Still on the air after 25 years, Fox 5’s Russ
Salzberg is the last in a memorable generation
of metro-area sports anchors. BY PETE CROATTO
MED I A ON DECK: Veteran sports anchor Russ Salzberg makes a last-minute check of his notes before deliv- ering a recent sports report for Fox 5.
T’S A SLOW MONDAY IN
mid-Septem-ber on the metro-area sports beat.
The Yankees, still clinging to their
playoff hopes, have the day off. The
Mets, as is their habit, are a million miles
from contending. The football Giants’
dismantling the day before by the Denver Broncos is old news; the Jets’ sloppy
Thursday-night loss is fish wrap. Hockey
and basketball won’t start for weeks.
This lull in the action will not do for
Russ Salzberg. Not at all.
“Sitting at a job and just being bored,
that’s why you want to retire,” says the Fox
5 sports anchor. “It’s a very good feeling to
wake up every day and want to go to work,
and at the end of the day, it’s great to feel
like you’re really satisfied and fulfilled.”
Most days, the longtime Wayne resi-
dent has plenty to keep him satisfied. In
addition to his Monday-to-Friday Fox gig,
Salzberg hosts postgame coverage of the
Giants for sister station My9; contributes
nightly highlights and commentary to
My9’s magazine-style Chasing New Jer-
sey; and hosts Fox 5’s Super Football Fri-
day, a preview show leading up to Febru-
ary’s Super Bowl at MetLife Stadium.
A 12-hour workday is Salzberg’s idea of
fun. He craves action. Even after 25 years
of recapping results in an engaging Guys
and Dolls accent that betrays his Brooklyn
roots, the 62-year-old loves the perpetual
motion that—usually—is New York sports.
When he made his New York debut
on October 3, 1988, on WWOR/Channel
9, each local station laid claim to its own
sports guy. Warner Wolf went to the vid-eotape on Channel 2, while Len Berman
spanned the world on 4, where Sal Marchi-ano was a weekend presence. Scott Clark’s
lengthy reign at Channel 7 was under way.
The aforementioned anchors all were
saluted last year, when veteran New York
sports PR agent Marty Appel helped produce a “sort of farewell to those days” panel
discussion at the 21 Club in Manhattan. Sal-