Those of you that have been long-time CLNS Radio listeners know that Mike "The Scotsman" Munger and Calvin Chamberlain have been battling out over their beloved teams for nearly 6 years. I get asked at least once a week, how the hell did you find Calvin Chamberlain? Most Celtics fans know Mike "The Scotsman" Munger (Scotty) from his co-starring role in the Boston Celtics Championship DVD; Return to the Rafters. When hearing him on CLNS Radio, the mailbag entries start to flood my inbox asking, how'd you get that guy on your network?
Following Saturday night's Celtics Post Game Show, again my inbox flooded with questions asking how these two totally different dudes got stuck in a broadcast booth together on CLNS Radio. I figured today was a good day to tell the story...
In 2009, Lee Herman was my lead-blogger on the former Celtics fan blog, North Station Sports (NSS). Lee covered every-single Celtics game (recaps and previews) for 82 games and 14 post season games. NSS was the predecessor to this site and was a skeleton crew of upstart writers, and aspiring bloggers. A fun hobby for two Celtics fans, living outside of the Boston area. Most don't realize that Calvin Chamberlain (and Matt Rury from Gino's Jungle) are the only survivors of the original writing team that now make-up our large staff at CLNS. Jared Weiss, CLNS current Celtics Locker Room Reporter, soon joined the NSS staff as well.
After the regular season was ending, Lee and I had decided that we needed help in covering the long NBA season. Our pursuit of a columnist had begun.
After receiving a ton of writing samples from around the web, Lee and I had sat unimpressed. Lee had a harebrained scheme to have a fantastic writer of satire on many non-sports forums contact me. First, Lee referred me to some of his work. I read a long forum post on something about how boring his job can be and the aggravations that ensue when working with the public. The forum post had me literally laughing out loud. His style was exactly what I wanted for NSS, the kind of articles you'd find in playboy but sports-based. There was only one snag in the whole plan...
After I expressed my interest in bringing Calvin on-board, Lee informed me that he was a Los Angeles Lakers die-hard. This was before the whole point, counter-point segments you see on today's Celtics blogs. Most bloggers at that time were outraged at the thought of giving a LAKERS FAN a forum to write about his team and the Boston Celtics.
My perspective was, why not?
During the heart of the Celtics - Lakers rivalry rebirth (2008 thru 2010) , there was nothing more interesting to me than reading what Lakers' fans thought of us. After bring brought on to write, it didn't take Calvin long to inform Celtics-Nation what Lakers-Nation thought of us and, thus, the Celtics blog-o-shere was outraged - I loved it.
To date, my favorite article ever published on North Station Sports, Celtics Late Night Show OR CLNS Radio, remains Calvin's I hate the Celtics. Still posting on NSS back then, this column created an amazing buzz outrage among Celtics fans and bloggers. The flood of comments on the column were quite amusing. Unfortunately, the comments on the original piece did not make the (two) migrations since is was composed. However, after reading the column, you can imagine how enraged the readers were.
I loved it, and at the moment, I knew Calvin was the right choice for our first addition to the NSS writing staff.
He's remained with me ever since and I am fortunate. Calvin has made the jump from North Station Sports to NBA Primetime to Celtics Late Night Show dot com, to his current home at CLNS. Additionally, Calvin is now working with me on a new project. This time, writing about pop-culture, film, music, TV, etc on Beats & Eats. He is now one of our most popular on-air personalities for the Celtics Post Game Show and actually very much respected by Celtics-Nation, an community that wanted him exiled back in 2009.
People often ask me, what does CLNS stand for? I usually respond, do you know what ESPN stands for?
Truth is, the casual CLNS reader/listener has no clue that CLNS is an acronym for 'Celtics Late Night Show'. The podcast that started it all was the Celtics Late Night Show, a broadcast that originally aired on Sunday night's at 11 pm, EST-- thus the 'Late' was placed in the name of the podcast. Just 8 episodes into the new, struggling podcast, we had featured such notable blogger as Howard the Duck, John Karalis of Red's Army, Jon Duke of Celtics Stuff Live and Jeff Clark of CelticsBlog. Our callers and chat-room attendees were the most ravenous of Celtics fans, such as KWAPT, Mike Robbo, Nate from Australia, Sana Beans and Thirsty Boots. What was to occur in our 8th episode, a post-game show for a Celtics - Hawks game, would forever change the Celtics Late Night Show and CLNS Radio.
Scotty's first-ever appearance on the Celtics Late Night Show
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As you can hear from Scotty's call, when he told us who he was, a brief silence over-took the air-waves. My former co-hosts, Brandon Paul (B-Paul) and Travis Hilden were clicking away at the key-board in the host chat-room. We couldn't believe that the star of Return to the Rafters was on our show! Scotty quickly took over the show for the first of many rants on CLNS. His inaugural rant during this post game show lasted around 15 minutes and was epic.
We realized then that Scotty had the potential to be a major part of our new show, however, being brand new to podcasting, Brandon, Travis nor myself knew how to control the guy, how to reel him in. What did we do? We made him part of the team.
Offering Scotty a 5 minute, pre-recorded segment on every Celtics Late Night Show, the Scottish Torture Chamber* was born and Munger became a regular contributor.
That's the story of how both of these guys, from polar opposites of the NBA fan world, became "co-workers" on CLNS Radio. Over the years, the heated battles continued, got more heated (and funny) and yet, the two guys have gained a respect for one-another.
The 2013-14 Boston Celtics season has been full of frustrations, losing and a split fanbase, Our listeners (and hosts) have found themselves bored of losing and relegated to the same debates night in and night out. I think Celtics-Nation has had their fill of Jeff Green debates, Rajon Rondo trade rumors, Brad Stevens grading and the whole 'tank' strategy is completely worn out.
Matt Rury, Producer of the Celtics Post Game Show, had a brilliant idea to shake things up on Saturday night. He purposely scheduled Munger and Chamberlain to host one of the final post game shows of the season. The show was actually better than the Celtics - Pistons game - no shock there. The call-lines were ablaze with familiar callers and new callers, giving their opinion on either side of the many arguments that took place during the 90-minute, must-listen, broadcast.
If you missed Saturday's show, here it is again. Enjoy the ranting - it's well worth the listen.
* To see/hear the Scottish Torture Chamber, you must text "CLNSFans" to 22828 and we'll email you the private YouTube video - it's worth it!