© Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports

Thoughts On The ESPN Cuts

Spoiler: It Sucks

Henry Lake
April 26, 2017 - 2:40 pm

In the realm of sports media, covering and talking sports here at 610 Sports Radio is so fun.  With that acknowledgement, I would everyone to know that I'm just like most of our average listeners for the most part.  I'm a huge sports fan!!  I love to not just watch the ballgames and sports events that we love, but I love the storylines that go with them.  

And beyond that, all the sports entertainment programming that has continously been created throughout the years, has made me even more of a passionate sports fan.  But to get to the bottom of sports stories, beyond the headlines, into the meat and potatoes of everything from the locker rooms, sidelines, training rooms, etc., it takes extremely talented and likable personalities to deliver these stories, and games drawing us in.  A talented roster of reporters and broadcasters bring events to life.

As someone in sports media, there is no bigger brand than ESPN.  Regardless of what you think overall about the company, you have to respect what they've accomplished throughout the years and the talent that they've uncovered and brought to us in so many mediums.  Not just with their actual television networks but also with their digital platforms, websites, magazine years ago, just to name a few things.

I am truly a fan of their product.  That's why as the news breaks today that they are laying off many talented employees, it makes me sad. The people that have found their way to Bristol, Connecticut, truly made it to the top of the mountain in the sports media world.  You just don't wake up one day and find yourself there, you've earned the right to be on the biggest of stages.  You've grinded it out in various different towns.  Covered events you weren't probably necessarily in love with to begin with, but stuck it out to reap the benefits of being able to cover events you love, even beyond the paycheck.

Some are saying that ESPN's massive layoff are because folks are turned off because of their "liberal based reporting and agenda".  That's absurd and ridiculous to say in the least.  This isn't happening becuase of stances being liberal or conservative.  Political in nature on certain topics.  In my opinion, if you believe that, then you possibly have an agenda. It has to do with the reality that more and more consumers are cutting the cord when it comes to traditional cable.  With all the cord cutting, the traditional model just isn't how we consume or receive our information anymore.  As ESPN has lost customers, unfortunately they have to let go of some really good folks in the field. 

I believe that ESPN will continue to be the preeminent sports media company in the world.  They will develop and uncover more talent in the future.  But I do want to mention just a few folks that I've been a fan of with their brand that have been let go today thus far.

Ed Werder - NFL Reporter - Phenomenal reporter with great sources, who truly was able to give great scoops and updates around the National Football League.

Jay Crawford - SportsCenter Anchor/Host- Very professional anchor who did a very good job of delivering the networks early morning news and always seemed to mesh well with the other folks that he shared the set with.

Len Elmore - College baskeball analyst- I think one of the most underrated analyst in all of college basketball.  His knowledge of the game and persepctive on what it took for teams to be really good and his talent evaluation was really good.

Jane McManus - Columnist- Outstanding at digging deep and talking about stories that make a lot of fans uncomfortable in the world of sports.  She was amazing at talking about the stories that impacted the players that play the sports.  And also great at exploring real issues involving gender and race within the sports world.

Jayson Stark - MLB writer- One of the well known writers who did as good of job covering the league as anyone.


I know that each one of these individuals will land on their feet but their efforts will be missed at the four letter network.  But I will forever be their fans.

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