Stephen A. Smith Shares Concerns About ESPN Layoffs: "There's More to Come. I Could Be Next"
Stephen A. Smith speaks out about ESPN layoffs, expects more cuts.
In a heartfelt discussion on The Stephen A. Smith Show, sports analyst Stephen A. Smith shared his thoughts on the recent ESPN layoffs that affected around 20 on-air personalities. Smith expressed his disappointment and concern for his friends and respected colleagues who had done an exceptional job but found themselves facing redundancy.
Smith emphasized that it wasn't Disney or ESPN that these individuals deserved better from; rather, it was the challenging times we currently live in. He acknowledged the talent and dedication of his co-host Jalen Rose, praising his outstanding coverage of the NBA over the years.
Expressing his admiration for Rose, Smith mentioned the great work he had done for the company and expressed his sadness at no longer working with him on NBA Countdown. Smith commended Rose's basketball expertise and highlighted his strong work ethic, noting that Rose never shied away from any assignment and always approached his work with enthusiasm.
Smith also gave a nod to former NBA coach and ESPN analyst Jeff Van Gundy, acknowledging his brilliance as a basketball analyst for ESPN throughout the years. While Smith admitted he would miss Van Gundy, he expressed confidence that Van Gundy would not be out of work for long, given his exceptional skills and contributions to the field.
However, Smith did not shy away from the reality of the situation, stating that these layoffs were not the end. He candidly admitted that more layoffs would be coming in the future and acknowledged the possibility that he himself could be next.
Among the other personalities affected by the ESPN layoffs were Max Kellerman, Keyshawn Johnson, Matt Hasselbeck, Chris Chelios, Steve Young, Rob Ninkovich, Neil Everett, Ashley Brewer, Joon Lee, LaPhonso Ellis, Todd McShay, and Jason Fitz.
Smith's emotional response to the ESPN layoffs highlights the impact of these decisions on both the individuals involved and the sports network as a whole. The video below captures Smith's heartfelt address on the matter.