Neil Everett and Stan Verrett, courtesy of Twitter account Chargers—BoltUp

ESPN was dealt another blow with Thursday’s news that longtime SportsCenter anchor Neil Everett is leaving the network, departing after 23 glorious years. ESPN tried to retain him at a lower salary, which Everett rejected (you might remember Kenny Mayne left Bristol under similar circumstances in 2021), opting for a fresh start elsewhere. Like Chris Chelios, who suffered the same fate when his contract wasn’t renewed earlier this week, Everett finds himself a casualty of ESPN’s ongoing budget cuts with Disney looking to shed a mammoth $5.5 billion in costs company-wide.

Everett already has a couple irons in the fire—he hopes to expand his studio role with the Portland Trail Blazers next season and is also said to be working on several “side projects.” Still, even with Everett making fewer appearances in recent years, it’s sad he’ll no longer share a desk with Stan Verrett, his co-host of 14 years on the 1 AM ET edition of SportsCenter broadcast from ESPN’s Los Angeles studios.

First paired in 2009, Verrett and Everett made magic together, forming one of the great SportsCenter duos of all-time. Nothing, especially in the ever-evolving landscape of sports media, lasts forever, with ESPN experiencing a mass exodus in recent years, bidding farewell to Mike Golic, Trey Wingo, Dan Le Batard and Tom Rinaldi, among other industry voices.

Even bearing that harsh reality in mind, Verrett couldn’t help feeling nostalgic, sending off Everett with a heartfelt goodbye on Twitter.

While you can’t fault ESPN for splurging on Pat McAfee and other big names, there’s something to be said for the on-air bond Verrett and Everett shared for so many years. Viewers will miss their easy chemistry as late-night co-conspirators, kindred spirits who made reading highlights fun.

About Jesse Pantuosco

Jesse Pantuosco joined Awful Announcing as a contributing writer in May 2023. He’s also written for Audacy and NBC Sports. A graduate of Syracuse’s S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications with a master’s degree in creative writing from Fairfield University, Pantuosco has won three Fantasy Sports Writers Association Awards. He lives in West Hartford, Connecticut and never misses a Red Sox, Celtics or Patriots game.