Maria Taylor had her final ESPN broadcast on Tuesday night when the Bucks beat the Suns in Game 6 of the NBA Finals to win the championship, signing off of ABC’s brief postgame coverage alongside Adrian Wojnarowski and Jalen Rose, who thanked her for her work all season as the show was headed off the air.
On Wednesday, Taylor and ESPN confirmed that would indeed be the end of her tenure at the Worldwide Leader, with both sides offering brief statements kindly thanking the other. It has been reported for some time that NBC Sports was the frontrunner for Taylor’s services, and not long after the official release emerged of Taylor parting with ESPN, word broke from Andrew Marchand of the New York Post that Taylor was indeed headed to NBC and could join the company as soon as Friday for the start of their Olympics coverage from Tokyo.
For NBC, if a contract is completed, Taylor is expected to be part of its forthcoming Olympic coverage that begins in earnest on Friday.
While several sources said Taylor is headed to NBC, nothing is official yet. The top network spokesman is in Japan for the Olympics and did not immediately return messages.
It remains to be seen when exactly Taylor makes her NBC debut and in what role, but it’s a big get for NBC and opens Taylor up to a number of higher profile opportunities. With Al Michaels expected to leave the Sunday Night Football booth after the Super Bowl next year and Mike Tirico being the heir apparent to take over play-by-play duties, Taylor would be the frontrunner to take over the Football Night in America hosting duties. Her college football chops also mean Notre Dame football coverage is in play in the mean time, as well as other possible roles at the network — and with Amazon’s Thursday NFL game too.
In any case, Taylor seemingly won’t be off our television screens for very long, as she will apparently be popping up for Olympic coverage, either from studio stateside or in Tokyo, sooner than later.