Stephen A. Smith and Skip Bayless are two of the most disliked sports media analysts today. Both men are known for making controversial, hot takes that constantly upset various fan bases. Former ESPN member Dan Le Batard is one of those who vehemently dislikes those two, and he made sure to tell that to Smith’s face.
Smith made a guest appearance on Batard’s South Beach Sessions podcast, where the topic of conversation was about both Smith and his former Co-host Skip Bayless. Bayless reportedly left ESPN to start his own debate show “Undisputed: Skip And Shannon” with NFL Hall of Famer Shannon Sharpe.
Batard was blunt about who he believes is responsible for the current state of sports TV, putting the blame squarely at their feet. Smith took exception to this, arguing that there’s plenty of blame to go around:
“You can say that all you want to; I would say, who the hell are you?!” Smith said. “To sit up there and say me and him. What about you? Where the hell were you? Living under a rock? Teaching at Miami U? You were part of it too! You ain’t innocent!”
Smith didn’t stop there. He had much more he decided to unload:
“Those people who don’t have a journalism background, who don’t exercise journalistic ethics and beyond,” Smith said. “How are we responsible for that? When our background is based on that? Skip Bayless was a journalist for decades! I was a journalist for decades! We come on television, and those ethics are applicable.
When did it occur in my career that I ignored the journalistic tenets that came with the job?”
Though I may believe they had some role to play in how things are today in the world of sports TV, it is ultimately not their fault. “You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make them drink,” as the saying goes. The hour-long podcast episode can be watched down below, and found on Youtube.