Here's what the job market looks like for those laid off at ESPN.
There are roughly 100 now-former ESPN front-facing employees currently looking for new jobs.
What's the job market look for these people?
Sports Illustrated's Richard Deitsch published his weekly "Media Circus" column tonight and it includes some insight into what's next for many of the people laid off at the Worldwide Leader.
What is the employment market for those who lost their jobs at ESPN, particularly ones with name recognition? I asked a longtime agent who negotiates contracts for high-profile sports media people, including ESPNers. “If you are unique and excellent at what you do, there is a market,” the agent said. “If you are perceived as more fungible as many traditional anchors are at the moment, then there is less upside for you. The next shrinkage to look for in our biz is the consolidation of Regional Sports Networks. That also means probably 50 fewer spots. So those broadcasters should move on it now and get contracts locked in. It’s a buyer's market at the moment for talent who aren't perceived as unique, however these things always do ebb and flow.”
A lot of these people, unfortunately, are in tough situations.
They can get a new job that's going to pay them less than what they were making at ESPN, or continue to receive paychecks from ESPN but not work, likely decreasing their odds of landing in a good position at their next stop.
Many of those who lost their jobs have non-compete clauses in their deals, which means they can’t report within similar content silos until their contracts end. In order to do freelance work, at least as of now, they would have to report on entirely different beats than the ones they spent years developing at ESPN and elsewhere. Many are left with a brutal choice: Find a new job (hopefully) that will likely pay much less, or collect the remaining ESPN contract you signed but take yourself out of the job market for an extended period of time.
Some, like Danny Kanell, have already attempted to make inroads at new places.
Our thoughts are with all of the people laid off at ESPN as they try to get new jobs.