commented. I have been on the road for the past three days and have been monitoring the blog in my few moments of downtime. Sorry for the delay in getting your remarks published on the blog.

I do want to comment on the comment that begins, "You are trying to lose me as a watcher of the PBR." As it happens, I sympathize with that statement, but I feel obliged to stress that there is no official connection between this blog and the PBR organization.

As it says in the banner headline, this is a PBR FAN site. I have seriously considered changing that to "Bull Riding Fan Site" over the past few days, and the main reason I have not is that many of the folks who have commented in the past few days have found us by searching for "Justin McKee" and the "PBR."

I want all of you to have the change to speak your minds here on this (and all) subjects PBR, so for the moment, I will keep the title of the blog as-is in the hope that folks who have something to say can continue to find us.

Anonymous said...

There are a lot of ways to change a few things in announcing for the PBR but getting rid of Justin McKee is not one of them. Watching the PBR in sacramento was just about as painful as some of the buck offs. Half the time you didn't know who was riding, or what bull they were on until they were in the arena or done. Not much information on riders or bulls, where they came from, who the contractor was or the genetics behind them. Sad, very very sad that the current producer thinks taking Justin McKee out enhances the program. He's wrong and I truly hope he is enough of a man to see it. Please get rid of the hick voice doing the into, you have got to be kidding, this isn't goat tying it's bull riding! We really do hope you bring back one of the best commentators the PBR has had, Justin McKee.

Anonymous said...

POOR ERROR IN JUDGEMENT TO LET MCKEE GO!!!!jb

Anonymous said...

RANDY WOULD NEVER HAVE LET HIM GO..jb

Anonymous said...

We really liked Donny Gay and his partners but then things changed and Justin came into the picture. He doesn't have the quips and humor that Donny had but BOY DO WE MISS HIM. WHAT A MISTAKE BY THE BIG SHOTS. DON'T THEY KNOW WHAT MAKES THE PBR ON TV...YES THE RIDERS, YES THE LIVESTOCK, BUT COME ON!!!!!!! JUSTIN REALLY MADE THE INFO ON THE LIVESTOCK AND THE TID BITS ON THE RIDERS REALLY EXCITING. NOW IT IS JUST BLAH!

Anonymous said...

I watched the PBR this weekend and I found it very boring. Where is the commentary of the bulls!The commentary of the riders sucks! How about that new girl they hired to share the spotlight with Lea. Watching her was like watching paint dry! Bring back McKee please!

FLWeller said...

Things have changed this year and not for the better. Justine Mckee was a vital part of the broadcasts. And I am sorry but Ty is terrible. Constantly repeating himself, pretty sad the way the PBR is going... Erin is even worse than Ty. Renato is there with a BIG block of ice on his hand and she asks, "Renato what is keeping you from riding in the final round"... ridiculous question Erin!

Gman was pretty good and way better than Ty as well. Ty is simply not that good.

The new "Wired" thing is pretty lame as well as the is stupid "truth booth".

Mckee must be brought back!

Sage Gray said...

Thanks for letting all of us know what happened to Justin McKee. I have been to the PBR website and a lot of others. I haven't quit watching PBR yet, but if they don't get it together I might. And I have been watching ever since it started. Ty was a great bullriding but he is lacking as a comentator. Craig doesn't seem to have learned anything about bull riding in all the years he has been watching and listening to Justin McKee.
Why has everything been changed and why won't they listen to the fans?

Anonymous said...

My husband and I have been PBR fans for over 10 years now. We have seen alot of riders and bullsalong the way. There is always change along the way ,but getting rid of Justin MeKee was not a change for the good. Please bring Justin back.

Anonymous said...

We are shocked!!! Justin McKee was fired???? He was what made this thing exciting with his passion. humor and knowledge!! Get McKee back!! I am so BORED with Ty and Craig and that stupid Erin. I'll bet she has never even been to a bull ride!! thIS is HORRIBLE!!! There is not talent here and we also miss Gaffney, who was greatand personable! JW (racist) and McBride suck!!

Anonymous said...

without Mckee and Leah you guys arent what the PBR stands for, the bullriders should make you guys get them back cause you are hurting them and PBR without Justin and Leah you guys are history it is just not very exciting anymore. You better get them back, no matter the cost ! Maybe Mckee and Leah should start another Bullriding event on there own that would give PBR something to think about , kinda like history repeats itself TUFF and Don Gay. duh better just get Mckee and Leah Back!!!

chris said...

Missed McKee and Leah. We went to Indy Show this weekend and not only have they got rid of announcers there are alot of other things I noticed. Dayt sheets were hard to find for sat show and as a 3 year fan club member I could not geyt a day sheet for sunday event and no one could tell me where to get one. Less mixing events with riders. Please fix PBR before it goes backwards.

Anonymous said...

Please bring back Justin McKee and Lea Garcia - the PBR is not the same without them.

Nellie

Anonymous said...

The last broadcast was awful... G-man and Mckee are definitely being missed on this end. They make the show so much more informative and entertaining.
Hope Leah gets back soon - I can't stand Erin. She seems pretty brainless.

BRING MCKEE AND GAFFNEY BACK. :(

Anonymous said...

Justin McKee was my favorite. Craig Hummer still looks like a guy off a dude ranch and sure does not understand bull riding as hard as he tries. Poor Ty is just not good behind a microphone...and I miss Leah also. Poor mistake on the PBR's part. Justin McKee is a great announcer and I met his wife one year at Cheyenne and she was so nice also.

Don Cop said...

BRING BACK McKEE!. As far as I and my PBR watching friends you can replace Hummer with McKee, he and J. W. Hart are the only reason to watch the PBR. What shumk fired the best announcer on the show. If McKee doesn't come back I am through watching the lame announcers you now have.

Johnny said...

Brng back Justin the pbr has gone to corprate. Even though the suits are running the show now. Keep in mind that the founding bull riders are still the major share holders, and they maybe the ones to answer to this major screw up also. Sure would like to know who voted for justin to stay and who voted him off if there was a vote think about that. anyways it is a huge mistake boy Johnny Hill

qdmmc said...

mckee was the best. bring him back! what are they thinking??

Anonymous said...

Justin Mckee was the best commentator on the show...We enjoyed him more then jw hart and ty murray put together...Bring him BACK

Anonymous said...

Shame on the powers that be....
What in the world are you thinking?
Michael and Justin are as important to the PBR as the bulls.
Leah does just fine by herself and at least knows what she is talking about also.

Better put things right or as the good ole boys say "It'll cost ya in the long haul."
Portland Mi.

Anonymous said...

It is senseless for the PBR to lose Justin McKee. Surely this mistake can be reversed. Should be reversed.

PBR, BRING JUSTIN MCKEE BACK!!!!! Please!

Anonymous said...

Like the saying goes - if it ain't broke don't fix it! We missed th4 first event of this season, but when we did tune in, Justin's absence was very apparent. He is a riot and knows more than the rest put together. And where in th4 world did they find this Erin person. She's got the personality off a rock and knows about as much. Leah is missed too. WAKE UP AND SMELL THE COFFEE. YOU SCREWED UP! ! !

Anonymous said...

Here is my two cents!! When somthing works, don't fix it!
Watching the PBR now is worse than listening to Don Gay and his cheerleader attitude. Ty Murray is of course on of the founding fathers of this event, no secret. But he is a "has been". Get real. Hummer learned all he can from McKee, had to, he don't even fit one part of this puzzle. McBride likes himself to much and gazes into the camera to smile at himself, you know he is his own number one fan! There was a time not so long ago when we all watched his fit throwing, poor sportsmanship in the arena, a taste that still tastes like crap in my mouth. Yes, he has earned his way to be the "highest money earner" of the PBR, maybe some earnings may be spent taking a class from Justin McKee on mannerism, and a little more insight on the bulls pedigree, hell, Shorty and Justin make the show, now what's left is Shorty being my reason to know how these bulls buck and how to vote!!
McKee is missed by many and will always be. What next, Dan Miller!!! Good God!! And Erin!!!!! I watched the Portland PBR and where in the heck did this girl come from? Just as well put a monkey in the show along with the rest of the circus, at least that would bring entertainment back without the humiliation.
Bring Justin back! Justin is a cowboy and knows his trade as an announcer and a stockman! I'm tired of the " has beene" they had their day in the sun, why loose what repore they have left standing up in front of thousands knowing what we all think of them as hosts.
The PBR is crap without a hero, Justin is what made the show, now all that is left is Donnie and Dan and Hummer and the Half Witts, just goes to show that the big boys who decided this don't know how to still listen to the lil man.
Bring Justin back!
That's my nickels worth out of a two cent comment!
Ya pay for what you get!!

"

DebK said...

With Justin McKee gone, watching this show has become boring. His personality and fun attitude and knowledge brought so much to the PBR. McKee was like a "Flint" in the announcing booth he made the show enjoyable to watch. Now I feel like I am just watching a baseball game with nothing said but Strike One! My opinion on Justin McBride, he should not be a commentator. He is too aloof and comes across with the attitude that what he does and knows is all that is right. Michael Gaffney and JDub were the best cowboys along with McKee...McKee IS THE PBR! Craig is really great and Leah can not be replaced. Whatever you have tried to accomplish with the airing of the PBR has totally FLOPPED! Read all of your comments and take notes of your calls. I am not as quick to watch it, as I do not enjoy it as well. It is boring. Bring back Justin McKee, Leah

Anonymous said...

What makes a commentary interesting is facts. You don't get facts with the current men trying to make the Bull riding fun to watch! Someone made a HUGE mistake firing Just McKee! And, I don't know where they got Erin. She is not fun to watch.

Anonymous said...

I agree with most of the posters here. Have watched PBR since Donnie Gay. Without Justin, the commentary is as lame as a 3-legged horse (or bull). You can't expect as much from the bullriders, so I give them some slack. Love J.W. and McBride together; Gaffney, nice guy but slooowwww and repeats himself constantly; Ty is okay; sounds better this year-he is trying! Erin-yuck, embrassing to watch. It appears that money is the reason for all the changes; less riders, shorter programs, and no McKee. My suggestion-replace Craig with McKee if $$ is a problem. McKee, with Shorty, can do it by himself!

MJ said...

Please bring Justin McKee back - dump Craig(send him back to cycling/yachting).We want info on the bulls/riders/bullfighters...McKee knows all these subjects.McKee also has a sense of humor.The PBR/VS/NBC have made a huge mistake by firing McKee.

Charlotte said...

I personally have never been able to figure out why they keep letting Hummer come back each year?? Anyone? I too will not be renewing my pbr membership and won't continue to watch the broadcast(s) unless they improve dramatically. Maybe the pbr has outgrown its loyal fans?

Jules said...

Yes, my wife and I too would like McKee back in the booth. They also need to get rid of Erin for all the obvious reasons--balloons take up less space.
We were very overjoyed when Craig made the booth, as we had seen him in prior years on OLN and enjoyed his work: and when he came onboard he knew what he was talking about, which means he had done back ground research before opening his mouth. The cowboys are okay, but just not on air personalities yet.

Giggor

Barlink said...

We're in total agreement. Justin McKee kept the PBR Annoucing booth entertaining and factual. Evidently the new CEO hasn't got a clue what the fans like. Bring back Justin McKee to the PBR Annoucing booth.....make it once again the show it use to be before such a mistake was made.

Beckie said...

This is the most G-- awful PBR ever. How did we get a bike rider as PBR announcer? And NO Leah?? I can not understand how any one let this happen. This is pretty much the END of the PBR.

Anonymous said...

If someone had to go it should not have been Justin Mckee. His knowlege of the riders, bulls and unique sense of humor was a definate plus for those of us watching at home. The magic he brought is gone. GET HIM BACK!!!!

hink_1 said...

it is boring. going down hill fast. turned too much corporate.

Anonymous said...

Commentary this year is dire. Justin McBride should get back on the bulls if he wants to entertain - his humorless drone is killing the experience of watching this fantastic sport. McKee graced the coverage with his humor and insight. Versus please bring back the A team.

Sherrie Cross said...

I have been lucky enough to call Justin McKee a friend for several years. I have worked with him at several PRCA rodeos. I will admit bull riding isn't my favorite event. The ONLY reason I watched the pbr on tv was because of Justin Mckee. Not any was he knowledgeable of the bulls and riders, but with his experience as a GREAT RODEO ANNOUNCER, he was able to keep things flowing with ease. The newbees might be bullriders but have they ever announced a rodeo? I think the PRCA is the lucky ones in this scenario; they get back one of the all time greatest announcers!!

Anonymous said...

Whose decision was it to get rid of Justin? I have been to thousands of rodeos and been a huge fan of PBR, but without Justin it just isn't interesting or entertaining. His one liners and years of knowledge and experience of IRREPLACABLE! while I'm at it, Erin, sorry but you are in over your head and the only other commentator (female) who could replace Leah is Jennifer Smith. I doubt all this ranting and raving will do any good but if they want me to renew my 7 year membership it will have to be when Justin and Leah come back. I don't want to overlook Micheal Gaffney either he is always dead-on in his commentary, I love Ty, JW, and Justin but Gaffney has a maturity they can't match...so PBR board of directors need to bring what the FANS (translate that as $$$$) want!

miscelayneous said...

Justin McKee fired????? Justin McKee the 'heart' of the PBR. Justin McKee..??? Like some one else said what the H*@L is the PBR thinking!!!!! Ok, you've got to have a straight man -- Craig Hummer -- that seems to be a given. Then you've got the great almighty Ty Murray. At the beginning of the season he was trying and by trying I mean to say something constructive about the riders. Now he's back to criticizing everything about everyone -- just like last year (YAWN). Michael Gaffney, as someone said, may be slooooooooooow(?) and repetitive BUT he at least demonstrates that he knows something about riding/riders and can find something good to say about each and every rider along with whatever they may need to improve on. Leah -- at least she functions down on the dirt where as Erin is always asking a stupid question or making a ridiculous comment and then 'back to you, Craig'not even giving the interviewee a chance. The opening song is a good song but 2 to 3 times per program.?.?. That's a bit much. I know who the riders are/what the bulls look like; I want to see bullriding not hear someone's song promotion. And don't even get me started on the going-to-commerical announcer(ess)- since the voice is female. How iritating. Justin McKee brings knowledge and humor to the program. Justin McBride brings his 'I'm greater than the rest of you' attitude. Remember when McBride rode and made the 8 seconds on the side or underneath the bull, he got at least a 93 or better. Anyone else??? Try an 80 if they are lucky. We miss Justin McKee. The format sucks!!!! Hopefully the 'powers that be' will read some of these comments. After all it is the fan base that makes the PBR. WISE UP

Anonymous said...

Chris said the PBR needs to bring back Justin Mckee and Leah Garcia. Erin does not do justice to the PBR and Justin was a big part of the commentary of the PBR. I don't know what they could be thinking but the way it is now is not enjoyasble.

llzade said...

I too am not as interested in the PBR as I have been in the past years. Justin McKee added so much to this event with his knowledge about bull riding and his humor. Leah did so well with her interviews. I am sure Erin is a sweet girl but the PBR is not her field for sure. I hope the future holds these people coming back. I looked forward to these events but the fun has gone out of it now. These people that they let go made a difference.

Laura

Larry said...

Larry says
I watch the PBR everynite most of the time from tape. WHO WAS THE DUMB BUNNY, releasing Justin he brings the PBR rite into the livingroom, thru his knowledge of the sport and the bulls.
Craig does not have enough know how of the sport for anything more than an announcement or two during the show. Leave Leah alone she is great.
Larry

Larry said...

Justin McKee was the hilite of the PBR tv shows. He knew what he was talking about and told it like it is. Craig adds very little to the show and knows less. The riders with Craid add some, but Justin was the glue that held it all together. Justin knows the bulls, the breeding of the bulls and the showmanship. BRING BACK JUSTIN
Larry

Anonymous said...

we really miss justin mckee-we want him back-NOW!!!!

Springvale said...

Just finished watching the PBR on Versus and surely do miss Justin McKee. It is sadly lacking since he has been gone. On a positive note, it sure is good to have Leah back. She shows how a professional interview should be done.

Anonymous said...

I have been waiting for Justin Mckee to be broadcasting. Dummy me I hadn't heard he had been fired. Ever weekend I have been waiting for everything to get better. Without Justin you have lost the most important person. Listening to him alway made the reruns even better. Now I just barely make it to the end of the program. Leah, no one can can replace her either. Why do the bigwigs think they know so much more than we ordinary people who watch. All the other garbbage they have added is so boring I keep falling asleep. Eventually I will just turn it off completely.

Rob in Alaska said...

Corporate knows best??? Not hardly! Watching the PBR without Justin McKee is excruciating. I love all the knowledge and color that Justin has always brought to the announcing booth. Tonight, the broadcast from Chicago is simply painful to listen to. Lots of "dead air". Ty is having trouble putting two words together. I don't think the "new guy" on tonight's broadcast has ever seen bull riding before. Shorty is the only one with a personality tonight. If this is supposed to be the "Big Show", why in the world would you get rid of the most PROFESSIONAL BROADCASTER the PBR had? Justin makes the viewer feel like you are right there in the arena. If Corporate is going to take the fans out of the equation, then it will be the demise of the sport.

Anonymous said...

Quit changing the PBR. It is hard to keep watching with all the changes. Bring back Justin McKee, keep Leah, and quit changing the format. I have been watching the PBR for a long time and wish you would quit messing with a good thing.

Anonymous said...

Diddo-Bring back McKee or you are going to lose viewers!Tonite's commentators just ain't workin!

Anonymous said...

I have been a PBR fan for many years. Without Justin Mckee it is BORING. I love watching the actual 8 second bull riding but we, the TV fans need commentators that can be entertaining as well as humerous to keep us interested. I cant bear to listen to all the dull repetive announcing much longer. Changes must happen soon or I will no longer be watching!!!!

Colleen Gaiotti said...

Justin McKee and Craig Hummer are the best part of the show besides the actual rides. I really dont think I will continue to watch if the announcing continues to be such poor quality. Also, the format has changed for the worse. When a rider comes out of the shoot, their name and the bull name is not shown again and you dont even know who you are watching at times. I do not like any of the changes this year. Not worth paying for my Dish upgrade just so we could watch PBR.

Dean said...

Instead of watching PBR I am spending all my time trying to figure out how to leave messages with versus and PBR about Justin McKee. I loved bull riding all these years because it was so unlike the other sports programs. It seemed honest and spontaneous. Now not only do we still have Hummer (although not tonight apparently) we lost he last unique feature - Justin McKee. I still like to watch the riders but I think I'll go back to other bull riding venues.

Patti said...

Well, tonight finally did it for me. Looks like the Bulls are bucking on a Florida sand beach and the commentators are bubba's. I quit watching and switched to a cooking show! See you PBR...not going to the Last Cowboy Standing now either!

JMarie said...

I'm glad we're hearing more from Shorty Gorham! At the risk of group condemnation here, and nothing personal against Justin McKee, I find the PBR announcing changes refreshing. Too many times in the past, the announcers (Justin McKee especially) talked right thru a ride about something else (usually his anecdotes) instead of announcing anything about the rider or the bull, both before and after the ride. It went completely unannounced due to McKee droning on about something else. It was so bad at times that I put the show on mute, hardly noticed any difference since they weren't really announcing anyway.

ps I want to put in a good word for Brendon Clark and his contributions in the booth. He did a great job and I was hoping it would become a regular thing.

Stockyard Queen said...

JMarie, I find your comment interesting because I don't recall ever being bothered by Justin McKee talking while the ride was going on. Maybe that's because he was usually talking about the bulls, and I loved hearing about the bulls. All we get about the bulls now is "This is a really good bull, should go around to the left with a hop-skip and then settle into a spin," followed about half the time by dead air during the ride, a malfunctioning time clock, and NO bull score. I can't say I find that "refreshing."

JMarie said...

Yes, this fan found it refreshing because I'm there for the riders not for the announcers and I want to hear their rides announced.

I don't mind dead air during the ride, Stockyard Queen, it's the lack of announcing beforehand what rider and what bull we're watching. I did notice this happen once at Chicago but Sam quickly supplied the information after the ride.

There were just too many times in past years when riders rode completely unannounced both before and after their rides.

I appreciate the information about the bulls and noticed we are actually getting a lot more of it now, complete with diagrams of the ride during the slo-mo showing how vertical some of those bucks are. Also being told which way they are expected to go adds dimension and depth to what we see of the athletic abilities of both rider and bull.

It just seems to me to be more professional now, more informative, and more about bull riding than about clever sayings.

With PBR getting the attention now of a much wider audience, it's beneficial to have announcers like Sam asking the questions about re-rides and rope placement, etc that new fans may not be as familiar with as long-time fans are.

Anonymous said...

i like mkeezie!!!!
i used to ride bulls in high school rodeo.
justin knows alot about the bulls. miss him.
id rather see new girl than leah and mckee.


gaffney doesnt comment on certain things he doesnt like.
when the native american speacial guest came out in the ty murray invitational, he didnt comment on the natives while mkcee said his wife was native.

gaffney only comments on his personal interest.

jusitn mkcee " spud jones is like chow ming of china for his navajo people, he can win chief from a land slide"
gaffney "?????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????"

keep gaffney bring back mkcee!!!!!!
mkcee doesnt know how to ride bulls he just knows info.
people keep dogging mcbride, j.w., t.y.
but they are legends in the sport and know how to ride bulls. stop dogging a first person perspective.

Lola said...

I think whoever decided to get rid of Justin McKee and Michael Gaffney must have made that decision after falling on their head when thrown from a bull. Anyone who is thinking clearly wouldn't have made a poor decision like that. It's not that I don't like the current commentators. It's just that McKee brought so much color and excitement to the table. He was as much entertainment as watching the guys ride the bulls. My husband and I watch every week and we really miss Justin McKee. Please bring him back.

Anonymous said...

We really miss Justin McKee because he really symbolizes the real rodeo crowd. He is not the glib TV commentator who doesn't know what he is talking about and thinks he's more important than the sport you are watching. McKee-ism's made us laugh. His knowledge of the sport helped us to become PBR fans -- and kept us watching for the last few years. We could trade the cost of the "WIRED" microphones that don't add anything to the experience to hire him back.

Anonymous said...

I was wondering what happened to McKee and why I didn't see him on PBR. Really miss him and his great quotes. I could feel the tension with one of the other announcers last year and I was pretty sure McKee wouldn't be back. Guess I was right. I think it had to do with jealousy. Some men just don't like others knowing more than they do and a certain announcer I could tell felt that way with some of the comments he would say towards McKee. PLEASE BRING MCKEE BACK PBR!!!

Anonymous said...

I have been a PBR since it was televised on TNN & attend all local events possible. I was afraid when they went public & Randy Bernard left it would change. But continuing without Justin McKee? It's left too big of a hole. I find myself now searching the web for Championship Bull Riding when I want to see a show. Bull riding is what a fan tunes into watch NOT all the worthless bits!

Anonymous said...

I really miss McKee. Hope the BPR will reconsider. They pay Flint lots for his entertainment value. Justin was worth more.

margaret polo said...

please please bring back Justin McKee.It is not as interesting or as much fun to watch without him. I say get rid of person who changed format.....margaret

Jon From Ridgefield said...

It looks like it is too bad that Justin was a roper instead of a bull rider.
My thoughts echo all those before me.
An old guy told me: "IF it aint broke DON'T fix it"
Same for Leah and GMan. I have wondered who had the position in the PBR to do the firing??
I doubt RANDY would have allowed it.
Jon from Ridgefield, Wa.

Pwt and RET said...

My husband and I also really miss Justin McKee on the PBR. He was always excited, exciting, and informative. We want him back also! It's just not the same interest and enthusiasm since he's not there. Ty, J.W. and Justin McBride are always fun, but we would rather see that semi-phoney Craig Hummer out of there, and that new set of girls are truly awful; we have never been super fans of Leah, but she's way better than any of them. Justin could have been good down in the shutes. We miss Justin McKee!

Anonymous said...

The PBR is forgetting what made the PBR what it is today. It was the COWBOYS and now this so called new wave is going to ruin it. Justin McKee along with JW Hart, Michael M.,Justin McBride and yes even Ty (even though he may not be so politically correct or whatever it is they think would make him better by going broadcasting school)is the back bone of the PBR being broadcast. They have been there done that, know what they are talking about. You could loose Craig and who would notice. I am afraid this is just the beginning of the downfall of the PBR. Sure people will still go and watch because of the young men riding the bulls, but without a doubt it will not be the same. They need to look at the majority of the people that attend this, they are COWBOYS not corporate poopaa's out to make a buck or a millon or two.

Rick said...

I tell you what. Big mistake getting rid of Justin Mckee and Michael Gaffney. This PBR is going to turn into professional football, basketball, and baseball bullshit if the people keep firing these people that know bullriding. I don't want to listen to commentators that have no clue. I want the good ole boys back! Duh! Winning! I have been a PBR member for 15 years. Wake up people!

Dave. said...

Well Friends you shouldn't be surprised that McKee is gone, you could always tell McBride & Hart and even Murray didn't like him, I think they were all jealous because he done his homework and was one of the most knowledgeable guys about the sport to have never been on a bull I ever seen. No I don't think McKee would come back even if they begged him and I wouldn't blame him, Stop and think about what happens when Ty murray doesn't like someone, well they don't last long. I too have hung up my spurs enough is enough and now there going to try out this pay-per-view and if that goes well then you will see a lot more of them, COUNT ME OUT.

Katie B. said...

I miss Justin McKee. I wrote to the PBR to tell them so. I'm hoping that next year will bring better changes (like bringing McKee back). I guess us fans don't have much say in the matter. But I did write to them, and I'm not purchasing PBR products (fan club membership, event tickets, T-shirts, etc) because that is all I can do. And the previous writer is correct: I won't purchase the pay-per-view event either (even though I want to).

On Justin McBride's web show about a month ago, he had Justin McKee on as a guest, and McKee said that he would be doing some special guest spots on the PBR. Every week I tune in in the hopes of watching him again. I'm always disappointed.

The current commentators are as dry as toast. The "wired" thing is silly and useless. The same ole' comments from Shorty are like a broken record.

Why did PBR take away something that the fans liked so much? I'm still hoping they will make things right.

-Katie in Massachusetts

Anonymous said...

The downfall of the PBR is on its way. Its not about the Cowboys anymore. Its about making money for the ones who already have it. Just like most of the people (I'm sure) we have to save up to go to events because the cost has gone up, being a member of the fan club has gone up with no real benefits. They take away Justin McKee the only real commentator they had and now they want the events on pay-per-view. What is the PBR coming to???????

Anonymous said...

I didn't renew my Team PBR membership when I found out that McKee was getting the axe. What a shame!!!

Katie B. said...

Well, here's a question... The PBR announced that Justin McKee will be a commentator for the Pay-Per-View event, "Last Cowboy Standing". So, do we show support for McKee by buying the Pay-Per-View or not? I LOVE watching the rides/riders, and I'd love to watch the event, however, I don't want to support these changes with my money. What will you all do?

-Katie in Massachusetts

Stockyard Queen said...

Katie, I am very, very suspicious of the timing of the announcement that McKee will be making an appearance at LCS. I'm wondering if perhaps the folks at headquarters aren't worried about fans balking at spending $30 to see it on PPV and are throwing in the McKee bone to persuade those of us who are on the fence about it. I'm thinking about it, but I'm leaning toward not watching it.

Anonymous said...

I am beginning to believe that the fans of the PBR are not as important as they should be!! Without the fans the PBR would just buck off into the back pens.

Anonymous said...

We miss McKee too. I threaten every week to quit watching. I think this upcoming pay-per view event will push us over the line finally. We can't stand Erin and the new female announcer either. What is the PBR becoming? So money hungry that they would let their best announcer go and charge to watch their events. Unbelievable and so disappointed!!

Stockyard Queen said...

Out of curiosity, I checked with my cable company and learned that LCS is going to run from 7 in the morning till 3 in the afternoon. Even if I weren't already completely pissed off over the ouster of McKee and the blatant money-grubbing aspects of this event, I don't think I would invest 8 hours in watching it. That would be way too much of a good thing, even for a bull-riding addict like me.

Tex. said...

I am so bored with the broadcasts now. Craig's ignorance of the sport does not help any. PLEASE BRING BACK JUSTIN MCKEE. We to have let our PBR memberships expire.

Roxie said...

The PBR telecasts are way too commercialized now-- I'm really sick already of seeing the phonyness of them chugging "Rockstar" after they ride and all segments now are just a different form of a commercial for Ford, or Stanley, or whatever...

The "new and improved" PRR telecasts are lifeless and lame without the non-commercialized, really funny humor of Justin McKee- and his insights... he added a dimension to the show that NO ONE currently on can... The only reason I still watch is my Mom still likes it, a little, but not like she did before...

Bring Justin McKee back Please!
Thank you.

Anonymous said...

I really miss Justin McK as well. It's not the same, his flair was a big part of the PBR.
Your "Higher Up's" made a big mistake with that move.

Fan from Hoosierland

Anonymous said...

I don't care for the PBR new format. Former format was pure bull riding with good honest commentary, thanks in great part to Justin McKee. New format is too "Hollywood" trying to snare new viewers who aren't necessarily bull riding fans. Ditch the new production company, return to old format and Bring back Justin McKee!!!!

Wes said...

If you want to watch a real bull riding, like the old days......CBR is the one. Might not be as fancy, bulls and riders might be a step slower, but its real. Not a bunch of over produced crap with NFL players and somebody drinking a Rockstar after every ride. Mckee is most likely happy not to be involved in the smoke and mirror P-BS-R.

Stockyard Queen said...

I appreciate your comment, Wes, but I tried the CBR and can't do it. Since I'm only in it to see the bulls, watching less than stellar animals just doesn't cut it for me.

Dusty Boots said...

So, a year and a half later I find out what actually happened to Justin McKee. There were all the channel changes as to who was broadcasting PBR back then and I thought he was missing just because we were mostly seeing the NBC announcers.

When Justin McKee was gone coincided with when we lost interest in the PBR. We used to go when it was in Anaheim, but now we don't even watch it any more. Justin McKee was so colorful, and came up with the most creative expressions. I sure wish I'd written some of them down. I love J.W. and the other Justin as bull riders, but they're not not very interesting as announcers, and don't even know why Hummer is there.

Dusty Boots said...

A year and a half later I finally find out that the PBR sabatoged itself by letting Justin McKee go. We were fans for years on TV, and went to the PBR when they were in Anaheim. There were changes in the station broadcasting the PBR back then and I thought Justin McKee was gone just because we were seeing Hummer and the NBC people. We totally lost interest after McKee was gone. Watched a couple on TV in 2011 and not a single one in 2012, and of course quit paying to go. Justin McKee is to PBR as Vin Scully is to the Dodgers. McBride and Hart were good riders, but they're not very interesting as commentators. I don't know why Hummer is even there, just seems like a city boy perhaps added for the New York crowd who don't care for homey humor. PBR was the first sport in my half century that I watched every week and was willing to pay to see live (then went home and watched again with McKee's commentary). It was extremely viewer friendly through 2010, but that's gone now and so are we.

d said...

you guys blew it with letting McKee to, this and letting the brazilians in. i just want to see american cowboys doing american sports .

Anonymous said...

4 years after the fact, I'm reminded how McKee left his mark. He has no equal in the PBR announcer lineup. When I heard McKee remark about the "snot-cam", I was hooked. PBR is the poorer for that divorce.