Almost two years ago, Andrew Marchand of the New York Post reported Stephen A. Smith signed a five-year deal. That would make him ESPN’s highest-paid sports commentator with an annual salary approaching $8 million a year.
However, according to Richard Deitsch of The Athletic, Stephen A. Smith is making around $12 million.
Smith is widely considered the face of the World Wide Network. Earlier this year, Smith talked about being the company’s face on The Breakfast Club with Angela Yee, DJ Envy, and Charlamagne Tha God.
” I think about it a little bit now because of the check that I get. The fact that I got that new contract, alright,” Smith said.
“I never wanted to hear that before my last contract because my attitude was, I ain’t getting paid like it. So I don’t want to hear that nonsense y’all can [speak on that] nonsense all want to, but these people what I deserve. I earned money/ revenue that I generate, but it is safe to say after this new contract.
I can’t really say that now. So, because of that, I have to change my tune just a touch and recognize the fact I’m the face of ESPN. But, what I am most proud of is that they never asked me to compromise something I would never compromise, and that’s my blackness. For me, I pride myself in that I am not just a black man. I’m a brotha. That is just who I’m regardless, what people want to say, and how they want to come at me.”
So, with that being said, the company’s face made some comments on his show on Wednesday morning that caught some people off guard on First Take. The panel of Smith, Molly Qerim, Max Kellerman, and Kendrick Perkins talked about Giannis Antetokounmpo’s 50 points, 14 rebounds, and two assists. Qerim asked was the best performance in a closeout game in finals history.
“It is right there. It is hard for me to eclipse [Michael] Jordan’s 45 because it was a game-winning shot, It was pressure it was on the road against the loaded Utah Jazz team, and Michael Jordan delivered the goods,” said Smith.
“I got one of my boys Champ based out of Detriot, I’m about to block him for the entire summer. He thinks he knows basketball. It is important to mention his name because he is starving for attention when it comes to the sport of basketball. Kendrick Perkins, Molly, Max Kellerman, his name is Champ and based out of Detriot because it is so important to him. To receive recognition, he is starving for it, that he texts me more than my daughters when it comes to the sport of basketball. Just an annoying ass person I’m getting ready to block him for the whole summer.”
Champ caught wind of the Smith’s comments and posted a picture on Instagram of a chessboard with the King as the last piece standing. with the caption
“The KING ONLY COMES OUT WHEN THREATEN” -rh
“No need for me to clap back it speaks for itself #IknowTheTruth.”
With the post, Champ is clearly saying Smith feels threatened. I have spoken to Champ on numerous occasions off of the Clubhouse App and had great banter with him. The thing is, why would Smith blast his friend on national television?
When he has spoken highly of him over the years.