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NHL Network Airing 4th Annual All-Female NHL Now

NHLN’s Jamie Hersch, Lauren Gardner, Jackie Redmond and Kendall Coyne Schofield will co-host the fourth annual all-female production.

Kate Constable

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To celebrate International Women’s Day, NHL Network will be airing an all-female edition of NHL Now on Monday at 4 p.m. ET, according to Awful Announcing’s Andrew Bucholtz.

NHLN’s Jamie Hersch, Lauren Gardner, Jackie Redmond and Kendall Coyne Schofield will co-host the fourth annual all-female production.

Noted in a release from the NHL, the show in an “initiative by the NHL and NHLPA to celebrating diversity and inclusion in hockey, the show will feature women across the sport of hockey providing analysis on the top NHL storylines, in-depth previews of the six games featured that night, and interaction with viewers via NHL Network’s social media platforms.”

“We know that representation matters,” said Jamie Hersch. “If girls grow up seeing women talking about hockey, it becomes normal and they think, ‘I can do that someday, too.’ Whether it’s women or people of color, expanding the image of who boys, girls, women and men see as hockey broadcasters and analysts inherently helps to make our sport more inclusive,”

“My favorite part of this now annual tradition is that we approach it just like every other NHL Now,” said Jackie Redmon. “We’re still covering hockey. We just happen to all be women. I think it’s important that we treat it the same as we do every show, not like it’s some special occasion, because my hope is, that one day it won’t be.”

Lauren Jbara and Blake Bolden will also join the program, as well as four female correspondents who will provide reports ahead of particular games: Christine Simpson on Montreal-Vancouver, Sarah McLellan on Vegas-Minnesota, Sonia Tydingco on St. Louis-San Jose, and Lyndsey Fry on Arizona-Colorado, per the NHL.

“Fry’s inclusion is particularly notable; a former U.S. Olympian, she joined the Coyotes in January as a radio analyst, and on Monday night, she’ll be an analyst on their TV broadcast on Fox Sports Arizona.”

Sports TV News

Stephen A. Smith: ‘I Don’t Feel Obligated To Agree With Black Community’

“I want the Black community to always know that they have somebody in me that’s going to at least tell the world what we’re feeling and why, whether I agree with it or not.”

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Stephen A. Smith is out promoting his new memoir Straight Shooter. He recently sat down for a conversation with Men’s Health magazine.

Interviewer Rachel Epstein covers a wide variety of topics with Smith. Some are about what can be found in the book. Some are about the First Take star’s public perception.

She asked how Smith balances the responsibility of representing the Black community with his brand. On ESPN, Smith is known for being unique and unapologetic for his sometimes over-the-top persona.

“Number one by being fair,” he said. “By trying to gather as much information and educate myself on issues as much as I possibly can.”

He added that he has never felt pressure to think a certain way or say a certain thing. Even if pressure existed, he prides himself on not giving in to it.

“I never feel an obligation to agree with my community. I believe we all have a right to think the way we want to think. But I do feel a responsibility to make sure that the perspective emanating from my community is heard, even if I disagree.”

Stephen A. Smith is one of the highest-paid and most visible employees at ESPN. He said that a certain responsibility comes along with that status. He wants the Black community to know that even if he doesn’t agree, he will make sure people know what he is hearing when he is on TV talking about an important subject.

“I want the Black community to always know that they have somebody in me that’s going to at least tell the world what we’re feeling and why, whether I agree with it or not.”

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Sports TV News

Kathryn Tappen Joining NBC’s Big Ten Coverage

“Tappen was in line to replace Michele Tafoya as the sideline reporter for Sunday Night Football but was passed over by the network in favor of Melissa Stark.”

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NBC has tabbed Kathryn Tappen as its sideline reporter for the network’s upcoming coverage of Big Ten football, according to a report from Andrew Marchand of The New York Post.

According to Marchand, Tappen was in line to replace Michele Tafoya as the sideline reporter for Sunday Night Football but was passed over by the network in favor of Melissa Stark.

Tappen has hosted Notre Dame football’s studio coverage and Peacock Sunday Night Football Final. She also worked as NBC’s lead interviewer for its coverage of the PGA Tour, but left that broadcast team at the end of 2022 as part of the network’s larger shakeup of its golf coverage.

The appointment of Kathryn Tappen conceivably concludes the Big Ten on NBC broadcast crew. Noah Eagle and Todd Blackledge are expected to pair as the network’s play-by-play announcer and color analyst, respectively. NBC has yet to officially unveil its coverage plans for the 2023 college football season.

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Sports TV News

Peter King: Sean McVay Wants to be a Star, ‘Not Just Some Guy on TV’

“I do think he had some regret over not taking a two- or three-year hiatus last year and taking one of the big TV jobs. Amazon? Maybe FOX? But if he really wanted to jump after winning the Super Bowl, he would have.”

Jordan Bondurant

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L.A. Rams head coach Sean McVay will remain at his post for the 2023-24 season. The team tweeted that news Friday afternoon, seeming to, at least for now, put the rumors of McVay leaving coaching for a TV job to rest.

ProFootballTalk’s Peter King wrote in Football Morning in America on Monday that McVay understands the kind of position on television he’s looking for may not necessarily be there for him.

“I don’t think that was the only thing about TV that appealed to him, but I don’t think McVay was interested in being Just a Guy on TV,” King wrote. “I do think he had some regret over not taking a two- or three-year hiatus last year and taking one of the big TV jobs. Amazon? Maybe FOX? But if he really wanted to jump after winning the Super Bowl, he would have.”

King noted that McVay has been told to “Do what makes you happy” by folks with the Rams. He also said he believes coaching is what Makes McVay happy. Especially with a chance to shake up his coaching staff and being involved in trying to bring the team back from a 5-12 season in their follow-up campaign to winning the Super Bowl.

“He wants to be challenged, and this staff wasn’t doing it,” King said. “Offensive coordinator Liam Coen may not have been what McVay wanted in an OC—a coach who would challenge him and bring new ideas to him—and that could be why he’s going back to the University of Kentucky as a coordinator.”

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