Stephen A. Smith is coming to SportsCenter in a move that’s essentially extending the pregame show for NBA broadcasts on the network. ESPN announced on Monday that Smith would anchor a 30-minute SportsCenter With Stephen A. Smith starting later in October when the NBA returns to the network.
The move is apparently in addition to the work he already does on First Take and his radio show, which means that Smith will be extremely busy in the coming months.
“This is what it’s all about,” Smith said in an ESPN release. “This is what I have been waiting for. Stephen A. hosting in prime time, serving NBA fans with the information and passion that you’ve come to know from me.”
Smith’s first SportsCenter will debut on Wednesday at 7:30 ahead of the Sixers and Celtics starting the 2019 NBA season. According to the release, Magic Johnson and Michael Wilbon will join Smith on the broadcast and ESPN reporter Adrian Wojnarowski will contribute to the show as well. ESPN says the first episode will include “special content” about Ben Simmons, which makes sense given that it’s the leadup to Sixers-Celtics.
ESPN laid out the rest of Smith’s SportsCenter schedule until Nov. 20, with a broadcast in Boston on Oct. 30 for Celtics-Bucks, two broadcasts in Houston and shows from both Los Angeles and New York.
In a related story, here is Stephen A. and Michael Irving going at it after a big Cowboys win on Sunday night.
His SportsCenters will almost certainly have a basketball focus given what the show leads into, but hopefully we get some fun moments like this as well.