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Will Cain Says Last 6 Months Influenced Decision To Leave ESPN

“As two hosts who have been at times criticized by their audience for not sticking to sports, Cowherd and Cain offered their beliefs on how to navigate the inclusion of political and social issues.”

Brandon Contes

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A news commentator, turned sports host, and back to news as the political conversation continues to become more prevalent, Will Cain has had an interesting media career. Cain joined FOX Sports Radio’s Colin Cowherd over the weekend to discuss a variety of topics including why he recently left ESPN for FOX News. 

Cain told Cowherd sports has always been a core part of his life and when he joined ESPN in 2015, he didn’t want to be part of the political conversation anymore. 

“It didn’t feel productive, it didn’t feel important, it didn’t feel like I had a place in that conversation,” Cain explained on The Herd-Saturday Special podcast. But five years later, at a time where there is so much heightened political division in the country, Cain now believes he has something important to contribute to the conversation. 

Cain said he was very happy at ESPN, hosting his daily show on their national radio network, while also regularly contributing to First Take. As ESPN’s primary conservative voice, Cain’s opinions were of the minority on the more leftist network, but he doesn’t believe his voice is the minority across the country.

“The direction of the country over the last six months…it really impacted my decision on what I want to be talking about every day,” Cain told Cowherd. And that decision was ultimately to leave ESPN and join FOX & Friends Weekend.

‘Stick to sports’ is a frequently debated theme in sports radio, but in recent months it’s becoming more difficult to separate sports from political or social issues. As two hosts who have been at times criticized by their audience for not sticking to sports, Cowherd and Cain offered their beliefs on how to navigate the inclusion of political and social issues. 

When organizing his show, Cowherd said he considers sports the freeway, but he occasionally takes the exit ramp to discuss political issues. If he exits, his goal is to always get back on the freeway as soon as possible. Cain acknowledged an understanding that his audience was tuning in for sports first, but when he did veer, he wasn’t going to aggressively return to the “freeway” as Cowherd described it. 

“Let me be honest with you about my biases, my beliefs,” Cain said of his approach to discussing political or social issues on sports radio. “I don’t want to hide them from you and in response I want to hear yours…the biggest mistake we can make is to box people out – tell them ‘you’re wrong, you’re racist, you don’t belong in the conversation.’ That’s not what I wanted to do, I want to be honest about who I was and invite everybody else to tell me how I was wrong.” 

The two media stars also had an interesting take on social media, which they agree is not real life, but it still has an outside influence on real life. Cain noted the majority of TV and radio shows organize their programming based on what’s trending on Twitter.

“Twitter has this outside influence on institutional media, and then it clearly can influence the radical fringes,” Cain said. “Now what we see is those radical fringes are influencing real life, by taking to the street and creating chaos.”

Cowherd added that a lot of the protesting in the streets was caused by the abnormally high unemployment rates, stemming from the global pandemic. But Cowherd painted a cheerier picture for our country’s outlook after calling it the strangest year of his life.

“I’m proud of my neighbors,” Cowherd said. “I think we’ve overcome a lot this year and I think brighter days ahead.” 

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Draymond Green, JJ Redick Sell Out Live Podcast Show

The show will collaborate for the first time and it will mark an interesting time in the thrusting of new media onto the public consciousness.

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Old Man Draymond

The two new and most visible faces of the new media influx have teamed up for a live show that will take place in New York City. Draymond Green and JJ Redick are bringing their respective podcasts to the stage for a live experience.

On Monday (June 27), Draymond Green’s The Draymond Green Show and JJ Redick’s The Old Man and the Three will seek to entertain an already sold out audience at The City Winery in New York City.

The show will collaborate for the first time and it will mark an interesting time in the thrusting of new media onto the public consciousness. JJ Redick has earned universal praise for how he has handled his career post-retirement from the NBA, including appear often opposite Stephen A. Smith on ESPN’s First Take as well as the network’s myriad of other programming.

Draymond Green has been very public with his podcast that has very publicly recorded episodes minutes after Warriors games. He has recently invoked his mantra that he isn’t a part of the media (despite signing a contract with Turner Sports and Colin Cowherd’s The Volume). Instead he insists he is a part of the aforementioned new media.

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Scott Van Pelt Not Hurt By Draymond Green’s “New Media” Comment

“He’s the one that said it. Isn’t he the one who said he’s new media? I was just trying to give him credit in saying, ‘Look, you now have control of your narrative and you can go do your podcast now.’”

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Scott Van Pelt

We have heard an awful lot in the fast month about “new media” with a large section of that discussion coming in regards to athletes in or formerly in the NBA. One such interaction was between a member of that new media and Scott Van Pelt.

After Game 5 of the NBA Finals, a victorious Draymond Green was interviewed on SportsCenter with Scott Van Pelt. In the interview, Van Pelt asked Green about dealing with the outside “noise” around the Finals. After Green gave a to-be-expected type answer, Van Pelt followed-up with the initial comment that start a wave.

Van Pelt: You’re part of the media now and you get to control the conversation from your perspective and I know you’ll-

Green: New media.

He then corrected Van Pelt’s assertion that Green had stated Stephen A. Smith was new media by saying:

Green: And by the way go watch The Draymond Green Show. I said Stephen A. sometimes acts like the new media. Sometimes he doesn’t. That’s on you, but nonetheless, don’t just lump me in with media, baby. It’s the new media.

Scott Van Pelt appeared on the SI Media Podcast and was asked about this exchange.

“I didn’t get that,” Van Pelt said of Green’s resistance in being associated with the word “media.”

“He’s the one that said it. Isn’t he the one who said he’s new media? I was just trying to give him credit in saying, ‘Look, you now have control of your narrative and you can go do your podcast now.’”

Van Pelt went on about Green’s categorizing of Smith and other media as a separate column of media.

“I guess what Draymond actually said was sometimes he’s new media. I don’t give a shit who’s what…I think now as it relates to media, there’s no new and old because people that are in the old media are doing the new media and people that are in new media are cutting through in ways that people in old media didn’t think they ever would many years ago. I guess all I’m saying is whatever Stephen A. is, he exists in both lanes and Draymond, clearly his content cuts through on his podcast or with me.

I wasn’t hurt by it. I didn’t take it like he was mad at me. I was just correcting the semantics. It didn’t trouble me. Whatever. However Draymond frames what Stephen A. Smith is or what any of us are, it doesn’t feel important. I think it’s important he has that place where he wants to do his thing. And I think people are interested in hearing from the guy that was just out there not long after saying what he has to say.”

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Big Cat Asks For Listeners’ Help Booking Kevin Durant on Pardon My Take

“On a recent edition of the podcast, Big Cat talked about how the Brooklyn Nets star has continued to snub requests to come on the show.”

Jordan Bondurant

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Barstool’s Big Cat has been trying to book NBA star Kevin Durant on Pardon My Take for five years, but the former MVP just won’t say yes.

On a recent edition of the podcast, Big Cat talked about how the Brooklyn Nets star has continued to snub requests to come on the show.

“We want Kevin Durant on this show, and he has just alpha-ed me so hard at this point,” Big Cat said. “I need people to start replying to his tweets saying just go on Pardon My Take.”

It’s not like KD has given Big Cat the cold shoulder. Big Cat said Durant has responded to his DMs on Twitter before, even wishing him Happy Thanksgiving one year. But so far all attempts to get Durant on PMT have been futile.

“Maybe if we start getting some rings, then he’ll be like, ‘Yeah they’re an elite team, and I want to join up with them. And maybe I can help them win something,'” PFT Commenter said, referencing the fact that PMT is yet to be recognized with any podcasting awards.

Durant did more or less tell the podcast on Twitter he wasn’t interested on Wednesday.

Durant’s response probably still won’t deter Big Cat from trying to get Durant on the show, but at least they know where KD stands.

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