Michelle Beadle has had her on-air role reduced at ESPN significantly over the past year, and her time with the company appears to be coming to an end.
Beadle and ESPN have been negotiating a potential buyout that would see her leave the company, according to Andrew Marchand of the New York Post. The 43-year-old still has multiple years remaining on her contract with ESPN and currently makes $5 million annually.
Marchand notes that Beadle’s buyout is expected to be based on a sliding scale, meaning taking more money will give her less of a chance of working for another network immediately, and vice-versa. There will also be a non-disparagement agreement that prevents her from speaking negatively about ESPN or her time with the network.
There has already been speculation that Beadle could wind up doing podcast work or working for a paid subscription service like DAZN, which happens to be run by former ESPN president John Skipper.
SportsbyBrooks.com reported back in July 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.
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.
There have been rumblings that Michelle Beadle could be out as the host of ESPN’s “NBA Countdown” next season, and it turns out she may be removed from any on-air role with the network altogether.
SportsbyBrooks.com reports that Beadle may not appear on any ESPN show going forward, and she could be moved to ABC. If Beadle is removed, the decision will reportedly have something to do with the way she spoke out against the sport of football last August during an episode of “Get Up.”
Beadle was angry that former Ohio State coach Urban Meyer was not fired after he knew a member of his staff had been accused of domestic violence.
“I believe that the sport of football has set itself up to be in a position where it shows itself in the bigger picture to not really care about women,” Beadle said at the time. “They don’t really care about people of color, but we won’t get into that for NFL either – but as a woman I feel like a person who has been marginalized. And every single one of these stories that comes out, every single time, pushes me further and further away.”
Beadle left “Get Up” shortly after making the comments and became the host of “NBA Countdown.” There have been reports that “NBA Countdown” will be totally revamped next season, so Beadle seems unlikely to return. ESPN has also apparently been unhappy with her for not fulfilling responsibilities off the air.
If Michelle Beadle does not return as the host of ESPN’s “NBA Countdown” next season, it may be because she has irritated the higher-ups by what she has done off-camera rather than on the air.
Andrew Marchand of the New York Post reports that executives at ESPN have been disappointed with Beadle’s unwillingness to promote “NBA Countdown” and her sudden departure from the network’s morning show, “Get Up.” As Marchand notes, “NBA Countdown” and the the popular “Inside the NBA” show on TNT get similar viewership numbers, but the Charles Barkley-led show creates far more buzz and seems more popular. That may be where the disappointment comes in with Beadle’s lack of effort in promoting “Countdown.”
Beadle is reportedly making $5 million per year with her current ESPN contract, so moving her to a lesser role next season may not make sense. Sports by Brooks reported last week that Beadle, Chauncey Billups and Paul Pierce are expected to get the boot from “NBA Countdown,” but Marchand speculates that Beadle could get another shot with a different supporting cast.
ESPN responded to the Beadle talk with a statement that didn’t exactly reassure her that her job is safe. The issues are probably still being sorted out, with the main one being that ESPN needs to make sure the right analysts and or/host are in place if they make major changes.
ESPN responded on Wednesday to a report that said Michelle Beadle would be out as the host of “NBA Countdown.”
On Wednesday morning, Sports by Brooks reported that Beadle would not be the show host next season. He also reported that Chauncey Billups and Paul Pierce would not return as full-time analysts.
In a statement to the New York Post’s Andrew Marchand, ESPN said they have made no decisions about next season.
— Andrew Marchand (@AndrewMarchand) June 12, 2019
Marchand reported in April that ESPN was considering Maria Taylor and Rachel Nichols to replace Beadle on the show. He also says Billups may move to work more on games.
Jalen Rose will continue in his current capacity, according to Brooks.
Beadle began hosting “Countdown” in 2016 and focused on NBA coverage after leaving “Get Up” last year.
The seeming lax punishment by Ohio State towards head coach Urban Meyer led to plenty of criticism from the media, and it’s another reason why a prominent sports TV host says she is done with the sport.
Michelle Beadle said on her ESPN show “Get Up” Thursday that the weak punishment for Meyer sent a clear message to her that the school does not care about women. That’s part of a trend she’s seen in both college football and the NFL, which has led her to stop watching both sports.
“There is a reason why this will be the second season where I don’t watch NFL and I don’t spend my Saturdays watching college football either,” Beadle said. “I believe that the sport of football has set itself up to show itself in the bigger picture to not care about women.
“As a woman, I feel like a person who has been marginalized in every single one of these stories that comes out. Every single time pushes me further and further away. I realize that they don’t care, but for me, it’s opened up my weekends.”
She then focused specifically on the Ohio State situation and punishment of Meyer, who was suspended three games without pay.
“I don’t care anymore. I’ve lost the ability to be surprised. You got three games. You could have been fired. They could have gotten away with not having to pay you a single dime. You survived. The entire thing is a disgrace. I’m just numb to it. I’m just ready for NBA to kick off, quite frankly.”
Beadle isn’t alone in her feelings, but not many people will carry out a boycott the way she says she is. All sports need to keep a close eye on these situations, because the last thing they want is people being apathetic towards their sports. Fans are the ones who support the industry and pay for salaries.
There is still plenty of mystery surrounding Kawhi Leonard’s injury and how things went so wrong for the star forward in San Antonio, and we know one person who is beyond fed up with hearing about it.
On Friday’s edition of ESPN’s “Get Up!,” Michelle Beadle absolutely unloaded on Leonard for the way he has handled himself over the past several months.
— Get Up (@GetUpESPN) July 6, 2018
“What part of Kawhi Leonard’s behavior in the last year and every story that’s come out in the last several weeks says anything about this dude having any of the qualities that a leader is supposed to have?” Beadle said. “You don’t talk and you don’t defend yourself. … You’re coming off as an obnoxious diva. You don’t want to play with LeBron because you want to be the top dog? You are the top dog for a team and an organization that has done really well for many, many years.
“I’m so over this dude. The city of San Antonio is over this dude. You can go as soon as they get whatever they want for you. But if you think you’re just gonna walk out of there and get your way because you’ve thrown this little spoiled hissy fit and become one of the most unlikable characters … I’ve never seen a heel turn like this in a way that is not enjoyable.”
While few have expressed is so enthusiastically, Beadle is not the only one who feels this way. Some of the reports that have come out this offseason have made Leonard sound extremely unreasonable, though there are two sides to every story.