ESPN’s Mike Greenberg spoke about the end of the "Mike and Mike" show.
About 10 years ago, Mike Greenberg told Golf Digest that breaking 80 was among the top three things he hoped to accomplish before he died. (The top two: family happiness and seeing cancer cured.)
Greenberg has scooted under that limbo bar, even shooting a 77 at Muirfield in Scotland. But at times the game still makes him go batty. Monday was one of those times.
During a skills challenge at Olympia Fields featuring Phil Mickelson and LPGA stars Stacy Lewis, Lydia Ko and Brooke Henderson, Greenberg grabbed a wedge and tried to hit a 40-yard chip into a square target. As Bon Jovi would sing, it made it halfway there.
Greenberg was ticked enough to try again after the pros had cleared the stage. And again. And again.
"Someone take this (club) away from me before I hurt someone," he fumed.
Greenberg’s short game might stink, but in the long run he is #winning. The Northwestern alumnus recently signed a contract with ESPN that pays him a reported $6.5 million a year for a new solo show, breaking free from his "Mike & Mike" radio partnership with Mike Golic.
Sports Illustrated’s Richard Deitsch reported last month that Greenberg’s impending departure had caused off-air tension between the two. Greenberg tried to clear the air during an interview with the Tribune:
What should we know about the breakup of "Mike & Mike"? What all happened?
I know what was said, but the truth of the matter is Mike and I are fine. I was in Malibu for 11 days in the beginning of this month shooting "Battle of the Network Stars." During that time, I probably spoke to Mike five times. Once was about his son (Jake’s) wedding, which is next month; one was about my son’s graduation; and a few of them were about TV stars that I knew he would be excited I was hanging out with. So we’re doing fine; that’s it.
Are you still invited to his son’s wedding?
Yes, I am. We are very much looking forward to going. I’ve said to him, "I need to start to practice my drinking." I’m really worried. I don’t know how much time you’ve ever spent around Golic, but I’m a little worried about getting completely drunk under the table. I may have to come up for air long before anyone in their family does.
What is your drink of choice?
Belvedere vodka, but their drink of choice generally is beer and lots of it, so we’ll see. All kidding aside, I’ve known Jake Golic since he was 11 years old. He’s a great kid, he’s marrying a terrific girl. I’m 49 years old. I’ve never met a closer family than the Golics, which is a testament to Mike and (wife) Chris.
The joke I used to make was that Mike Golic’s kids have cost me a fortune because we kept turning things down. We had all these opportunities, but Mike (Jr.) had a football game, Jake had this or Sydney had a swim meet. But I always said that jokingly because it is a testament to his dedication as a parent.
People never talk about this, but Mike Golic was (calling) the Saturday night ESPN2 college football game, prime-time game, which is a huge, glamorous assignment. He gave that up because he didn’t want to miss his kids’ high school games. That’s the reality, and I learned all that from him. Their wedding is like the biggest deal, and I am thrilled. I am kvelling, to use a term they wouldn’t.
I know how to spell that.
I’m looking forward to that and looking forward to five more months of whatever (our show) turns out to be, us having fun, and then I move on to a new challenge, he moves on to a new challenge and I think we’re both going to do great.
Sonny and Cher broke up. Phil and Bones (Mackay) split. Is it just the natural progression? Things don’t last forever?
By the time this year’s over, we’ll have been together 18 years. That almost never happens. I’m endlessly grateful to him and to everyone who gave us the opportunities to have the career we’ve had. None of this would’ve happened for me otherwise.
I’m sitting here on this train with Phil Mickelson, flying out here on his plane, doing fun stuff in the street, or playing tennis with Chris Evert, or singing "Take Me Out to the Ball Game" at Wrigley Field, or any of the things that I’ve done. I’ve met three presidents, and none of that would’ve happened if it hadn’t been for "Mike & Mike," so I’m unimaginably grateful for what we’ve had and what we’ve done.
Trey Wingo is going to be joining Golic. What can you tell us about your new project?
I’m going to do a TV-only show on ESPN starting Jan. 1. We’re putting together a cast that I’ll be working with, and we’ll be a little more TV-centric. At its core, "Mike & Mike" has been a radio show. Along the line, television become a priority but not the priority. Everything always had to be radio-friendly; you couldn’t do anything visual. So I’m looking forward to being able to play a little with that because right now, anything we do with visual, I have to try to describe it for the listening audience. Otherwise, you’re alienating half of your audience that is listening to you on the radio.
Does the show have a name yet?
No. If you can come up with one, I would appreciate it. We’ve gone back and forth about 8 million times but have not come up with a name yet. You know, I have three books.
Yeah, "Why My Wife Thinks I’m an Idiot."
Yes, and two others ("All You Could Ask For" and "My Father’s Wives"). The titles are always the hardest part. Writing the book was easier than coming up with the name. In none of the three instances did I come up with the title. So I’m waiting for someone to give me the title. So if you have an idea of what it should be called …
This is going out to millions of readers …
I’m @espngreeny. Please have them @ me with what the title of the show should be.
Photos from the Pro-Am ahead of the 2017 KPMG Women’s PGA Championship held at Olympia Fields Country Club on June 27, 2017.