Rod Allen, Mario Impemba allegedly fight after disagreement over chair in Tigers broadcast booth

Sources tell Local 4 that Allen choked Impemba from behind

DETROIT – The 16-year run of Detroit Tigers television broadcasters Mario Impemba and Rod Allen is reportedly in serious jeopardy.

UPDATE: Rod Allen and Mario Impemba not scheduled for anymore Tigers telecasts this season

ORIGINAL STORY: Sources: Rod Allen choked Mario Impemba after disagreement over chair in Tigers broadcast booth

On Wednesday, Matt Shepherd and Kirk Gibson called the Tigers game. Sources told Local 4 this was because Allen attacked Impemba following the broadcast Tuesday night on Fox Sports Detroit.

"The first thing I wake up to is 'Rod and Mario got into a fight' and then I kind of thought, 'Well, I've heard they've had ongoing feuds back and forth over the years,'" said Tigers fan Chris Hochradel. "I didn't think it would develop to the whole fisticuffs thing, but it was pretty funny."

Tom Shaer, Allen's agent, called the allegations false and released the following statement to WDIV regarding the incident:

"We have not commented because Fox Sports Detroit is handling this professionally and thoroughly. But these ridiculous, blatantly false descriptions require me to speak the truth and say they are utter fabrications. Nobody followed anybody, there was no contact from behind, and a "choke hold" is a shamefully untrue way to describe anything which occurred in that very brief altercation.

Anonymous fabrications by others do injustice to the very concepts of fairness and professionalism. Those who give such gross untruths to media should be ashamed of themselves."

What happened Tuesday night is still under investigation by Fox Sports Detroit.

Sources told Local 4 that Impemba left the broadcast booth at some point and Allen followed, assaulting Impemba from behind and choking him.

Viewers might not have noticed anything unusual during the game, but listening to the broadcast after the fact, one can pick out several long silences later in the game, including a 43-second stretch in the bottom of the sixth inning during which there is no talking.

Allen and Impemba are in their 17th season as a duo. It's unclear whether both will continue and whether both will be there for the upcoming games against St. Louis and the celebration of the 1968 World Series.

Allen tweeted about the incident. He didn't confirm or deny that a fight occurred, but stated he was keeping thins quiet to remain professional.

Allen is partially known for his involvement in a bizarre fight while playing Japanese baseball. He chased a pitcher across the entire field after being hit in a game.


About the Authors:

Derick is a Senior Web Producer for ClickOnDetroit and has been with Local 4 News since April 2013. Derick specializes in breaking news, crime and local sports.