Stephen A Smith is apparently closer to becoming the sole face of ESPN’s First Take.
According to a report from Front Office Sports, longtime host Max Kellerman is expected to be removed from Fist Take in favor of Smith taking on rotating guest hosts in a format which was described as “Stephen A. vs the World” by an ESPN insider.
BREAKING: Max Kellerman’s nearly five-year long stint on ESPN’s “First Take” with Stephen A. Smith may be coming to an end.
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— Front Office Sports (@FOS) August 18, 2021
Max Kellerman’s nearly five-year long stint on ESPN’s “First Take” may be coming to an end.
Kellerman could leave his debate chair opposite Stephen A. Smith and Molly Qerim Rose for more extended duty on TV and ESPN Radio, sources told Front Office Sports.
The decision is not finalized, said sources, but if Kellerman leaves, Smith is not expected to have a daily debate partner. Instead, he could debate various ESPN personalities as well as high-profile guests.
“It could be Stephen A. vs the World,” said one source.
According to the report Kellerman is still expected to stay at ESPN but with a different role within the network.
Even if if Kellerman leaves “First Take,” he’s still expected to play a very prominent role on ESPN. He’s hosted the eponymous “Max Kellerman Show” on ESPN Radio since 2020. He also has his own boxing TV show on ESPN2.
Sources speculated Kellerman could also join the morning radio show, “Keyshawn, JWill & Zubin,” with Keyshawn Johnson, Jay Williams and Zubin Mehenti. Mehenti has missed significant time on the show due to health problems.