Rochester sportscaster Bill Pucko out
(June 21, 2010) For 20 years, Bill Pucko closed his daily sportscast on Time Warner Cable's 24-hour news channel with his signature phrase: "That's YNN sports — for now."
To fans of the Rochester sporting scene, his signoff was probably as well known as Walter Cronkite's legendary "And that's the way it is ..."
But you won't hear Pucko's words any more on YNN. Time Warner terminated his employment on Thursday. The company didn't disclose the reason.
"It's a little scary and I wasn't really prepared for it," Pucko said on Saturday.
Pucko, 58, of Webster was an original member of Time Warner Cable's news team. He left WHEC-TV (Channel 10) in 1990 to be the sports anchor of what was then Greater Rochester Cablevision's 10 O'clock Report. He was on the set when the company made its debut in local news, on April 22, 1990, on cable Channel 5. The channel was known as RNews until last year.
"Bill Pucko's writing and on-air work will be sorely missed by our staff now that he's no longer with the company," said YNN news director Ed Buttaccio.
Buttaccio declined further comment, saying, "I'm not allowed to discuss personnel matters."
Pucko has been seen or heard on Rochester's cable or broadcast stations since September 1980. He worked part-time at WHEC-TV and also worked for WDKY-FM (103.9) before he was hired full-time at Channel10.
"I've got so much Rochester in me, I'd like to try to do something useful, something significant, something that would help someone," Pucko said. "Who knows, it might open the door to do something important."
Pucko received the Gary Smith Award for broadcasting excellence at the Rochester Press and Radio Club Dinner May 12 for the second time in his career. Pucko still writes columns for the Messenger Post newspaper group and his website, BylineSports.com, turns 1 year old in September.
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