Last night was a historic first: The Raptors game featured an entire team of female broadcasters. All five of them. These intelligent, knowledgeable, kickass women not only followed the game and announced every move, but they commented, discussed, and analyzed the game like a bunch of pros. It’s a long overdue first in the history of the NBA.
Amy Audibert is a sportscaster who covers Toronto’s G-League Team, the Raptors 905, and the WNBA’s Atlanta Dream. She’s certainly no stranger to television as she’s appeared on CBS Sports, NBATV, and NBATV Canada in the past.
Meghan McPeak took charge of the play-by-play, just as she does for the Washington Mystics and the Washington Wizard’s G-League affiliate, the Capital City Go-Go. It was obvious in the easy way she followed the players around the court that she is incredibly familiar with this role.
Kia Nurse is a name many of us have heard before, and that’s because she’s an All-Star member of the WNBA’s Phoenix Mercury as well as a member of the Canadian National Team. She has also been a regular analyst and contributor for TSN since last September, so she’ no stranger to the broadcasting side of the game either.
Kayla Grey is the first black woman to host a flagship sports-highlight show in Canada. She achieved this when she started anchoring SportsCentre on TSN in 2018. Among her many other achievements, Grey covered the Raps during their Championship run in 2019 and reported on the subsequent, historic NBA Championship parade in Toronto.
Kate Beirness is a name most of us Raptors fans know very well as she’s been hosting TSN’s SportsCentre for almost ten years. She’s been reporting on March Madness over the last week (and the last several years!) and will no doubt be involved with Olympic analysis in 2022.
I sat down last night to watch my Raps take on the Nuggets, more excited than ever because of the all-female broadcast team I was about to witness. I decided to open up my laptop and jot down some notes so I could write a stellar piece once the game was over. Here’s my real time analysis of the analysis.
TIPOFF! LET’S DO THIS THING!!!
- Kia and Meghan: the chemistry, their easy dialogue, is fantastic.
- I want them to have hilarious catch phrases like “Get that garbage outta here!”
- They handled the info about Siakam’s $50,000 suspension well, discussing it without sounding judgemental. They were constructive in their criticism and didn’t make any assumptions.
- Meghan asking Kia questions about what it’s like to have a rookie guarding her – GREAT ADDITION! None of the other Raptors’ broadcasters have any playing experience.
- Kia referenced Jack’s “Get that garbage outta here!” moment! And it was a damn good impression!
- Kia’s joke about how she doesn’t know any songs that Jack and Matt reference because she’s not old enough is GOLD.
- Meghan tried one of Jack’s high-pitched outbursts, but it didn’t quite fly. Kudos for trying. Kia says, “Jack has a different octave.” I’m dying over here!
- Meghan: “Leaving Fred VanVleet open is like leaving Kia Nurse open: not something you want to do!” *slow clap*
- Kia’s comment about how no player ever thinks they actually fouled – HA!
- The Raps scored 72 points in the first half – something we haven’t seen in a long time – and I attribute this 100% to the female broadcasters.
- Okay, Kia’s Jack Armstrong impressions are spot on.
HALFTIME! THAT MEANS A SNACK REFILL!
- Amy at the half know what’s up. Her analysis is spot on.
- Kate and Amy are awesome together. Their back-and-forth is just perfect.
- Amy: “My golly gosh!” Kate: “I don’t think we’ve ever heard that on a Raps broadcast before.” Could this be her new tagline?!
- I forgot to mention that Kayla Grey (earlier) said “more happier” and I’m not impressed with her grammatical mistake here. One of my pet peeves.
- The “fan angle” moment when they showed the little girls pretending to be broadcasters! Oh, my heart!
- Denver Nuggets: 64 points so far and 2 nose bleeds. Well done. (or at least what looks to be two nose bleeds – might have been a lip the second time)
- As my dad likes to say: KA-POWELL! Powell sinks it from the 3!
- Kia’s notes about how the Raps need to do better getting rebound shots: *chef’s kiss*
- Meghan really does have the perfect tone and cadence of a sportscaster. And she is on the ball – literally!
- Kate: “This could be the last quarter that Norm Powell and Kyle Lowry are in the same uniform.” I DON’T WANT TO TALK ABOUT THIS!
- Seriously, I absolutely love Kia’s commentary and criticism. She knows this game SO WELL.
- Did I mention how glad I am that Nick Nurse finally got a haircut? That mullet thingy wasn’t his best look.
- NICE FAKEOUT K LOW!
- Kia is being very generous in talking about Spicy P’s slow return to form over the last few games. Very generous indeed.
- Wait, did Meghan just say, “chirping foul”? Or was it “tripping foul”? I like chirping better.
- Kia: “Is this possibly…”
Me: “DON’T SAY IT!”
Kia: “Is this maybe the last time we see…”
Me: “DO NOT SAY IT!”
Kia: “…Kyle in a Raptors jersey?”
- I don’t know why, but I like hearing Meghan say “Bol Bol.”
- Matt Thomas from the corner: perfection.
- I also love how Meghan says “Watanabe.”
- STOP BRINGING UP KYLE AND NORM’S FUTURE. JUST STOP IT.
- I DON’T LIKE CHANGE.
- Kyle walking out = tears sliding down my face.
- STOP TALKING ABOUT IT, I SAID!
- Okay, now Kayla is talking to Norm about his future. I’m plugging my ears. LALALALALA!
- Game over, Raps win. They’ve finally ended the losing streak. Thank GOD!
- Is it a coincidence that the losing streak ends on a night with an all-female broadcast team? Absolutely not.
- Pascal deserves Performer of the Game, but… geez. Took ya long enough, buddy.
- I’m done now.
Love me some Matty D, Jack + Leo, but the ladies are killin’ this @Raptors broadcast. And, hey, if the Raps get this W, they get the full-time gig. Dems da rules. Keep up the great work, @meghanmcpeak, @KayNurse11 and @Kayla_Grey! #WeTheNorth— J.E. Skeets (@jeskeets) March 25, 2021
PS – It’s 5pm on Thursday and the Raptors have NOT traded Kyle Lowry. THANK YOU!