Malike Andrews Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

While this week marked the unofficial return of the NBA with the league’s annual media days, ESPN’s Malika Andrews now finds herself in the news for a different and distressing reason.

According to TMZ, the NBA Countdown host has been granted a restraining order against a man accused of stalking ESPN talent, including herself, Stephen A. Smith and Molly Qerim. Per the report, 41-year-old Ahmed Abubakar of New Jersey is accused of sending Andrews threatening and harassing messages on the social media platform X and calling her on her unlisted phone number multiple times over this past summer.

Additionally, Andrews’ request for a restraining order states that Abubakar was arrested in August for allegedly showing up Qerim’s Connecticut home unannounced and is accused of recently traveling to ESPN’s Los Angeles facility in search of Andrews and Smith. A judge granted the restraining order, which orders Abubakar to stay at least 100 yards away from Andrews and others, including her fiancé and ESPN NBA reporter Dave McMenamin, hours after it was first filed with a hearing set for the later this month.

The 28-year-old Andrews has been one of ESPN’s fastest rising stars since first joining the company in 2018. After originally covering multiple high profile teams and players for the network, she was promoted to sideline reporter for the NBA Finals in 2021 after Rachel Nichols was removed from coverage after audio of disparaging comments she made about then-host Maria Taylor were leaked.

The following season, the Oakland native was announced as the fulltime host of ESPN’s daily NBA program, NBA Today — which replaced the Nichols vehicle The Jump — and in 2022 she became the first woman to ever host the NBA Draft. This past August, ESPN announced that Andrews would replace Mike Greenberg as the studio host for NBA Countdown and the NBA Finals.


About Ben Axelrod

Ben Axelrod is a veteran of the sports media landscape, having most recently worked for NBC's Cleveland affiliate, WKYC. Prior to his time in Cleveland, he covered Ohio State football and the Big Ten for outlets including Cox Media Group, Bleacher Report, Scout and Rivals.