If you want to travel back in time to experience how awful Dave O’Brien’s commentary was during ESPN’s 2006 World Cup, just switch on the English SAP option for any MLS game televised on UniMas every Friday night. You’ll soon get an idea of how bad it was.
Although it’s hard to believe given how horrible baseball announcer O’Brien was doing soccer, Univision’s commentary duo of Ramses Sandoval and Paul Caligiuri are actually even worse than the man who kept calling Golden Balls “Michael Beckham” during an England 2006 game. And that’s saying a lot.
It’s one thing to bring a Latin flavor to English commentary, but it’s another thing entirely when you don’t know whether to shake your head in disbelief or erupt in laughter when you hear the words coming out of their mouths.
Plus, you know the commentary is bad when it has its own Twitter hashtag (#MLSSAP).
Some of the recent commentary gaffes from Sandoval and Caligiuri have included:
1. Mixing up Mix Diskerud. You’d think it wouldn’t be that tough to pronounce the New York City FC midfielder’s name correctly, but the Univision duo managed to butcher it by calling him “Dix Miskrut.”
2. White bullets and green rectangles. Sandoval has a tendency to describe shots as “white bullets” and the field as a “green rectangle.” Welcome to Planet Sandoval.
3. Say what? Sometimes the duo of Sandoval and Caligiuri will say things that make you scratch your head. Two recent examples are “The Fire control with the tiki taka. The here, the there. The up and down,” and “In Trinidad they breed these skillful players like Jones.”
4. Calling Orlando City’s stadium “the Orange Citrus Bowl.” The correct name is the Citrus Bowl. There once was an Orange Bowl stadium in Miami, but that was demolished in 2008.
The list goes on and on.
Thankfully, there are alternatives such as a new website called Rabble.tv. Rabble is a brand-new kind of television experience where you’re in charge of the audio. So for the next MLS game on Univision, you can mute the TV, head over to Rabble.tv and then listen to a real fan’s broadcast instead of the announcers on TV. Best of all, it’s free.
Plus with Rabble, if you want to announce a game yourself, it’s really easy to create your own broadcast. All you need is a computer, a mic and a passion for the sport.