While many shows have came and gone throughout the ESPN atmosphere, ESPN2‘s First Take has been a mainstay on the channel and a fan favorite among people everywhere. A big reason for that, was the always controversial opinion given by longtime reporter, Skip Bayless when he and counterpart, Stephen A. Smith would debate on topics such as Johnny Manziel, the NBA Playoffs, police brutality and more. The almost 9-year-run is apparently going to come to a halt with ESPN announcing that Bayless would be leaving the company after a lengthy 12-year-career.
It has been reported by Sports Illustrated‘s Richard Deitsch that Bayless would be leaving his long time employer for Fox Sports on a deal that in total could be worth than $25 million. It was reported that deal would be $5.5 million per year for four years accompanied by $4 million signing bonus. That’s ball player money.
Bayless’ loss leaves ESPN with some large shoes to fill going opposite of the over bearing Smith. Bayless’ controversial takes such as his thoughts on Denver Bronco’s QB Tim Tebow and his everlasting love for the Dallas Cowboys will be sorely missed on the show despite people tweeting about their dislike for the analyst. Fox Sports on the other hand, will be reaping the benefits of ESPN’s misfortune with the acquisition of one of the most well know sports journalist in the country right now. With all of that loot they’re throwing at the former Northwest Classen JV basketball star, one would assume that Bayless would be getting his own feature show and hopefully it’s one where he will be able to speak freely and make outlandish comments such as these gems right here. It is reported that the 64-year-old journalist’s last day with the company will be right after the conclusion of the NBA Finals.
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