Rachel Nichols removed from ESPN’s NBA programming, ‘The Jump’ canceled

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ESPN viewers might have seen the last of Rachel Nichols on their televisions.

The Sports Business Journal reported on Wednesday that ESPN has removed Nichols from its NBA programming and canceled her weekday afternoon show, “The Jump.” The report added that, despite having a year left on her contract with the network, Nichols is unlikely to be on air again.

Nichols confirmed on Twitter that “The Jump” was coming to a close, saying there was “more to come.”

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Sports Business Journal reported that Nichols was told of the changes this week.

“We mutually agreed that this approach regarding our NBA coverage was best for all concerned,” ESPN senior vice president of production David Roberts told the Sports Business Journal. “Rachel is an excellent reporter, host and journalist, and we thank her for her many contributions to our NBA content.”

ESPN’s shift in content comes after Nichols came under fire in July. The New York Times reported that she told LeBron James’ advisor Adam Mendelsohn that Maria Taylor, who is Black, hosted ESPN’s coverage of the 2020 NBA Finals because the company was “feeling pressure to be more diverse.” Nichols was not reprimanded within the company, which caused internal strife.

Nichols apologized to Taylor and others when the report went public, and ESPN removed her from sideline reporting for the 2021 NBA Finals. Following the end of her contract in July, Taylor left for NBC Sports.

This is the latest shake-up at ESPN. On Tuesday, the network announced “First Take” co-host Max Kellerman was being moved off the debate show and onto his own boxing show on ESPN+. It did not announce how “First Take” would change as a result of Kellerman’s move.



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