Former ESPN host Michelle Beadle has been outspoken in the media about her years-long beef with NBA star LeBron James. After claiming that the Los Angeles Lakers player tried to have her fired from ESPN on an episode of her podcast, she recently sat down with Ethan Strauss to imply that James also wanted to replace her on the network with another female host.
Last month, the 46-year-old brought Paul Pierce onto her podcast What Did I Miss?, where the two each discussed their take on James.
When the retired baller mentioned a “rumor that he got you fired from ESPN,“ Beadle nodded her head and replied, “He tried. He did try, yup.”
“I was like, ‘I’m honored I’m even on your mind. Thank you very much, sir. That’s a weird place for me to be.’” she continued. “I made fun of The Decision like 400,000 other talking heads did at the time. And I think for some reason that was it. So it wasn’t personal to begin with. Now it will always be personal, but it is what it is.”
The Decision was a 2010 television special detailing James’ big move from the Cleveland Cavaliers to the Miami Heat. That same year, Beadle made a parody video of the Cleveland-native’s “What should I do?” Nike ad on SportsNation. She mocked him for wasting time and being self-absorbed.
Beadle reportedly left ESPN in 2019 after ten years with the network.
Earlier this week, the former NBA Countdown host again brought up the sports champion, this time alleging that James also wanted her replaced by another host. On the House of Strauss podcast, the Italy-born reporter shared, “I think he has a person at the network that he wanted. He wanted her to be the host.”
Adding that James “does not like” her, Beadle continued, “I honestly have stopped trying to figure out why. But for some reason, it goes back years. I’ve been around Maverick Carter. He’s refused to shake my hand. I have no idea why.”
James has yet to acknowledge the claims publicly.