Check it out!
- By FRANK JUZENAS
Hoops junkies host NBA show
NBA BREAKDOWN. Dave Mendonca, (left) and Audley Stephenson are the hosts of the Internet show NBA Breakdown which returns for a third season on Sunday. Since its debut two years ago the show has earned listeners in more than 100 countries. Photo by George Beshiri
For the past two years the two Brampton men have been the hosts of NBA Breakdown a live call-in Internet show. The one-hour show, broadcast at 9 p.m. on Sundays will begin its third season this coming Sunday, just in time for the start of another NBA season.
The list of past guests is impressive including legends like Dominque Wilkins, Rick Barry, former NBA slam dunk champion Spud Webb, Toronto Raptors head coach Jay Triano and the late Wayman Tisdale. Equally impressive is that their website has had visitors from more than 100 countries who love the banter between the two and their knowledge, with a lot of the feedback coming from the U.S.
“People have said they can’t believe this show about basketball is coming from Toronto, Canada,’’ said Stephenson whose love of the game is so strong he has taken a part-time job at the Air Canada Centre, he says so he can watch basketball.
Mendonca, 33, attended Cardinal Leger Secondary School in Brampton and has a successful career as an interviewer and reporter, on television and radio, and publications around the world. Besides doing sports reports for The Score television network, he has also interviewed the likes of singer Beyonce Knowles, Academy-Award winning actor Jamie Foxx, NBA all-star Jason Kidd and hockey’s Wayne Gretzky.
Stephenson, 38, is a professional speaker and author who has led leadership skills workshops for young people. The two met about 10 years ago at The Score where Mendonca was a reporter and Stephenson was an intern. While they went different ways they got back in touch a few years ago. Originally they thought about doing a show about celebrity lifestyle but decided that wouldn’t work so why not talk about something they both love, the NBA. Their show has gotten a response from listeners, either those who listen live or have heard interviews through their archives.
“Sports is something that people get passionate about,’’ said Stephenson.
While they have interviewed basketball players, coaches and broadcasters, they have also had some non-basketball related guests, such as singer Brian McKnight and actress Vivica A. Fox.
“We’ve had non-sports people but they have to have an interest in basketball,” said Mendonca.
A lot of basketball fans say they find it difficult to get information about their sport and Stephenson hopes their show will help those who are starved for information.
Stephenson gets excited thinking about some of the shows they have done.
“We interviewed Kevin Johnson who played for the Phoenix Suns one month after he was inaugurated as the Mayor of Sacramento. We interviewed Wayman Tisdale, an NBA player who had both legs amputated and became a jazz musician two months before he died,” he said.
Mendonca jokes that Stephenson enjoyed meeting the glamorous Fox.
“That was the only time I’ve ever heard him speechless,” he said.
The two will often argue but they remain good friends and there are a lot of light moments which makes the show popular.
With the start of another season a week away you can expect a lot of talk from the two about the Miami Heat, who made plenty of news off-season and Stephenson said that team will no doubt be the biggest story of the upcoming season.
“Can you image what will happen when they lose three games in a row?” said Stephenson.
Former Raptor Sharone Wright has joined the NBA Breakdown as a regular contributor.
Local fans should also get plenty of talk regarding the Raptors. On their blog they have an offer to purchase Raptors tickets at discounted prices. Fans can access that at
They also have put together a segment on The Top 10 Reasons Fans Should Watch the Toronto Raptors this season which can be found by going to http://thenbabreakdown.blogspot.com/2010/09/top-10-reasons-why-fans-should-support.html.
To listen to their third season debut Sunday at 9 p.m. go to http://www.blogtalkradio.com/thenbabreakdown.
The show will continue weekly through out the season.