The Boston Globe reports ESPN Radio’s Boston affiliate, WAMG-AM 890, will go off the air today after four years plagued by a weak signal and limited local programming—as well trying to compete with Entercom’s high-rated WEEI network sports franchise in that market. WAMG, O&O’d by investment firm WallerSutton, is expected to switch formats, though one source at the station told the paper employees were not told what the plan was and there is some belief that the signal will go dark—the path of many other AMs these days.
But ESPN, the powerhouse sports network, may not lack an outlet in the Boston market for long. According to the story, ESPN is in discussions to air some of its programming on WEEI nights and weekends, with WEEI intending to move to an FM station within months (Entercom also owns WAAF 97.7/107.3, and Mike 93.7). ESPN Radio would then take over the 850 spot on the dial. The new ESPN 850 would then be affiliated with the ESPN Boston website, which also launches today (9/14).
This development adds to the recent frenzy in Boston sports radio when CBS Radio’s “98.5 The Sports Hub’’ launched on WBZ’s FM signal in August.