You might love him or hate him, but you probably still watch him. And thanks to you, energetic ESPN sports personality Stephen A. Smith is in line for a huge pay day.
According to the NYPost, Smith is reportedly getting a salary boost up to $10 million per year, which would make him the highest-paid on-air personality at ESPN.
Stephen A. Smith is set to become the highest-paid talent in ESPN history https://t.co/aWBIHS8fdT— New York Post Sports (@nypostsports) April 3, 2019
Stephen A. initially became known through ESPN's popular sports show First Take. His exaggerated antics, outlandish hot takes, and witty remarks drew audiences toward him. Smith, along with his fellow hot takes expert Skip Bayless, made First Take a show you just couldn't stop yourself from watching.
Bayless has moved on to another show at FS1, but ESPN knew that with Smith still on board, their product would still succeed. Bayless was replaced was Max Kellerman, and the show continued on seamlessly.
Stephen A. garners attention through the entertainment world, and his expected pay day reflects his popularity. It shouldn't be a surprise that he is a top priority at ESPN.
I don't like Screamin' A. Smith's style or shows, but you gotta respect him turning it into a massive payday— John Karalis (@RedsArmy_John) April 3, 2019
Stephen A. Smith is not someone you watch or listen to for expert analysis. He sensationalizes sports topics to entertain. His takes are always over the top, and you should always bet against his predictions, but you're never going to stop watching Stephen A. Smith.
He may not always know who's on the Chiefs, but he's No. 1 in our hearts.