It’s wonderfully appropriate that Don Taylor and Rick Dhaliwal are launching their new sports talk show by naming their studio after the late Paul Carson — one of the greats of sports broadcasting in British Columbia.
Donnie and Dhali – The Team runs from 10 a.m. to noon Monday to Friday from the newly christened Paul Carson Studio, located at Oh Boy Productions in Vancouver.
Sports broadcasting owes a huge debt to Carson, who began his career at CHEK, working at the station for five years before moving to CKVU in Vancouver.
WATCH/LISTEN LIVE: Donnie and Dhali – The Team, 10 a.m. to noon
It was there he launched Sports Page, the iconic show that was required watching for 25 years, both on ‘VU then CHEK.
Taylor worked with Carson on the Page and says “everything I have in this great life I owe in one way or another to Paul Carson.”
Carson was also one of the masterminds between the Team 1040 all-sports radio station, and Dhaliwal worked with him there.
“I am so happy our new studio will carry his name. Paul was a pioneer for all sports radio and television in our province,” says Dhaliwal.
That’s true. The outpouring of emotion and affection for Carson when he lost his battle against pancreatic cancer at the age of 60 was palpable.
He wasn’t just a visionary and a fantastic broadcaster, but also the perfect gentleman, a supportive coworker and mentor to many, He was also a regular guy — a family man — and his authenticity shone through and set the stage for the success of both Sports Page and Team 1040.
There was also a fast, often anarchic sense of humour, something that Taylor and Dhaliwal have in their DNA. Sports talk is one of the most passionate of endeavours, and fans are more opinionated and passionate about the subject than any political aficionado.
I was on a planning call for Donnie and Dhaliwal the other week, and it was one of the most entertaining Zoom calls I’ve been on in many months. Taylor and Dhaliwal and their producer Ryan Henderson interact at the speed of sound, with zingers and put-downs and affectionate, self-deprecating humour.
And, yes, the anarchy and the humour and the passion are what make sports talk so much fun.
Carson made sure “local” was at the heart of what the Page was all about, something that makes huge sense on the West Coast. Taylor, Dhaliwal and Henderson are a home team. The focus will be on the Canucks, because they’re always top of mind with most sports fans, but they can move knowledgeably around West Coast franchises, from the Lions to the Whitecaps and minor leagues.
Carson made sure personality was at the heart of great sports broadcasting, and that’s what we’ll get with Dhaliwal and Taylor. They’ll fly by the seat of their pants, and have fun doing it — and make sure the viewers and listeners have a fun ride too.
Which, frankly, is the perfect antidote to all the bad news going around right now.
Carson leaves a fantastic legacy. Kudos to Donnie and Rick and CHEK for ensuring he’s remembered as one of the sporting greats.
Donnie and Dhali – The Team airs Monday to Friday from 10 to noon on CHEK TV and also available on multiple platforms including CHEKNews.ca, as a live on-demand podcast on Apple, Spotify and other podcast providers.
Ian Haysom is consulting editor with CHEK Media.