Over the past five years, 95.7 The Game has emerged as a legitimate competitor in the Bay Area to KNBR. During that time, talent defections have only occurred on one side. Damon Bruce left KNBR 1050 (Cumulus’ second sports station) to join The Game in January 2013, and Dan Dibley, Mychael Urban, and a couple of contributors left KNBR to sign with 95.7 when the station launched in 2011. At no point did KNBR strike back.
Barrett Sports Media has learned that 95.7 The Game midday host John Lund is leaving to join KNBR 680 where he’ll team with Tom Tolbert in afternoon drive. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Lund has been with The Game since its inception, teaming with Raiders play by play voice Greg Papa in middays. Together they’ve enjoyed consistent ratings success against KNBR’s midday program “Fitz and Brooks”.
The move helps KNBR in a few ways.
First, it provides Tolbert with a host who’s capable of running point, placing him in a position to be able to react, analyze, and utilize his personality more without having to worry about the usual radio formatics.
Secondly, it disrupts The Game’s most successful program. Sources say that consideration is being given to have Greg Papa host the program solo. Although adding a new partner still remains a possibility. A final decision has yet to been made.
The Game did express interest in retaining Lund, but according to sources, the KNBR offer was much stronger. Lund’s contract with The Game expires in July so he’s expected to remain on the radio station until it expires. It remains possible that the two sides could reach an agreement to terminate the partnership sooner.
With Lund coming on board to work with Tolbert, Ray Ratto will no longer be a regular fixture in afternoons on 680. The radio station is said to be interested in keeping him involved as a regular contributor and fill-in host.