ESPN has announced today that they have released 100 of their employees in a huge shakeup on the network. The primary reason behind the decision is said to be dwindling ratings for their television shows along with a change in content strategy. As some already know, many viewers have been leaving the network despite ESPN pumping millions per year into new broadcast rights they have picked up or extended recently.
Topping the list of NHL employees leaving is Pierre Lebrun, who will now spend more time broadcasting for TSN as a result. He is joined by fellow Canadian Scott Burnside who has also been released by the network and alongside Pierre was one of their biggest hockey personalities.
Well folks, as you can tell by my new Twitter handle, I was also among the cuts today at ESPN.
— Pierre LeBrun (@PierreVLeBrun) April 26, 2017
After 13 years of sticks and pucks can share that as of today my tenure at ESPN is at a close. I look forward to the next adventure.
— Scott Burnside (@OvertimeScottB) April 26, 2017
When ESPN won rights to the World Cup of Hockey, rumors spread they had made an agreement to invest further into hockey but those rumors have failed to come true. We can certainly see that the chances are that it is no longer coming, with today’s news being the final nail in the coffin.
It remains to be seen where ESPN will go next, but today’s moves show that further investment in any sport, let alone hockey, looks a long way off at the moment.