Rachel Nichols is being criticized for comments she allegedly made about diversity at ESPN.
In a leaked recording obtained by the New York TimesNichols can be heard saying his colleague Maria Taylor got a job in the NBA Finals because ESPN “felt the pressure” over her “crappy long-standing record on diversity.”
“I wish Maria Taylor all the best in the world – she covers football, she covers basketball,” the host of The jump said last July in the audio. “If you need to give her more to do because you feel the pressure from your long-standing diversity record – which, by the way, I know personally on the female side – go for it. You just have to find it elsewhere. You’re not going to find it at my house or take my stuff away.
The audio was reportedly recorded on an ESPN camera she left behind, which continued her conversation with advisor Adam Mendelsohn and uploaded it to ESPN’s servers. After doing rounds internally, the clip was shared with the Time.
the NYT shared that the clip caused controversy within the network, with members of the NBA Countdown program unsure whether they should continue to appear. Nichols and Taylor were then allegedly kept away from each other on the air.
Nichols reportedly called herself a “victim of them trying to catch up for the same damage that affected me in the first place,” but was not punished for her actions, with the only person reprimanded apparently being a staff member. black who sent the video to Taylor.