Report: NBC Balks at Al Michaels Trade Offer From ESPN

ESPN wanted Michaels to lead a revamped "Monday Night Football" broadcast

Report: NBC Rejects Al Michaels Trade Offer From ESPN
Al Michaels, NBC Sports "Sunday Night Football" announcer, on the sidelines. (George Gojkovich/Getty)
Getty Images

A trade that would have sent Al Michaels from NBC over to ESPN to head up the latter’s Monday Night Football broadcast has been rejected by the former, The New York Post reports.

“We look forward to Al completing his contract and calling Sunday Night Football games on NBC,” Greg Hughes, an NBC Sports spokesman, told The Post.

Michaels has two years left on his SNF contract, and Mike Tirico is waiting in the wings to take over for him. The trade rejection kills ESPN’s reported dream of pairing Michaels alongside Peyton Manning in a revamped MNF booth that would theoretically boost the broadcast’s disappointing ratings.

With Michaels now seemingly out of the picture, ESPN will focus its efforts on signing Manning after missing out on the Tony Romo sweepstakes. As of now, Joe Tessitore and Booger McFarland are set to head up a two-man booth for MNF.

Interestingly, the last time Michaels was traded, it was from ABC to NBC. During the deal in 2006, Disney CEO Bob Iger agreed to release Michaels from his contract with ABC if NBC would give back the rights to Oswald the Lucky Rabbit.

A precursor to Mickey Mouse, Oswald the Lucky Rabbit was designed personally by Walt Disney for Universal Pictures back in the 1920s.

If Michaels, 75, does end up getting moved this time around, at least it probably won’t be for a cartoon.

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