Tuesday, September 3, 2019

ESPN, Michelle Beadle In Buyout Talks

Michelle Beadle and ESPN are in talks that are expected to result in her leaving the company, The NYPost is reporting.

This is part of the continued fallout from ABC/ESPN’s NBA shake-up that right now has Rachel Nichols and her show, “The Jump,” in line for a major promotion in how the network’s coverage will be presented going forward.

Michelle Beadle
Beadle and ESPN are negotiating a buyout, which would end her time at the company, according to sources. She makes $5 million per year. She has multiple years left on her contract, but the exact number is unknown.

Just two years ago, she was one of the faces out front for ESPN. She was a co-host on the much-ballyhooed debut of the morning show, “Get Up!,” and she led ABC/ESPN’s premier NBA Finals show, “Countdown.”

Last year, she was quickly removed from “Get Up!,” and then just recently, she was dropped from “Countdown.”

Now, Nichols and her daily show, “The Jump,” are emerging with the power, though nothing has officially been decided.

The most prestigious night of the week is Saturdays on ABC for the network’s biggest games. This had been led by Beadle on “Countdown.”

Right now, “The Jump” is expected to be on site for those Saturday matchups. This would seemingly give Nichols and “The Jump” the inside track on being the lead-in to the Finals, which is the Holy Grail for NBA hosts. Sources said the format for the Finals presentation has not been completed yet.

Meanwhile, as The Big Lead has mentioned, Stephen A. Smith could lead an expanded “SportsCenter” on Wednesdays as ESPN is eliminating “Countdown” for those nights.

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