Like the Phoenix Suns, the Los Angeles Lakers and the Dallas Mavericks, it's time to shake up TV's starting lineup. And that means some big trades.
With the TV and NBA seasons drawing to a close and the playoffs approaching, everyone wants to score more points.
First on my list is "American Idol." Though the high-rated show is still strong, it has lost some luster. Thus I proposed swapping host Ryan Seacrest (and a producer to be named later) for "Dancing with the Stars"'s Tom Bergeron.
"Idol" audiences are a little tired of Seacrest's needling of Simon Cowell. Old reality-show stuff -- backbiting and grousing -- is out.
"Idol" definitely needs a bit of even-tempered humor, which Bergeron easily delivers as the best reality show host in the business. Just look at how he handles the infighting among Carrie Ann Inaba, Len Goodman, and Bruno Tonioli.
Next, I'd make a big switch at ABC, trading "Lost"'s cleanup hitter Kate (played by Evangeline Lilly) for "Grey's Anatomy" power pitcher Meredith Grey (Ellen Pompeo). Sending Kate off the island will be tricky. But her first stop off that South Pacific island should be to the Pacific Northwest -- to Seattle Grace Hospital.
McDreamy has already put Meredith Grey on hiatus -- just before the writers' strike. Kate's bad-girl character would spice things up a bit. And, hey, doesn't Derek Shepard live in the wilderness in that trailer? Dropping Meredith in on the "Lost" action will be easy. Another doctor will free Jack to explore.
Next would be help for the ratings-challenged NBC's "30 Rock." When the show comes back, the oomph should come from none other than Hugh Laurie, who stars as Dr. Gregory House on Fox's "House."
With apologies to Will Arnett's character vying for the top spot at General Electric, Laurie's snappy barbs could be a bigger rivalry to Alex Baldwin's Jack Donaghy character. And, hey -- both shows are produced by NBC Universal.
Networks should be thinking of big, dramatic changes. Audiences will be so flummoxed over these changes, they'll just have to watch an episode or two. In the meantime, ratings should be nice and high. Advertisers will cheer.
And then it'll be time for summer reruns.
What about next year? Time to get a new fantasy team.