NPR Roasted for Announcing Maria Taylor is Leaving ESPN with Photo of Kimberley Martin: ‘They Just Chose a Random Black Woman’
After being reported for weeks, ESPN and host Maria Taylor released a joint announcement Wednesday morning, stating both sides were unable to reach a new contract agreement.
NPR aggregated the news, but they did so with one epic blunder, using a photo of Taylor’s ESPN colleague Kimberley A. Martin. Martin tweeted a screenshot of the mistake, promising that the photo NPR used is of her, not her departing colleague Maria Taylor.
— Kimberley A. Martin (@ByKimberleyA) July 21, 2021
NPR has corrected the error and apologized – chalking up the mistake to an incorrect AP caption.
“Because of an error in an AP caption, this post previously featured an image of ESPN reporter Kimberley Martin instead of Maria Taylor,” NPR wrote in a Tweet. “We apologize for the error.”
But Twitter nonetheless roasted NPR for the gaffe:
Would be kinda funny if NPR also used this photo as Rachel Nichols. pic.twitter.com/K9sxWMdpiZ
— Michael Grant (@MichaelGrant_CJ) July 21, 2021
— Neil Best (@sportswatch) July 21, 2021
They just choose a random Black woman with a microphone huh?!?!?! pic.twitter.com/VTN10yTOHB
— Knicksfan4Life662 (@Bad_Azz662) July 21, 2021
Oh. No. 🤦🏽♀️ https://t.co/mAXZx6gLPR
— Kayla Braxton (@KaylaBraxtonWWE) July 21, 2021
— Janelle Fiona Griffith (@janellefiona) July 21, 2021
Taylor was pulled into the center of controversy at ESPN earlier this month, when the New York Times leaked a private conversation of Rachel Nichols commenting on diversity within the company. The audio, which was recorded last summer, features Nichols implying ESPN gave the NBA Finals hosting job to Taylor because she is Black.
Taylor’s contract with ESPN expired July 20, meaning Tuesday night’s NBA Finals Game 6 was her last broadcast with the Disney-owned sports network. News of Taylor leaving ESPN had been circling for weeks, after both sides reportedly remained millions of dollars apart on a new contract. According to Andrew Marchand of the New York Post, Taylor is likely headed to NBC, with a contract expected in time for her to contribute to their Tokyo Olympics coverage.
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