Mark Jackson Mar 23, 2022; Los Angeles, California, USA; ESPN broadcaster Mark Jackson during the NBA game between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Philadelphia 76ers at Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

In an industry where broadcasting booths tend to get turned over every few years, one of the few constants was ABC/ESPN’s top NBA team, consisting of announcer Mike Breen and analysts Jeff Van Gundy and Mark Jackson. The key phrase in the sentence above is “was,” as the network has since moved on from Van Gundy, who was arguably the biggest name involved in ESPN’s latest round of layoffs. While rumors swirled about who would replace him, the conversation eventually shifted to speculation about Jackson’s future in the booth. That culminated in Jackson being let go at the end of last month in a decision that “shocked and dismayed” the analyst.

After spending the past several years with Van Gundy and Jackson, Breen will be paired with Doris Burke and Doc Rivers as the new top ABC/ESPN crew.

While Jackson’s statement outlined above shows the unexpectedness of the move, he has no ill will towards Rivers, a former NBA head coach himself. In fact, Jackson recently spoke with TMZ Sports and indicated that he’s not only has he spoken with Rivers, but there is no beef between the two.

“I wish Doc nothing but the best,” Jackson told TMZ Sports in an interview.

“He’s a Hall-of-Fame coach. A tremendous guy. And he’ll be great.”

As for Jackson’s next move, he said “It’ll be my best move.” He didn’t get into details, whether that will be in coaching or staying in the broadcasting industry, but told TMZ that he’s “excited for what God has for me.”

[TMZ Sports via The New York Post]

About Sam Neumann

Since the beginning of 2023, Sam has been a staff writer for Awful Announcing and The Comeback. A 2021 graduate of Temple University, Sam is a Charlotte native, who currently calls Greenville, South Carolina his home. He also has a love/hate relationship with the New York Mets and Jets.