Dean Blundell, the shock jock who was fired by Toronto radio station The Edge 102.1 a year ago after making comments deemed to be homophobic, will be the co-host of the morning show of The Fan 590, Rogers Communications's flagship Toronto sports radio station.
Blundell & Co., launching on March 2, will feature the controversial personality with current Fan host Andrew Walker. It will air weekdays 5:30 to 9 a.m. ET, and be heard nationally.
Mr. Walker's current co-host, Greg Brady, will take over the 1-to-4 p.m. ET slot as the hosts currently occupying that time period, Tim Micallef and Sid Seixeiro, move to Sportsnet's TV properties.
The move marks a full-time return to radio for Mr. Blundell, who frequently ran afoul of regulators during his 13-year run as the morning man on The Edge. In the September, 2013, episode that led to his ouster, he and co-host Derek Welsman made crude jokes about a sexual-assault court case in which Mr. Welsman was the jury foreman. Corus Entertainment, parent company of The Edge, announced that it was "offended and disappointed" by the incident, and fired Mr. Welsman.
Mr. Blundell apologized, but was later suspended and then fired.
His show had been censured six times by the Canadian Broadcast Standards Council in 2012 and 2013 for offensive speech about homosexuals, for trivializing tragedy, for promoting violence and for other behaviour the panel deemed inappropriate.
Last spring, Mr. Blundell launched a podcast in which he and guests frequently bantered in language that might have made the CBSC panelists blanch. It comes after a tryout for Mr. Blundell on The Fan last May.
At the time, the vice-president of programming for Rogers Radio said she was not concerned about the possibility of Blundell stepping over the line.
"Rogers has a zero tolerance in regards to discrimination, and our track record speaks to that, and we wouldn't have him in if we felt there was going to be any risk to our reputation regarding that," Julie Adam told The Globe and Mail.
"Really, our reason for having him in is to come in and do an entertaining sports show, and we will see what happens after that."
She added: "We know Dean, we know he's a big sports fan, he's very knowledgeable about sports, and we know he likes to talk about sports."
The Fan has a seven-second delay that allows producers to prevent offensive speech from getting to air.