According to reports, ESPN will be shedding roughly 20 of its most prominent on-air reporters in the coming weeks.
The New York Post has obtained a document claiming that ESPN announced layoffs for its NFL, NBA, and ESPN Radio networks on Friday. According to the anonymous source, the warning did not provide further details, but they did assure the site that “no sacred cows” would be spared.
The Disney-owned network ESPN is cutting staff following the company-wide Disney layoff plan outlined in February by CEO Bob Iger.
The firings were part of a “strategic realignment of the company.”
It was part of a larger plan to cut costs as part of a more considerable effort to create a more effective, coordinated, and streamlined approach to business.
ESPN+ general manager Russell Wolff was let go after 26 years with the firm, while ESPN public relations executive Mike Soltys was let go after 43 years with the organization. Both of them have been with the firm for many years.
The New York Post reports that some contractual employees allegedly informed on Friday would continue to be paid but no longer participate in broadcasts.
The host of Monday Night Countdown, Suzy Kolber, and the anchors of SportsCenter and Outside the Lines were among the high-profile employees let go, as reported by Front Office Sports.
Also axed- Max Kellerman, host of This Just In; Keyshawn Johnson, an NFL commentator for 16 years; Ashley Brewer; Steve Young, a two-time Most Valuable Player; LaPhonso Ellis, an expert on college basketball; Matt Hasselbeck, a former NFL quarterback; and Todd McShay, an expert on the NFL draft.
Among the first rumors leaked on Friday was the firing of ESPN’s top NBA analyst Jeff Van Gundy, according to a follow-up piece published by the New York Post.
Many athletes and fans have turned to Twitter to express their displeasure with the piece and label it a “bad move” on the part of the network.
On Friday, the New York Post reported that former NBA player and current NBA analyst Jalen Rose is among the most high-profile dismissals.