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Stephen A. Smith makes his stance clear on possible Shannon Sharpe partnership

Stephen A Smith reports from the sideline

Dec 18, 2019; Philadelphia, PA, USA; ESPN analyst Stephen A. Smith broadcasts before a game between the Philadelphia 76ers and the Miami Heat at Wells Fargo Center. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Stephen A. Smith is not hiding his desire to bring Shannon Sharpe to ESPN with him.

Smith opened “The Stephen A. Smith Show” on Friday by confirming that he would love to work with Sharpe. He added that ESPN executives are in discussions with Sharpe. However, he would neither confirm nor deny that a partnership was certain.

“I’m not going to tell you that’s true. I’m not going to tell you it’s not, either,” Smith said. “What I can tell you is that the honchos are talking to Shannon Sharpe. What I can tell you is that the honchos are fully aware that Stephen A. Smith wants Shannon Sharpe on ‘First Take.'”

Smith clarified that he does not want Sharpe replacing any of his current rotating debate partners, including the likes of Ryan Clark and Christopher Russo, but that he was eager to work with Sharpe.

Smith is essentially confirming reports that ESPN has had discussions with Sharpe about a contributor role. The Pro Football Hall of Famer abruptly left FS1’s “Undisputed” in June and has been teasing his next move since. Many now expect that to be at least a part-time role on “First Take.”

From the moment Sharpe left FS1, Smith has been open about wanting to bring him to ESPN. If that is what Smith and Sharpe both want, it’s a safe bet that it will happen.


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