SportsCenter with Stephen A. Smith to Serve as ESPN NBA Pregame Show on Wednesdays
The Show Debuts Oct. 23 with Special Guests Magic Johnson and Michael Wilbon
- Scott Van Pelt to Lead Wednesday NBA Halftime Coverage
ESPN will debut SportsCenter with Stephen A. Smith on Wednesday, Oct. 23, at 7 p.m. ET. The 30-minute show, hosted by Smith, will serve as the pregame telecast for Wednesday NBA games on ESPN that begin at 7:30 p.m. The show will air throughout the regular season and during the NBA Playoffs.
The debut episode of SportsCenter with Stephen A. Smith will lead into ESPN’s first NBA game of the regular season: the Boston Celtics vs. the Philadelphia 76ers. Naismith Basketball Hall of Famer Earvin “Magic” Johnson and ESPN commentator Michael Wilbon will join Smith for the debut episode. Additionally, ESPN Senior NBA Insider Adrian Wojnarowski will contribute reports and commentary to the show. The first show will include special content on 76ers star Ben Simmons.
SportsCenter host Scott Van Pelt will host ESPN’s NBA halftime coverage on Wednesdays every week starting on Oct. 30. SportsCenter with Scott Van Pelt will continue to air immediately following ESPN NBA Wednesday doubleheaders. Rachel Nichols will lead halftime coverage on Oct. 23.
The first episode of SportsCenter with Stephen A. Smith will emanate from ESPN’s Los Angeles Production Center, followed by several on-site, courtside telecasts.
SportsCenter with Stephen A. Smith early season schedule:
|Wed, Oct 23||7 p.m.||ESPN Los Angeles Production Center|
|Wed, Oct 30||7 p.m.||In Boston prior to Milwaukee Bucks at Boston Celtics|
|Wed, Nov 6||7 p.m.||In Houston prior to Golden State Warriors at Houston Rockets|
|Wed, Nov 13||7 p.m.||In Houston prior to LA Clippers at Houston Rockets|
|Wed, Nov 20||7 p.m.||ESPN New York Seaport District Studios|
Stephen A. Smith:
“This is what it’s all about. This is what I have been waiting for. Stephen A. hosting in prime time, serving NBA fans with the information and passion that you’ve come to know from me.”
Stephen A. Smith adds this weekly NBA pregame show to his current daily shows First Take on ESPN and The Stephen A. Smith Show on ESPN Radio. Smith has also hosted several SportsCenter Specials on site prior to NBA Finals games in recent years.
Dave Roberts, ESPN vice president, production:
“Stephen A. Smith’s connection with all aspects of the NBA is a huge competitive advantage that truly differentiates our network. His tireless and exemplary work ethic will serve sports fans extremely well when they tune in before marquee games on Wednesday nights throughout this highly anticipated season.”
For ESPN’s full NBA pregame plans, visit ESPN Press Room.