The worldwide leader in sports is bringing on New Orleans Pelicans’ star CJ McCollum for NBA coverage, making him the second active NBA player to sign a deal with a major network.
McCollum, 30, graduated from Lehigh University with a journalism degree, has an extremely popular podcast, “Pull Up with CJ McCollum,” and has made past appearances on ESPN as an analyst.
Per ESPN, McCollum will be an analyst for the Finals and NBA Summer League, while also making cameos on studio shows — like “NBA Today” — throughout the year. Plus, they’re reportedly working on a podcast collaboration.
ESPN employed former player-turned-podcaster JJ Redick back in late October — adding to a crew of former NBA players, namely Richard Jefferson and Kendrick Perkins.
Warriors star forward Draymond Green signed a multiyear deal to contribute to TNT’s “Inside the NBA” studio show in late January, though Golden State’s Finals run has mostly kept him out of the studio.
It’s a bit unprecedented, but it appears most television networks are focusing on hiring current or former athletes, while doubling down on their major personalities.
The sports giant just spent $250 million on four sports media personalities in April. Bringing on McCollum should only bolster their already established reputation.