May 24, 2013; Miami, FL, USA; ESPN analyst Stephen A. Smith (left) interviews Indiana Pacers power forward David West (right) after game two of the Eastern Conference finals against the Miami Heat of the 2013 NBA Playoffs at American Airlines Arena. The Pacers won 97-93. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

NBA Countdown: Could Stephen A. Smith Become the Next Co-Host?

There’s been a lot of discussion on Bill Simmons’ tweets that appeared early in the morning about a joke that was edited out of SportsCenter. It’s no secret that Simmons appears unhappy with his new gig, and perhaps a name he mentions in those tweets may replace him.

The Big Lead had a great article posted on Friday that broke down exactly why Simmons’ tweets wasn’t big news. He’s been stressed from working on ESPN’s NBA pregame show, and the experiment of bringing in their best and most successful analyst that’s not an athlete may be coming to a close soon.

Perhaps Simmons is just upset that he can’t say a simple joke about Dwyane Wade going to Germany while Stephen A. Smith and Skip Bayless can get away with giving athletes demeaning nicknames on First Take.  But according to Jason McIntyre from TBL, Smith may want to change how he’s viewed by the public.

One source tells me that Smith is begging to join the show, and wants to go back to his roots as an NBA Insider. Another source tells me Smith would welcome a move that meant less First Take.

Last month, I was told Smith was not thrilled with the constant beating First Take receives on the internet, he was unhappy, and he feared the show’s backlash could be damaging his brand. Smith has separated himself from the clownish act of Skip Bayless in recent months – back in March, Smith landed a National McDonald’s TV ad. In May, he was in aStar Trek ad.

It’s a good move for Smith, considering FT doesn’t have much substance with real analysis and it’s mostly there to gain views and trends for ESPN. But he hasn’t lasted long in any position until coming back to ESPN Radio after departing from FOX Sports Radio a few years ago.

An interesting offseason awaits for ESPN’s NBA pregame show.

[Source: The Big Lead]

Tags: Bill Simmons ESPN NBA Stephen A Smith

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