ESPN announced that it will not renew Keith Olbermann’s contract, which is set to end July 31.
The outspoken Olbermann, who served as a SportsCenter anchor in the early days of ESPN before contentiously leaving in 1997, returned to the network in August 2013 to host the ESPN2 late-night series Olbermann. ESPN said the show will end sometime this month.
“Keith is a tremendous talent who has consistently done timely, entertaining and thought-provoking work since returning to ESPN. While the show’s content was distinctive and extremely high quality, we ultimately made a business decision to move in another direction. We wish Keith nothing but the best and trust that his skill and ability will lead him to another promising endeavor,” ESPN said in a statement.
The news was first reported byThose Guys Have All the Fun: Inside the World of ESPN coauthor James Andrew Miller.
Earlier this year, Olbermann was suspended by ESPN for a week following tweets he made about Penn State students.
In between his stints at ESPN, Olbermann was best known for hosting Countdown on MSNBC from March 2003 until he was suspended in October of 2010 for making political contributions. He returned to the show the next month but left the network in January 2011. He moved his Countdown show to Current TV, where he also served as chief news officer, until he was fired in March of 2012.
Olbermann's exit comes two months after ESPN's announcement that it would not renew the contract of another high-profile employee, Bill Simmons.