Elle Duncan and Michael Eaves are on the brief listing of names ESPN is contemplating to host NBA Countdown this season after the departure of Maria Taylor, a number of sources inform OutKick.
ESPN airs NBA video games on Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays, so Eaves and Duncan may even cut up days as hosts. Stephen A. Smith has additionally hosted one night time of NBA pregame protection per week since 2019.
Aside from the lack of Taylor, NBA Countdown will bear one other change this season. ESPN has named Dave Roberts the pinnacle of NBA manufacturing, and sources inform OutKick that Roberts is pushing for Duncan to host this system. Roberts oversees the 6 pm SportsCenter that Duncan hosts. (For extra info on Dave Roberts, learn this.)
Duncan and Eaves aren’t shocking candidates, however they each include baggage that ESPN doesn’t want. Should ESPN choose Duncan or Eaves, the community would simply be changing one poisonous host, Maria Taylor, with one other. Eaves and Duncan labored collectively to freeze Sage Steele out of a social justice particular one yr in the past, claiming Steele “wouldn’t be accepted by what they considered the black community.” Agree with their politics or keep away, they are saying. They are dangerous teammates.
If ESPN goes in a unique course on Countdown, which sources say remains to be attainable, the community has in-house candidates who aren’t divisive behind the scenes. Cassidy Hubbarth, for instance, is well liked by her colleagues and has the basketball-first focus ESPN wants. Hubbarth additionally covers the NBA, in contrast to Duncan and Eaves.
If ESPN isn’t frightened a few host’s NBA ties, the community ought to contemplate Scott Van Pelt. Van Pelt and Mike Greenberg are ESPN’s finest studio hosts. Greenberg was an improve on the NFL Draft in April, and Van Pelt can be an improve on Countdown. And whereas Van Pelt possible can’t host every day since he additionally hosts the midnight version of SportsCenter, he may host someday per week after which helm the NBA Finals on ABC.
As for Malika Andrews, she in all probability gained’t be in consideration for the Countdown gig. ESPN views Malika Andrews because the frontrunner to host an upcoming day by day NBA present that can substitute The Jump, previously hosted by Rachel Nichols. Nichols is on her approach out of ESPN following this summer time’s debacle with Maria Taylor.
Maria Taylor made a large number of ESPN’s NBA programming, however it seems ESPN hasn’t discovered something from the occasions of this summer time both. I’d contemplate Hubbarth and Van Pelt over Duncan and Eaves. However, ESPN is within the latter two.