ESPN’s marriage with Barstool Sports ended quickly in divorce, as the network decided to cancel its new show “Barstool Van Talk” after only one episode.
“While we had approval on the content of the show, I erred in assuming we could distance our efforts from the Barstool site and its content,” ESPN president John Skipper said in a statement Monday.
Skipper thanked “Van Talk” hosts Dan “Big Cat” Katz and PFT Commenter, both of whom also host the popular sports podcast “Pardon My Take.”
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“They delivered the show they promised,” Skipper said.
The two hosts replied with a statement on Twitter.
“We had a great time working on the show and were extremely excited about the future,” they wrote. “In times like these, we remember what a great philosopher once said: Success isn’t owned, it’s leased. And rent is due every day.”
The show raised hackles from “Sunday NFL Countdown” host Sam Ponder, who was a frequent target of Barstool Sports. After the show’s debut, Ponder took to Twitter to share her feelings regarding ESPN’s decision to host the show.
On Wednesday, Katz said opposition to the show ran deeper than Ponder.
“The timing on Sam Ponder’s tweet, the grudge that she kept — she had every right to be upset — but it was clear that it was put out there to undermine and cancel this show,” Katz said on “Pardon My Take.”
“And some other people at ESPN, we know who they are, I will never forgive you. … I really wish ESPN had stood tall on it, because I think it was s—-y ’cause they put us on and took us off. They should have never put us on the air,” he said. “It was mismanaged from the beginning.”
“Barstool is what it is. I stand by the last five years. … People keep saying we are selling out. I love what I’ve done, and this is the only place that would let me do it,” he said.
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