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#pounditSaturday, June 22, 2024

Stan Van Gundy slams ESPN with profane comments over firing of his brother Jeff

Stan Van Gundy on the sideline

Jan 30, 2017; Boston, MA, USA; Detroit Pistons head coach Stan Van Gundy during the second half of the Boston Celtics 113-109 win over the Detroit Pistons at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports

Stan Van Gundy is speaking his mind about the way that ESPN treated his younger brother.

In an interview this week on Dan Le Batard’s “South Beach Sessions,” Stan addressed his brother Jeff Van Gundy, who was fired last summer by ESPN after nearly two decades working for them as a broadcaster. Stan expressed major displeasure over the way that the network handled the situation.

‘He was hurt by it,” said Stan of Jeff, per Awful Announcing. “I mean, he worked for them for 17 years. And it wasn’t even just the fact that they made the move, I mean they s–t on him. The timing was awful. They waited until basically the NBA market in terms of coaching jobs, assistant jobs, front office jobs was already gone by to make the move.

“Then they delayed and delayed and delayed on a buyout that would free him to work for [other] people,” Stan added about ESPN. “I mean after 17 years of being in arguably … the best game broadcast booth in the business in basketball, and being the kind of person he is, ESPN s–t on him.”

Jeff had worked at ESPN since 2007 and became a mainstay at the network as one-third of their beloved lead NBA television broadcast team (with Mike Breen and Mark Jackson). But both Jackson and Jeff Van Gundy were let go last summer as ESPN made widespread layoffs to their on-air talent. The firing of Jeff Van Gundy was especially surprising too since he was a well-liked commentator who added color and humor to broadcasts.

When it came to the timing of Jeff’s firing, it was announced in late June of last year, nearly three weeks after Jeff had worked his last NBA Finals game for ESPN. Based on Stan’s comments this week, it sounds like ESPN took even longer than that to free up Jeff to be able to work elsewhere (since he presumably still had some time left on his contract when he was let go). Jeff would eventually land a new front office job with an NBA team, but not until mid-October (three-and-a-half months after his firing was first announced).

For Stan, who is the older of the two brothers by a little over two years, he works as an NBA television analyst himself for TNT (in addition to NCAA Tournament coverage for CBS). Stan is famous for his no-filter brand of commentating, and the same clearly applies here to his thoughts on his brother’s situation.

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