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Stephen A. Smith Calls Nets Hiring Steve Nash ‘White Privilege’

“He is frustrated by people like Ty Lue and Mark Jackson, who have succeeded as head coaches being passed over for a more famous white man with no experience.”

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Stephen A. Smith may have had a controversial take on Steve Nash being named the new head coach of the Brooklyn Nets, but he said that it wasn’t one that he took pleasure in delivering. In fact, he called sharing his opinion “one of the toughest, toughest decisions I’ve ever had to take in my career on First Take.”

The First Take host had nothing but good things to say about Steve Nash as a person. Smith noted all of the work Nash did during his career to lift up younger and lower-profile players and acknowledged his Hall of Fame credentials.

“Steve Nash is a sensational dude, and if anybody deserves this opportunity absent the experience he has as a coach, it is him.”

Most of Stephen A. Smith’s scorn and frustration was directed at the Nets and the NBA. He said that “in these times when we are making all this noise about social justice” not much has changed in the thinking of the people at the top.

“Ladies and gentlemen, there’s no way around this. This is white privilege. This does not happen for a Black man. No experience whatsoever? On any level as a coach and you get the Brooklyn Nets job?”

Smith acknowledges that according to his sources, both Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant signed off on the hire. Smith isn’t worried about Nash getting pushback from his players. He is frustrated by people like Ty Lue and Mark Jackson, who have succeeded as head coaches being passed over for a more famous white man with no experience. Smith tied his frustration into those marching in protest of racial inequality.

“The frustration, the protests and all of these things you see across America emanating from the Black community and disenfranchised communities is that proverbial glass ceiling, and the fact that it breeds a level of frustration that we can’t even put into words sometimes. You just want to scream, scream to the high heavens, ‘how the hell does this always happen for somebody else other than us?’ Why is it that we have to be twice as good to get half as much?”

Not surprisingly, Stephen A. Smith has received some pushback on social media. That’s bound to happen when you are an already polarizing figure and use a phrase like “white privilege,” which tends to set Twitter off. One interesting rebuke came from his friend and ESPN colleague Jay Williams.

As Smith pointed out at the beginning of his rant, there is no shortage of love for Nash in the league. The two-time MVP has received largely praise and well wishes from his coaching peers.

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The NFL Still Considering Multiple Offers For Sunday Ticket

The NFL has had the respective bids of Disney, Apple and Amazon for weeks now. DirecTV has not bid for the package but has stated it is willing to partner with the new rightsholder for a potential deal.

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Sunday Ticket Negotiations

DirecTV currently has the rights to Sunday Ticket. That deal expires at the end of this upcoming football season. The NFL is expected to make a boatload of cash when they decide which media organization gets the next rights to the package. The only question is… who will that be?

Alex Sherman of CNBC reports that the NFL has had the respective bids of Disney, Apple and Amazon for weeks now. DirecTV has decided not bid for the package. However, they are interested in partnering with the new rightsholder for a potential deal. DirecTV knows that Sunday Ticket is a staple in bars and restaurants and is interested in maintaining those relationships.

Outside of the bar/restaurant industry, success has been limited for the satellite provider with the football package. Fewer than two million subscribers signed up for Sunday Ticket each year which made the package a money-loser for the satellite TV provider.

According to the report, the NFL wants more than $2 billion for the rights and a stake in NFL Media, which is being packaged with Sunday Ticket. Also on the table is the NFL’s mobile rights. The league’s previous mobile agreement with Verizon has ended.

An interesting piece of the negotiations is Sunday Ticket price. According to the report, a buyer would have limited flexibility on pricing. The NFL signed contracts with CBS and Fox and within the framework of those deals, language mandates Sunday Ticket have a premium price. That’s to prevent loss of viewers from the networks that feature local market Sunday afternoon games. So essentially, the price is the price for the consumer.

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F1 Renews With ESPN For U.S. Media Rights

ESPN was reportedly in a three-way bidding battle with Amazon and Comcast. According to the report, F1 told both Amazon and Comcast on Friday that they had decline to accept either one’s offer.

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F1 ESPN

The racing series F1 has decided to stick with ESPN through 2025.

ESPN was reportedly in a three-way bidding battle with Amazon and Comcast. According to the report, F1 told both Amazon and Comcast on Friday that they had decline to accept either one’s offer.

The reported value of the three-year contract is set to pay F1 $75-90M per year for the U.S. media rights. Amazon had offered to pay roughly $100M per year, with the right to sublicense to a linear broadcast network. Comcast’s offer was similar to ESPN’s in terms of value and the structure. They also wanted to put select races on it’s streaming service, Peacock.

Netflix was in on the negotiations, as well. The makers of Drive to Survive, the streaming series that many credit with the sport’s explosion in popularity in recent years, wasn’t close on on their financial offer. Also, it seems F1 executives were not ready to put all of its races on a streaming service just yet.

Currently, F1 receives $5M per year for ESPN to broadcast it’s races. ESPN has grabbed about 1.0 million viewers per race. That makes F1 a more than viable option for the network to invest into again. ESPN will be able to put a small number of races on its ESPN+ streaming service exclusively. The vast majority being on ABC or ESPN.

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Skip Bayless Says He And Stephen A. Smith ‘Sorted Out’ Their Disagreement

“Brothers fight. We have fought before. I’m assuming we will fight again.”

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Skip Bayless

Stephen A. Smith and Skip Bayless were locked in a war of words last week following the First Take host’s appearance on JJ Redick’s Old Man and the Three podcast.

The origins of their partnership were discussed and Bayless admitted he did not like the way Smith characterized the state of First Take before he arrived on set. Smith insisted that Bayless simply misunderstood what he meant by saying that he was told the show needed him.

Over the weekend, Skip Bayless says he and Stephen A. Smith got together at the Bayless home in California to talk things out in private.

“He was in LA, he came over, we sat by the pool,” he said on the latest episode of The Skip Bayless Show. “It wasn’t the easiest conversation for a while, but we slowly but surely sorted it out. We got through it, and we have been through so much together.”

Bayless reiterated that he considers Smith a brother. They love each other. That doesn’t mean they are always going to remember events the same way or see eye-to-eye all the time.

“Brothers fight. We have fought before. I’m assuming we will fight again.”

Fighting doesn’t mean the relationship is fractured. In fact, Skip Bayless was adamant that he remains closer to Smith than he is to most people in his life.

“I don’t trust easily because of the way I was raised, but I do trust Stephen Anthony Smith. Trust him with my life. Always have and always will. I trust he will always be there for me, and you better believe I will always be there for him.”

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