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Ethan Sherwood Strauss Says ESPN Killed Unflattering Mark Jackson Story In 2016

“In his latest newsletter, Strauss writes that some of the information in that piece is what has caused Jackson to be passed over for coaching opportunities in the past.”

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A story written for ESPN: The Magazine in 2016 was killed because it made former Warriors coach and current ABC analyst Mark Jackson look bad. That is an accusation Ethan Sherwood Strauss, who covered the NBA for ESPN at the time, is making in his latest Substack newsletter.

Strauss notes he was not the writer of the piece. He declined to name who was.

The purpose of the story was to examine how the Golden State Warriors had turned into a championship team under Steve Kerr. Part of the background of the story involved laying out what the team had become under Mark Jackson, who was fired in 2014. Strauss describes that information as “incendiary” and the reason the story did not see the light of day.

In his latest newsletter, Strauss writes that some of the information in that piece is what has caused Jackson to be passed over for coaching opportunities in the past. Most recently, he lost out on the Sacramento Kings’ coaching job to Mike Brown.

“The reasons for Mark Jackson’s drought are hidden, in part, because he’s an announcer,” Strauss writes. “If he ever gets what he wants and leaves that position, we’ll see more on why the object of his pursuit was kept from him. Teams know. They’ve done the work to find out what Jackson’s current employer has tried to keep quiet.”

Among the allegations in the 2016 article were that he called asisstant coach Jason Collins and team president Rick Welts, both openly gay, “penis touchers” and would remark that they were “going to hell.” Jackson also reportedly accused team employees of “being influenced by the devil” and regularly tried to pit the locker room against the front office.

While these specific allegations have never been made public, they are in line with past allegations against Jackson, particularly the homophobia. Warriors co-owner Joe Lacob said after Jackson was fired from the team that the coach “couldn’t get along with anybody else in the organization”.

It is reasonable to assume as an employee covering the NBA for ESPN at the time that Ethan Sherwood Strauss would have been aware of the story and it never seeing the light of day. Still, he does not have any first-hand accounts of ESPN’s decision or what was in the story on the record.

Sports Online

PodcastOne Expands Sports Offerings, Adds Nick Swisher, Bobby Portis and Chris Howard to Lineup

PodcastOne is growing its lineup of sports show offerings by adding podcasts from a World Series champion, NBA champion and a former NFL running back.

Jordan Bondurant

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PodcastOne

PodcastOne is growing its lineup of sports show offerings by adding podcasts from a World Series champion, NBA champion and a former NFL running back.

The company announced it has brought on Nick Swisher, Bobby Portis and Chris Howard to add to its already stacked slate of programming that includes shows from Robert Horry, Michael Irvin, Jay Cutler and “Stone Cold” Steve Austin.

“With the growing PodcastOne sports vertical, we are producing and developing exclusive sports content shows from some of the most recognizable names in the game, adding to our diverse roster of original programming that advertisers and listeners won’t get from other networks,” said PodcastOne president Kit Gray. “Our sports hosted shows offer something for everyone, from the parquet floors of the world of basketball to the spectacle of the wrestling ring.”

Swisher, who will host The Nick Swisher Show, expressed his excitement at the opportunity to tell stories and interview stars from the world of sports and culture.

“My curiosity for the world around me from baseball to books, from coaches to community and from inspirational stories of triumph to seemingly insurmountable moments of failure knows no bounds,” Swisher said. “I’m amped to be sharing stories with fans and listeners, and I’m so excited to partner with PodcastOne to bring my podcast to life.”

Current Milwaukee Bucks forward Bobby Portis will roll out a weekly show called Keep It A Buck where he’ll offer an inside look at the week that was in the NBA while interviewing current and former players.

Howard’s show, Plugged In with Chris Howard, will take a look at some of the biggest headlines in the NFL and get to the bottom of those stories. He’ll also interview athletes and other stars from the world of entertainment to give listeners plenty of behind-the-scenes scoops.

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Sports Online

Amazon’s Thursday Night Football Ratings Up In Week 4

That figure represents growth from last week’s Steeler-Browns game which averaged 11.03 million viewers.

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Bengals-Dolphins
Sam Greene/The Enquirer / USA TODAY NETWORK

Amazon Prime Video is the first to tout its NFL success in Week 4 of the season. The week’s first game, the Thursday Night Football matchup between the Miami-Dolphins and Cincinnati Bengals, averaged 11.7 million viewers.

That figure represents growth from last week’s Steeler-Browns game which averaged 11.03 million viewers. That number also represents a massive increase over last year’s Week 3 game from last year (Jaguars-Bengals) which averaged 8 million viewers. That game aired on the NFL Network.

Amazon also noted that the streaming service gathered 13.4 million viewers across all platforms for the Thursday night game.

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Sports Online

Julian Edelman Considers Himself A Pioneer

“I’ve been a football player since I was 8 years old, but I did have other interests. Now that I am done, I get to explore that.”

Ricky Keeler

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Since his playing days with the New England Patriots ended after the 2020 season, Julian Edelman has kept himself busy with his role on Inside the NFL and now co-hosting the Games with Names podcast with comedian Sam Morril. So, what was Edelman looking for with his post-football endeavors?

Edelman was a guest on the most-recent episode of the Half-Forgotten History podcast with Trey Wingo and he said that the vibe that Inside The NFL has with Phil Simms, James Brown, Brandon Marshall, Michael Irvin, and Ray Lewis was something that he was looking for.

“With Inside the NFL, I have those guys and there’s a camaraderie. We get to have that breaking bread and just locker room kind of vibe. On the podcast, it’s the same thing.”

The MVP of Super Bowl XLIII mentioned that the key to doing the things he does now in his post-career came from the way him and his team were able to use social media to build his own brand and help ease the transition from a playing career to a member of the media.

“When I retired, I was fortunate enough to put a good team around me for all of my off-the-field things. We built a brand through social media. Kind of pioneers of this whole thing with social and e-commerce and millennial/Gen-Z things. It helped me land a role on Inside the NFL and go and have an ability to start a podcast, Games With Names. It’s been good and it honestly helps with the transition.”

Now that Edelman’s playing days are in the past, he said that he now has the opportunity to do things that he was always interested in since he was a kid, but did not have the time for and he is grateful for the opportunities that the NFL has allowed him to have.

“I’ve been a football player since I was 8 years old, but I did have other interests. Now that I am done, I get to explore that. I am so grateful for football and for the game just because it has given me the opportunity to do things that are fun and amazing.”

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