Skip Byless is close to becoming the undisputed champion of contract negotiations.
He recently expanded a four-year, $ 32 million from his current network, FS1, after his previous employer, ESPN, tried to reunite him with former show partner Stephen A. Smith. The New York Post’s Andrew Marchand reported on Thursday. Sources told Marchand that Smith was a “driving force” in the chase.
MORE: Inside Bayless’s FS1 in 2016
It is unclear when the 69-year-old Bayless agreed to the new deal. He was nearing the end of his contract with Fox Sports last summer, which kept him away from ESPN with a four-year, $ 24 million contract to launch his own show, “Undefined”, in 2016 on FSP1. Bayless, Pro Football Hall of Famer Shannon Sharp and Jenny Taft co-hosted the weekday morning show.
Marchand reported that ESPN may have created a daily Bayless-Smith show on its ESPN + streaming service. The pair would also appear on ESPN properties such as telecasted to promote ESPN + at the time of the broadcast of “Monday Night Football”.
Fox Sports may give Bayles a solo show at noon on FA1 under its new deal, sources told Marchand, although it is unclear whether Bayless will do or move on to two shows.
Bayless and Smith became cable sports talk superstars with polarization work on the “first low”. Smith is now the host of “Kell First”, now working with Max Kellerman and Molly Kyrim. Marchand reported in November 2019 Smith signed a five-year extension of approximately $ 8 million a year to stay at ESPN.