Sports | June 19, 2019 9:25 am

Why ESPN Personality Michelle Beadle’s Future at Network Is “In Peril”

The "NBA Countdown" host's tenure with the Worldwide Leader may soon be up

TV personality Michelle Beadle attends ESPN the Party in 2015. (Robin Marchant/Getty for ESPN)
TV personality Michelle Beadle attends ESPN the Party in 2015. (Robin Marchant/Getty for ESPN)
Getty Images for ESPN

Time could be up for the current host of NBA Countdown on ESPN.

According to Andrew Marchand of The New York Post, host Michelle Beadle’s future at the Worldwide Leader is “in peril” because she shirks her duties at the network outside of hosting the network’s top NBA show.

Beadle, who makes $5 million annually, is not considered to be a team player by the network.

“Her failure to promote the program on outside venues combined with her virtual no-show to the much-hyped morning show Get Up! has branded her a bad teammate and put her position in question,” according to Marchand.

ESPN’s Countdown competes with the Ernie Johnson-led Inside The NBA and is not nearly as popular as the TNT program. In fairness, if she were passing to Charles Barkley, she would probably be doing just fine. For what it is worth, she tweeted this weekend as if she will definitely be back on “Countdown.”

Following a report last week that Beadle, as well as Paul Pierce and Chauncey Billups, would be leaving the show, ESPN denied any decisions had been made about NBA Countdown’s future.

“Our whole NBA team is doing a great job and remains focused on an incredible NBA Finals and tomorrow night’s Game 6,” ESPN said in a statement. “We have made no decisions about what we are doing next season. After the season, and as we do with every sport, we will sit down and plan our entire NBA content offering across platforms.”

Current ESPN personalities Rachel Nichols and Maria Taylor have been floated as a possible replacement for Beadle. The Post also reports Pierce and Billups will remain with ESPN but that their roles will shift and they will no longer be full-time analysts on Countdown. That’s a shame, as it means we’ll no longer hear stories like the time Paul Pierce faked an injury in a Finals game because he had to use the bathroom.

“In its offseason meetings, ESPN will try to figure out how to change the show with Beadle now the biggest topic,” Marchand writes. “With her reputation as a teammate down and the show considered sluggish, her greatest asset may be her huge salary. With a better cast and format, ESPN may decide that Beadle could be a facilitator.”

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