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Peter Boyles makes KNUS debut, says he can't legally talk about delay

Update: Yesterday at this time, we reported that Peter Boyles, who was fired at KHOW following an incident with his longtime producer, would tentatively debut Wednesday on a new station, 710 KNUS, after the program failed to launch on its planned date, Monday, July 1; see our previous coverage below.

No need for the word "tentatively" now. Teased by a musical intro featuring Eminem's "My Name Is," Boyles appeared on KNUS at 6 a.m. sharp -- but without revealing the reasons behind the delay.

There were plenty of online indications that Boyles would be behind the microphone this a.m. KNUS' website, which had removed references to the host on Monday, shared the following image....

...and this schedule: By the way, Steve Kelley, whose Kelley & Company program is moving from the mornings to the afternoons due to Boyles's arrival, is said to be under the weather -- the reason why he won't be heard at 1 p.m. today.

In addition, KNUS' Facebook page posted a graphic....

...that fans immediately (and correctly) interpreted as a teaser for Boyles.

Still, those who tuned moments ago hoping that Boyles would reveal why he didn't start broadcasting for KNUS on Monday were disappointed. While chatting with a flurry of congratulatory callers, he said, "There are some legal things that have occurred that I'm really not able to talk about."

Minutes later, he added, "I have a lot of constraints, things I can't talk about, but it's been an interesting couple of days."

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No doubt listeners will interpret these remarks as indicating that Clear Channel, his former employer, had threatened action against him if he took to the airwaves, even though any non-compete clause in his contract had presumably expired. The contract lapsed shortly before he was fired for yanking a lanyard around the neck of producer Greg Hollenback -- an action that left red marks.

Rather than dishing behind-the-scenes dirt, Boyles chose to stir the political pot, announcing that his first guest would be Republican gubernatorial candidate Tom Tancredo -- who happened to be his last visitor on KHOW. In response to a caller who noted ruefully that Tancredo's critics think he's crazy, Boyles said, "If he's crazy, so what. We need crazy people."

That's the kind of comment calculated to get people talking.

Continue for our previous coverage. Update, 7:16 a.m July 2: At 6 a.m. yesterday, fans of Peter Boyles, who was fired at KHOW following an incident with his longtime producer, eagerly tuned in for what they thought would be his first show on a new station, 710 KNUS. But he didn't appear and declined to talk about why not amid rumors that Clear Channel Denver, his previous employer, had managed to at least temporarily block his bow. Now, however, a reliable source tells us that Boyles is tentatively slated to debut on KNUS at 6 a.m. tomorrow morning, July 3.

Our source stresses the word "tentatively," suggesting that either a further delay is possible or KNUS managers don't want to guarantee his presence only to have another obstacle pop up. If all goes well, however, Boyles will be back behind the microphone at this time tomorrow and will hopefully share the reasons why day one of his latest broadcast incarnation didn't happen.

Continue for our previous coverage.

Original post, 6:39 a.m. July 1: On Friday, we shared the news that Peter Boyles, who was fired at KHOW following an incident with his longtime producer, would be making his debut with a new station, 710 KNUS, this morning at 6 a.m. But when the time came, Boyles didn't take to the airwaves.

Why not? We just spoke with Boyles, and he offered no comment. His silence will no doubt fuel speculation that his appearance has been blocked by Clear Channel, owner of KHOW and his previous employer. But the one executive there that we've been able to reach this morning has no answers.

Greg Foster, vice president of programming for Clear Channel's Denver branch, is out of town. But despite the early hour, we got in touch with Dan Mandis, program director for KHOW. The quote he offered us: "I don't know what happened."

In the meantime, Boyles's name has been removed from the KNUS website, as has that of Steve Kelley, whose Kelley and Company show was set to move to afternoons in order to make room for Boyles.

Could the Boyles deal have fallen apart without any interference from Clear Channel? Certainly. But it's fairly common for radio contracts to include what's called a non-compete clause, which prevents personalities from immediately jumping to another station. Instead, they mandate a delay before such a move can be made.

As Boyles explained to us in last week's interview, his contract had just expired when he was fired -- and he was told he wouldn't be able to file for unemployment, because Clear Channel would argue that he had been dismissed due to workplace violence. He admitted to grabbing the lanyard of producer Greg Hollenback during a late May program, resulting in red marks on Hollenback's neck.

In any event, what promised to be a memorable morning for Denver talk radio just turned into a mystery.

More from our Media archive: "Peter Boyles on his firing and return Monday on 710 KNUS."

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