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Stephen A. Smith Leaving Daily Morning Show at FOX Sports Radio

About a year ago, Steve Czaban’s long-running morning show was canceled by FOX Sports Radio and replaced by Stephen A. Smith. The idea was to provide a different sound from the competition in the East Coast morning drive slot. Stephen A. did just that and did it well, but his style was not for some folks. Because of that reason, FOX wisely offered affiliates a second morning show option — the Zakk and Jack show with Dominic Zaccagnini and former Colts QB Jack Trudeau.

Tuesday it was announced that Stephen A. would be leaving his morning show and Zakk and Jack will become the network’s morning show. Stephen A. will play the new role of NBA analyst for the network, which likely means guest spots talking basketball.

Stephen A. implied on his twitter account that the decision was his, saying “3:30am wakeup calls, then traveling 80 miles 1-way to work everyday was very taxing.” He also added “you will be hearing from me very, very soon. In a big way, too.” Stay tuned for the latest development in the career of Stephen A., who likely is coming to a TV channel near you. And this should help explain why a future announcement won’t involve work for a newspaper.

Stephen A. Smith: I’m Too Popular to Work for a Newspaper

If anything disappoints me about LeBron James and Chris Bosh signing with the Miami Heat, it’s the fact that Stephen A. Smith called it.  He made his prediction with such certainty knowing that if he was wrong, he’s just another sports “insider” with bad information but if it turned out to be accurate, he gets to say, “I’m the man because I called it first.”  Maybe he did have a good source and knew what he was talking about, so I guess I’ll give credit where credit’s due.

The problem I have with Stephen A. Smith is he refuses to be modest.  People in American society don’t respond favorably to those who “toot their own horn,” for the most part.  If you part ways with a company and decide to move on to a different chapter in your life, it’s probably not a good idea to imply that you’re leaving because you’re too good for the old job.  Here’s Stephen A. Smith calling himself a celebrity in an interview with the Times Union, courtesy of The Big Lead:

I’ve always prided myself on being a newspaper guy because of that, but I do understand that it’s become incredibly hard for me to maintain my newspaper career. Believe it or not, it’s not because of these other ventures, it’s because of the popularity that it has brought to me that I never anticipated.

“I wanted to make money, I wanted to be respected for what I did, and I wanted to go home and enjoy my time with my family. Instead, what has happened, I have become what other people call a celebrity. I try to never call myself that because I consider the Denzel Washingtons and Will Smiths of the world celebrities. They can afford their privacy — the chartered jets, not having to go through airport security. You can afford all of that stuff.

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LeBron Watch: Stephen A. Smith Makes a Prediction, Jay-Z Says Very Little

If nothing else, Jay-Z has made it tough to get a read on what his approach will be in trying to land LeBron James.  Publicly, he’s come out and stated that he would not try to convince LeBron to sign with the Nets, although we all know that’s completely false.  With July 1 only days away, the LeBron James free agency rumors are in full swing.  It’s already been said that Chris Bosh and LeBron to the Chicago Bulls is a done deal.  Stephen A. Smith disagrees with that prediction and has made it clear that he believes LeBron and Bosh are both headed to Miami to team with Dwyane Wade.  If that’s true you can go ahead and cancel the season, but we’ll get into that after.  First, have a look at the video of Jay-Z talking about LeBron James with David Letterman, courtesy of Waiting For Next Year via Sports by Brooks Live:

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Stephen A. Smith Pulls Race Card When Discussing Bryce Harper

What do the two above athletes have in common?  They both passed up some form of higher-level education to pursue a career as professional athletes.  What does the athlete on the left lack in common with the one on the right?  Race.  According to Stephen A. Smith, that’s a very significant factor in examining the way the public portrays 17-year-old phenom Bryce Harper.

By now we all know what Harper is capable of physically. We also know a bit about the type of person he is — or at least that he has a pretty brutal temper from what we can see.  What some of us may not have thought about yet is any racial implications that go along with the way we look at the future Nationals superstar.  Cue Stephen A. Smith, who isn’t exactly the most respected analyst in the industry and I’m still not sure I can agree with his latest rant.  In his article for the Philadelphia Inquirer, Smith refers to all the buzz and positive coverage surrounding Harper as a “clear case of hypocrisy.”  Like many professional athletes have done in the past, Harper has foregone higher education by dropping out of high school to to get his GED, which has allowed the road to Major League Baseball to shorten.

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Stephen A. NBA Draft Hecklers Strike!

One of the highlights of the 2007 NBA draft — aside from the superstar that is Yi coming into the league — was the Stephen A. Smith draft heckling video that sprouted. I think these dudes call themselves the Stephen A. Smith Heckling Society or something, whatever. I just know their bit is hilarious. Last year they dubbed Joakim Noah, “The People’s Princess.” Does it get better than that? Well, Stephen A. was not on the big set along with all the analysts this year, but he was interviewing all the players for ESPN. And luckily the hecklers were there as well. Check out this year’s video, and make sure you catch Kevin Love’s line.

Not as classic as last year’s, but worked for me. I think Stephen A’s stream of consciousness while writing down notes was the best part. Video via Awful Announcing, of course.

Talk to me, Yi! Everything I Say is Important!!

After watching this video with some peeps last weekend, it hit me that there are some people who still have not seen it. It may be long, but it’s well worth your six minutes of time. I’m telling you. This is a dude heckling Stephen A. Smith and various NBA prospects at the ’07 NBA draft. Enjoy the brilliance:

Spencer Hawes, I hereby declare you a bust!