It’s contract re-signing season over at ESPN right now. Dan Le Batard, Paul Finebaum, and Laura Rutledge are among those who recently re-signed with the Worldwide Leader. Now comes news of another familiar name getting locked down for the foreseeable future. Linda Cohn, who has been with ESPN for over 26 years, has signed a new deal with the company to make sure she extends her record-setting number of SportsCenter appearances and does much more.
Cohn originally joined ESPN in 1992, anchoring her first SportsCenter on July 11, 1992. By the time 2016 rolled around, she had anchored her 5,000th episode of the highlight show, putting her atop the list of everyone who has ever sat at the desk. In 2017, she was inducted into the National Sports Media Association (NSMA) Hall of Fame.
Not only will Cohn remain a SportsCenter anchor but she will also see an increased role in ESPN’s coverage of hockey. She’ll continue to work as the host of the ESPN+ hockey program In the Crease, which will expand to five nights a week for the upcoming NHL season. Cohn will also handle hockey-related interviews and features for SportsCenter and other ESPN platforms.
“It means a lot to me to stay with one franchise and one place for my entire career,” said Cohn in an ESPN release. “I wanted to be with ESPN and am so happy to have this opportunity. I don’t feel like someone who’s been at ESPN for 26-plus years. I’ll always have a passion for sports. It’s part of my DNA. It’s still an adrenaline rush for me.”
Cohn hasn’t been afraid to be critical of her longtime employer. In 2017, she spoke frankly about the way the network was mixing potentially political themes into its coverage and how that might have upset “old-school” viewers. She also balked at some the poor business decisions the network had made which might have had an effect on employee layoffs. At the time it was said those comments irked ESPN brass, but she did not receive any formal punishment. She remains a highly respected colleague by many in the company.
Cohn is scheduled to co-anchor the 11 p.m. ET edition of SportsCenter on Sunday, July 22 with Keith Olbermann, reuniting two of the most iconic hosts of the program.