Neil Best leaves no stone unturned in the world of sports media.

Mike Francesa admits future with Chris Russo is murky

(Credit: Watchdog)

Click below for the complete transcript of Mike Francesa's on-air remarks at about 1:25 p.m. Friday, the first time he has offered his take on my story last Sunday that the "Mike and the Mad Dog" show could be through by Labor Day and Chris Russo's comments Monday.

At times Francesa sounded like he was giving the first draft of the show's obituary. Wow.

Like he said . . . should be an interesting summer.Mike Francesa on WFAN/YES Friday:

Dog got it in his lap on Monday. I made sure I was near a TV at 1 o’clock when he came on. I thought he handled it well. Everything he said as far as the relationship was true. You know, we’ve been together 19 years. That’s a long time. And in a very visible position for 19 years, so we’ve kind of carried on this relationship in a very public way, so that when there’s been fights they’ve been made public and when there’s been battles they’ve been made public.

Now there haven’t been many in recent years. The last bad one before this was probably about eight years ago. I think it was in 2000 we had a bad one. And I’d say in the last 19 years we’ve probably had four or five bad ones. This one was pretty bad.

He gave you the timetable. I would say we did have a meeting in May where we decided we had maybe carried it onto the air and we were not being very professional so we apologized. He apologized, I apologized, because I thought I had handled myself terribly. I apologized for that. I thought I carried it onto the air and was very unprofessional, which is something I don’t want to ever try to be.

When you do this this long, you are going to have problems. I think we’ve patched it up on the air. Have we patched it up off the air? Not really, to any real extent. I’ll give you an example: We haven’t spoken this week. So that should give you an indication. With everything that’s going on, we haven’t spoken this week. So I think that’s a pretty good indication of where we are right now.

Um, about everything else and all the conjecture, I haven’t spoken to anybody else about that. I haven’t spoken to anybody about the story. I’ve had plenty of requests about it this week. I would just say this: In 20 years of being here – I came to the station in ’87, I’ve been with Dog since ’89 – I have never, not once, discussed my contractual relationship with FAN publicly. Not on the air, not in the newspapers. I’ve never negotiated publicly, I’ve never negotiated on the air, I’ve never negotiated in the newspaper.

I’ve had a great relationship with the station. I’ve never had any contract battle in 20 years. I’ve had four or five contracts. They’ve all been handled very, very well. I’ve never had a bad day with them in 20 years. So I’ve never discussed that and I never will. So I have no interest in discussing my contractual situation and where it is or will I ever do that publicly.

As far as the “Mike and the Mad Dog’’ program and where everybody thinks it may be going, all I will say is this: You know, we’ve done 19 years together, which is a very long time. We’ve had a lot of different things happen in our lives. We’ve had seven kids in recent years. You go through a lot of changes, a lot of things happen, a lot of things are said.

You don’t know everything that’s going to happen day to day. Life’s not that predictable. Nothing is that predictable that you know there are any certainties of what’s going to happen day to day. I would say this: I think our relationship would never be a sole reason that we would ever part. I don’t think it would ever reach that level. I think we could always work well together. I think we’ve worked well together.

I think even our most severe critic would say that we have produced something pretty special over the last 19 years, pretty special and pretty successful and pretty special. It’s something that I’m proud of and I hope he’s proud of.

Where it goes from here, I’m not sure. I think, to be fair with the audience, I think we have reached a crossroad. I think we’re at a crossroad. I think this will play out over the summer and we’ll see what happens. I’m not going to sit here and say something couldn’t change. Maybe it does, maybe it doesn’t. I don’t know that yet. If it does I will be very proud of everything we accomplished here. And if it doesn’t we’ll be back and do hopefully 19 or 20 more years together. I don’t know, you know?

I don’t know how long is long enough, you know? You wait and see how it happens. Would I guarantee anything? No. Would I make any declarations today? No. Eventually all things have to pass. If we’re at that time, I’m not sure. We’ll see what happens. It’ll be an interesting summer. Next, Met baseball.

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