December 29, 1960 |
|Professional wrestling career|
Mark Madden (born December 29, 1960) is an American talk-show host from and based in Pittsburgh. He is best known for his work as color commentator for World Championship Wrestling. Madden currently hosts a weekday afternoon show from 3-6 PM on local radio station, 105.9 The X, and serves as a part-time sports columnist for TribLive.
A 1982 graduate of Duquesne University, and member of Tau Kappa Epsilon International Fraternity, Madden wrote for Pro Wrestling Torch from 1992 to 1994 before beginning work as a TV color commentator and magazine writer for World Championship Wrestling. Shortly before Vince McMahon purchased WCW in March 2001, Madden was fired for making disparaging remarks about the company, lobbying for the return of the fired Scott Hall, and disclosing information about the sale of WCW. He spent several years as a regular columnist for Wade Keller's Pro Wrestling Torch Newsletter. He currently writes occasional Editorials for the Wrestlezone.com website, having previously featured on their Chair Shot Reality, weekly discussion show.
Madden has also worked within mainstream sports journalism, including fifteen years at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, where he primarily covered high schools for the paper's suburban sections, as well as stints at the now-defunct Penguins Report and the weekly Pittsburgh City Paper. He subsequently appeared as a featured guest on Action Sports Sunday on WTAE-TV, a half-hour sports discussion show. The Post-Gazette reported on November 17, 2006 that WTAE-TV dropped Mark Madden as a freelance sports commentator on its Sunday night sports show. In 2015, Madden joined WPNT for a nightly televised sports talk show, an edited replay of his radio show.
Madden wrote a weekly column called "Monday Madden" for the Beaver County Times, a Pittsburgh-area newspaper, starting in May 2007; the column continued for over a decade until his departure to work for TribLive in 2018.
In May 2008, Madden was fired from his talk show on Pittsburgh's 1250 ESPN radio station for the following comment: "I'm very disappointed to hear that Senator Ted Kennedy of Massachusetts is near death because of a brain tumor. I always hoped Senator Kennedy would live long enough to be assassinated."
Another area of sports in which Madden is heavily involved is the game of street hockey. Madden runs Street Hockey USA, and is also involved in the American Street Hockey Institute, a non-profit organization dedicated to growing the game of street/dek/ball hockey in America. He has coached numerous National Champion teams over the years (most notably his Pittsburgh Wizards team), as well as coaching the United States Junior team to a gold medal in the 2006 World Junior Championship in Germany.
On April 3, 2011, his Beaver County Times column addressed a then-current grand jury investigation into alleged child sexual abuse by former Penn State football assistant coach Jerry Sandusky, suggesting the possibility of a Penn State cover-up. After Sandusky was indicted on over 40 felony charges, Madden appeared on The Dennis and Callahan Show, a Boston sports talk radio program, on November 10. During his appearance, he reported a rumor being investigated by two prominent columnists that Sandusky and his Second Mile children's charity may have been "pimping out young boys to rich donors."
Madden's views on Pittsburgh's three major professional sports teams are mixed. While Madden staunchly defends the Penguins, he has mixed views about the Pittsburgh Steelers and is harshly critical of the Pittsburgh Pirates. Madden often praises the Rooney family for going all-out to win but questions the team's decisions regarding off-field actions of their players, and is particularly critical of Antonio Brown. With regards to the Pirates, Madden is highly critical of team owner Robert Nutting placing profits ahead of putting a competitive product on the field and is critical of Pirates fans who continuously support the team, feeling that the team will not be consistently a contender unless Nutting sells the team.
Madden claims to be an 'avid' fan of Liverpool F.C. He is also an avid fan of the Pittsburgh Penguins and idolizes Penguins center Mario Lemieux. Late in Lemieux's career, Madden made note of his "repeatedly trying to score directly off faceoffs." He once bet Lemieux $66 that he could not score directly off a draw. Lemieux thought the $66 bet was "cheap," and challenged Madden to a $6,600 bet. Madden accepted, and agreed that all the money would go to the Mario Lemieux Foundation. Lemieux had attempted the shot several times, with the closest effort being a post shot against the Calgary Flames on December 21, 2002. On December 23, 2002, Lemieux lined up against Buffalo Sabres faceoff specialist Chris Gratton. With the Penguins tied 2-2 and Gratton being a left-handed draw, Lemieux used the opportunity to take the shot on net. Lemieux shot the puck as it was dropped, going between Gratton's legs, off defenseman Alexei Zhitnik's skate, and eventually past goaltender Mika Noronen. Lemieux immediately looked to the pressbox, where he knew Madden was watching the game, and raised his arms. Lemieux admitted to trying the shot several times and that it was a tough shot to do without a good bounce. After the goal, Madden said he was planning a telethon to help him raise the $6,600 promised to the Mario Lemieux Foundation.
In addition to his love for the Penguins, Madden is known for his unabashed hate of the Philadelphia Flyers and often pokes fun at the fact that while they were the only Expansion Six team to win a Stanley Cup within the teams' first decade, the Flyers have had lack of success in winning the Cup again (despite regular season and postseason success) while the Penguins have doubled the Flyers in Cup wins. This eventually lead to Madden creating a parody Twitter account "Since Flyers Last Cup", which daily counts how many days it has been since the Flyers last won the Cup. The account became so popular among Penguins fans and non-Flyers fans that the official Flyers Twitter account eventually blocked the "Since Flyers Last Cup" account.
Madden was hospitalized on January 29, 2006 after suffering a heart attack during a dek-hockey tournament in Reading, Pennsylvania. Madden drove himself to a local hospital after feeling nauseated, and had the heart procedure done a day after checking in. He resumed his radio show three days later, although in a different time slot.
- "Mark Madden - 105.9 The X".
- "Mark Madden".
- Rouvalis, Cristina (January 3, 2001). "WCW bosses give Madden the boot". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
- "Tuned In: WPXI serves up burgers, fries with Friday evening newscasts". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. November 17, 2006.
- "TV/radio notes: WPNT-TV adds Mark Madden". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
- "Madden removed from air by ESPN". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. May 28, 2008.
- "Radio Host Fired For Kennedy Murder Quip". CBS News. May 28, 2008.
- "Pittsburgh Post-Gazette - Google News Archive Search". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
- Madden, Mark (April 3, 2011). "Madden: Sandusky a state secret". Beaver County Times. Retrieved November 10, 2011.
- Hurley, Michael (November 10, 2011). "Jerry Sandusky Rumored to Have Been 'Pimping Out Young Boys to Rich Donors,' Says Mark Madden". NESN.com. Retrieved November 10, 2011.
- Dejan Kovacevic (2002-12-24). "Lemieux a bet to convert some magic". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Retrieved 2011-03-11.
- "SinceFlyersLastCup (@SinceFlyersCup)". Twitter.
- "Madden Back On Air After Heart Attack". WTAE.com. 2006-02-03. Archived from the original on 2011-07-18. Retrieved 2011-03-11.
- Molinaro, John F. "Mark Madden fired by WCW". SLAM Wrestling.