ESPN Firing Over 100 Employees; Some Familiar Figures

ESPN surprised nearly everyone today by firing over 100 of their on-air anchors and analysts and writers. Prominent names mentioned thus far include NFL reporter Ed Werder, host Jay Crawford, former NFL players and analysts Danny Kanell and Trent Dilfer, and baseball writer Jayson Stark. ESPN has not issued a full list and/or much more than the initial statement they sent out. Some contracts will end immediately and some will be coming to an end soon. They plan to focus more on digital content and those who can enable them to produce more digital content.

John Skipper's message to employees: "A necessary component of managing change involves constantly evaluating how we best utilize all of our resources, and that sometimes involves difficult decisions. Our content strategy – primarily illustrated in recent months by melding distinct, personality-driven SportsCenter TV editions and digital-only efforts with our biggest sub-brand – still needs to go further, faster…and as always, must be efficient and nimble.  Dynamic change demands an increased focus on versatility and value, and as a result, we have been engaged in the challenging process of determining the talent—anchors, analysts, reporters, writers and those who handle play-by-play—necessary to meet those demands.  We will implement changes in our talent lineup this week.  A limited number of other positions will also be affected and a handful of new jobs will be posted to fill various needs."

Read the full statement here.

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