JJ Redick Photo by Phil Ellsworth / ESPN Images

Since Doc Rivers’ unexpected January exit from the lead NBA on ESPN/NBA on ABC booth only a few months into his first season on the job, there’s been lots of discussion about what’s to come for that booth. At the moment, it’s just play-by-play voice Mike Breen and analyst Doris Burke, and there have been suggestions that it may stay as just the two of them. But there have also been reports that ESPN has considered adding either JJ Redick (more likely) or Richard Jefferson (a longer shot). And now, Andrew Marchand of The Athletic has a report suggesting the Redick addition is looking more and more likely:

That piece does mention that ESPN could still stick with the Breen/Burke tandem, but that the idea of adding Redick seems to be gaining steam. And that’s a notable change, as Marchand’s Jan. 29 report on this at The New York Post was more equivocal on the two-man/adding Redick options, but had Redick ahead of Jefferson. Here’s more from Marchand’s new piece, which calls Redick the “leading candidate to join ESPN’s NBA Finals Broadcast team”:

JJ Redick has emerged as the leading candidate to join Mike Breen and Doris Burke on ABC/ESPN’s NBA Finals broadcast, sources briefed on the network’s plans told The Athletic.

…ESPN has not officially offered Redick the promotion. ESPN has also considered going with just a two-person team of Breen and Burke. The network hopes to have everything finalized relatively soon with an internal goal of around next weekend’s All-Star break.

The network declined comment.

Of course, this is being reported as an incremental update rather than a sure thing, and one that still leaves open the possibility of keeping this a two-person booth. But it’s notable to see some seeming further momentum towards adding Redick. If ESPN does go that way, that’s going to be real interesting, with three-person booth chemistry often a challenge and with that challenge further exacerbated by midseason changes ahead of high-profile playoff and Finals games. We’ll see what they do.

[The Athletic]

About Andrew Bucholtz

Andrew Bucholtz has been covering sports media for Awful Announcing since 2012. He is also a staff writer for The Comeback. His previous work includes time at Yahoo! Sports Canada and Black Press.