LeBron James and JJ Redick on their Mind the Game podcast CREDIT: Mind the Game

Shannon Sharpe knows what a successful podcast looks like — he has two of them.

But what makes Club Shay Shay and Nightcap work is not exactly rooted in anyone’s acumen. Of course, Sharpe has a unique perspective and offers football knowledge and wisdom beyond the surface level; that goes for Chad (Ochcino) Johnson, as well. But the main selling point here is the entertainment factor that each show brings.

That’s why Sharpe offered the assessment he did of LeBron James and JJ Redick’s Mind the Game podcast. During Monday’s edition of First Take, Sharpe argued that James and the Los Angeles Lakers head coach hopeful are going to have to adapt from talking about Xs and Os. Sharpe seems to think that if that’s all they continue to talk about, the podcast won’t have a long shelf life.

“I know you said that he and JJ had that podcast — Mind the Game — and it’s supposed to be Xs and Os,” Sharpe said. “Let me tell you something: if you ever want to start a podcast, and this is what I tell Stephen A., you’ve got to be able to adapt. You’ve got to be able to branch out. Because if all you talk about is Xs and Os, it ain’t gonna last very long.”

Smith agreed with the sentiment, saying that Kendrick Perkins has been saying that for months.

A basketball podcast about basketball is seemingly too novel a concept, even though a video of them drawing Xs and Os from three days ago on the account’s official YouTube page has 428k views as of this article’s writing.

Sharpe knows how to go viral.

But that doesn’t seem to be what James and Redick, for that matter, are focused on cultivating here. It’s a new medium designed to give us insights into how arguably one of the greatest basketball players of all time views the game from a schematic and analytical viewpoint.

The podcast likely won’t be for everybody, but if there was a need or want to talk about other things, James would’ve started a podcast a long time ago. And let’s not forget that Redick’s The Old Man and the Three podcast is pretty darn successful.

[Awful Announcing]

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.