Craig Carton, Former Drive-Time Partner of Boomer Esiason, Released From Prison. Could He Return to WFAN?

By Scott Mandel, NY Post

Now that Craig Carton is out of prison, he should be back on the radio, according to his former partner at WFAN, Boomer Esiason.

The 51-year-old Carton was released early from prison on Tuesday after serving just over a year of a 3 ½-year sentence for his role in a ticket scam that also cost him his job at the radio station.

“He deserves another chance, in my eyes,” Esiason said on his WFAN show on Wednesday. “Whatever issues we had after this whole thing went down, they’re gone. As far as i’m concerned, they’re gone.”

The Post’s Andrew Marchand reported that Carton may have a path back to WFAN now that Chris Oliviero, his former producer, is running Entercom’s New York stations.

Carton was replaced by Gregg Giannotti and Esiason and Giannotti are expected to stay together, but other spots could open for Carton at the station.

Esiason said he heard from Carton shortly after he was released from prison.

“I get off the radio [Tuesday], I see a number pop up on my screen,” Esiason said. “I’m thinking, ‘Is this spam? What is this? I answer the phone, I say hello [and] i hear a very familiar voice saying, ‘Hey, it’s me. I’m out.’”

Carton’s release was unrelated to the coronavirus pandemic.

“What I heard was a happy and relieved Craig Carton,” Esiason said. “He did everything he possibly could in jail to mitigate his sentence and try to get out as early as he possibly could.”

Carton will either enter home confinement or a halfway house to finish out his sentence, according to sources.

“Now the real work begins for him and that’s rebuilding his life,” Esiason said. “He paid his debt to society.”

And Esiason is looking forward to hearing Carton back on the air.

“I do believe he deserves a second chance, whether it be here at our station or another station,” Esiason said. “He’s too talented not to be on the air somewhere.”

Esiason said he and Giannotti would remain a team and he didn’t expect to work with Carton again.

“Of course, when you talk about this show and moving on and me being here, it’s probably and most likely not going to be here,” Giannotti said. “But that doesn’t mean it can’t be on the radio station years down the road somewhere else. But i’m happy that he’s out and i’m happy he’s going to get another opportunity.”

WFAN Sports Radio in New York Fires Afternoon Host, Chris Carlin. Was Mike Francesa Behind It?

by Scott Mandel,

Chris Carlin, a long-time producer and most recently, a co-host of the CMB afternoon show at WFAN Sports radio in New York City, has suddenly left the station. There are unconfirmed reports he was informed his expiring contract, which runs through December, would not be renewed.

His partners, Maggie Gray and Bart Scott (the M and the B in CMB) are being retained and the show re-named, Maggie and Bart.

There may be a back story here that won’t be coming into the light of day for awhile but there has been speculation that Mike Francesa, the 65-year old afternoon drive time host at the station since 1987, may have been behind Carlin’s firing.

Carlin began his career at the FAN as the producer for the legendary Mike and the Mad Dog show, in which Francesa and his on-air partner, Chris Russo, essentially invented the daily sports talk format which has been copied all over the country.

I’ve known Carlin for 17 years, since we were on the football Giants beat, sitting shoulder to shoulder in the Giants Stadium press room. He is a salt of the earth guy who, even as he stepped away, kept his comments brief and above board.

Carlin tweeted this on Wednesday, and has not had further comment, at this point:

Carlin declined to comment further when contacted by Newsday and also declined to comment on the timing of the move and whether it was his decision for him to leave immediately or the station’s.

His contract was due to expire at the end of the year, and he already had been told that his option under the existing contract terms would not be picked up. But until this week it appeared the station might let things ride until December.

Radio stations often are reluctant to allow lame ducks to remain on the air, so WFAN’s parent company, Entercom, may have decided to let Carlin go sooner rather than later. Also, Thursday is the start of the autumn ratings book

“We can confirm that Chris Carlin is no longer with WFAN,” an Entercom spokeswoman said. “We appreciate his many contributions and wish him all the best.”