In the latest sign that newspapers are a dying breed, Washington Post columnist Michael Wilbon is leaving the paper to pursue a larger role with ESPN/ABC.
The former Post intern turned into one of the greatest sports columnists in the business, covering everything from the Summer and Winter Olympics to the NBA Finals.
While I appreciate Wilbon on Pardon the Interruption and eager on his increased role with ESPN/ABC, a part of me is sad to see another newspaper person get swallowed up by the bigger payday television giants are able to provide.
The announcement from Washington Post management is below:
“In many respects this should come as no surprise to anyone here, but it doesn’t mean that making this announcement is any easier. The ESPN/ABC rocket ship that Michael Wilbon has been riding the past several years has finally left our orbit. Wilbon will soon be leaving the Post – a place he has called home for nearly 32 years – as he takes on an even greater role for his networks and their parent company, Disney.
Mike is many things. Talented. Gracious. Smart. Witty. He’ll tell you that despite his increasing fame and renown, in his mind he still considers this newspaper to be the only place he’s ever worked. So this decision did not come easy for him. In fact, he long hoped that he would not have to make it.
We’ll have occasions to toast Mike in the weeks ahead. But for now, let us just say that for a kid from Northwestern who began as an intern here in the summer of 1979 and went on to amass 5,982 bylines in Sports (before ArkType stopped counting with the arrival of Methode), 34 bylines on A1, 7 bylines in Metro, 3 in Style, 2 in Business, 2 in the Magazine and 1 in Outlook, it’s been one heck of a ride. We’ll make him earn a few more bylines before the end of the year. ”
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