Another big name has inked a deal with ESPN. Veteran NBA head coach Doug Collins has signed a deal with the “Worldwide Leader in Sports.” Collins’ multi-year deal will have him serving as an analyst on ESPN and ABC’s NBA Countdown. He will be in comfortable company when he starts his duties this season. He will be working alongside fellow NBA legends Earvin “Magic” Johnson, Jalen Rose, and Bill Simmons. The terms of Collins’ deal also will see him serve as an in-game analyst for select ESPN broadcasts. It also includes appearances on SportsCenter ESPN Radio, ESPN.com, and other ESPN programming.
Collins was enthusiastic about signing with ESPN in a statement released this week. “ESPN’s NBA coverage plays a leadership role in the way fans experience the sport, so I’m eager to share my basketball insights with our viewers,” he said. “Working with Magic, Jalen, Bill and the rest of my new ESPN colleagues will be a lot of fun.”
John Wildhack, ESPN Executive VP of Production was just as pleased with the new deal. He shared his thoughts in a prepared statement. “Doug Collins is a one of the most respected NBA voices and we’re thrilled to have him join NBA Countdown. Collins brings a contemporary coaching perspective, which will enhance the diverse discussion on Countdown. Additionally, Michael Wilbon will remain a leading authority for the NBA on ESPN while maintaining the flexibility to increase his in-studio appearances on our important Pardon The Interruption franchise.”
Collins has quite the resume on the court. He served eleven years as a head coach in the NBA, most recently with the Philadelphia 76ers. He reached the NBA playoffs seven times. As a player, he played a combined eight seasons in the ABA and NBA and is a four-time All-Star. His new deal with ESPN isn’t his first stint in front of the camera. He was a contributor to NBC’s NBA game coverage and Olympics coverage and has also served as a game analyst for Turner Sports. He was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2009. He received the prestigious Curt Gowdy Media Award in his induction.
NBA Countdown debuts Friday, November 1st at 7pm ET during a one-hour pre-game broadcast before ESPN’s season-opening doubleheader. The doubleheader kicks off at 8pm with a matchup of last season’s NBA Champion Miami Heat and the Brooklyn Nets. The second game features the San Antonio Spurs, last season’s runners-up taking on the Los Angeles Lakers. That game is currently scheduled for a 10pm ET broadcast.
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