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Rachel Nichols leaving ESPN for CNN and Turner Sports

January 25, 2013|By Chuck Schilken
  • Rachel Nichols, shown interviewing Indianapolis Colts Coach Chuck Pagano earlier this year, is switching from ESPN to CNN and Turner Sports.
Rachel Nichols, shown interviewing Indianapolis Colts Coach Chuck Pagano… (Nick Wass / Associated Press )

Rachel Nichols will be covering the Super Bowl in New Orleans next weekend, only not for ESPN.

The popular sports reporter will be leaving her broadcast home of nine years to work for CNN and Turner Sports, the two companies announced Thursday. And her first assignment in her new gig will be the biggest sporting event of the year.

"I couldn't be more excited to join the CNN and Turner Sports family,” Nichols said. “I believe in [CNN Worldwide president Jeff Zucker's] vision for CNN, and have always admired the great work of Turner Sports and what [president of sales, distribution and sports David Levy] has done there. I’m looking forward to getting started at the Super Bowl."

Nichols was a correspondent for several ESPN shows, including  "SportsCenter", "NFL Countdown", "NBA Countdown" and "E:60," as well as a sideline reporter on "Monday Night Football." She also became the face of the network's wall-to-wall coverage of the Brett Favre retirement saga in recent years.

In her new job, she'll host a weekend CNN sports show that starts later this year and report on a variety of sports.

“We're just thrilled that a sports journalist of Rachel's stature and expertise will now be a regular part of the CNN lineup," Zucker said. "Her arrival, beginning next week, is an important step in expanding the range of programming and storytelling on CNN."

Turner Sports covers such leagues as the NBA, Major League Baseball, NCAA Division I basketball, NASCAR and PGA. Its television networks include TBS, TNT and truTV. 

The biggest question is: If Favre decides to come out of retirement yet again, which network will break the news? We can be pretty sure it won't be ESPN.

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