Report: ESPN, Maria Taylor facing possible split over salary in contract talks
Maria Taylor’s future at ESPN appears to be uncertain, according to a new report.
Andrew Marchand of the New York Post shares that Taylor’s contract with ESPN is set to expire soon and the two sides appear to be far on the UGA alumna’s salary if she stays with the World Wide Leader.
Marchand reports that last year, ESPN offered Taylor a salary that “would eventually reach” $5 million, a significant raise from her current salary of $1 million. According to Marchand’s sources, Taylor was looking for “Stephen A. Smith money.” Smith makes around $8 million annually.
Since last year’s $5 million offer, things have changed at ESPN, per Marchand. ESPN’s current offer for Taylor is believed to be in the $2-3 million range.
Marchand details that ESPN could be in a tricky situation next month. Taylor’s contract is set to expire on July 20. Taylor’s current ESPN responsibilities include hosting “NBA Countdown.” The NBA Finals could go until July 22 depending on the length of the series.
In addition to college football and the NBA, Taylor also contributes to some of ESPN’s NFL coverage. Marchand mentions future NFL opportunities could lead to Taylor leaving ESPN:
Amazon does like Taylor, according to sources, while NBC could potentially be creative. Both could have NFL hosting opportunities in the future, though nothing is currently available and it is unknown if there are any advanced talks.
The article describes Taylor’s “ultimate goal” as being “the next Robin Roberts.” If Taylor stays with ESPN/ABC/Disney, her new deal could include “Good Morning America” appearances, per Marchand.
Taylor’s ESPN bio states she joined ESPN as a college analyst & reporter in 2014.