BROOKLYN, NY – JUNE 22: Stephen A. Smith looks on during the 2023 NBA Draft on June 22, 2023 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2023 NBAE (Photo by Kostas Lymperopoulos/NBAE via Getty Images)
In recent weeks, ESPN has caused quite a stir as massive layoffs have seen several well-known sports journalists bid farewell to the beloved network. Stephen A. Smith, one of the network’s biggest stars, spoke on the uncertain future of those who remain, including his own.
One of the more surprising layoffs was NBA Countdown host Jalen Rose. A fan favorite and former NBA player, Rose had become a crucial part of the team responsible for hosting the Finals. Alongside Malika Andrews and Kendrick Perkins, the former Indiana Pacers forward set the tone for the show with his unique style and knowledge of the game. “Got a lot of love for that brother,” Smith said about Rose. “A lot of the great work he’s done over the years, what he’s represented for the company… I’m going to miss him. Jalen Rose has always been good to me and I loved working with him on NBA Countdown. He is a brilliant basketball mind, he is somebody that worked his ass off all the time. There was never an assignment he backed away from, there was never a time he didn’t want to work.”
As for his future, Smith doesn’t feel exempt from the rapid changes happening in and around the industry. “If we’re going to be real about it, let’s deal with reality,” he said. “This ain’t the end, more is coming. And yes, ladies and gentlemen, I could be next.”
Source: Black Enterprise