Rachel Nichols, Maria Taylor replacing Michelle Beadle as ‘NBA Countdown’ hosts
ESPN has officially begun the process of revamping its “NBA Countdown” crew, and Michelle Beadle is being replaced as the show’s host.
Rachel Nichols and Maria Taylor will be named the new hosts of “NBA Countdown” for the 2019-20 NBA season, according to Richard Deitsch of The Athletic. Nichols will also continue hosting the popular ESPN show “The Jump.”
ESPN news: ESPN is planning to name Rachel Nichols & Maria Taylor as the hosts of NBA Countdown for this upcoming season. Formal announcement should come in coming weeks. The expectation, via sources, is both will host the show. They'll split the assignment in some manner.
— Richard Deitsch (@richarddeitsch) August 16, 2019
Deitsch adds that Jalen Rose is expected to return to “NBA Countdown,” while Chauncey Billups will move to a role as a studio analyst and Paul Pierce’s duties remain up in the air.
SportsbyBrooks.com reported last month that Beadle could be out as the host of “NBA Countdown” and moved to an on-air role with ABC. Beadle left ESPN’s “Get Up” roughly a year ago after she spoke out against the sport of football and expressed anger over former Ohio State coach Urban Meyer not being fired amid the Zach Smith scandal. She became the host of “NBA Countdown” after leaving “Get Up.”
There has also been talk that ESPN is upset with Beadle for not fulfilling her responsibilities off the air, so her future with the network remains murky.