Jason Whitlock destroys ESPN for promoting ‘unqualified’ Doris Burke to lead NBA analyst

Jason Whitlock went scorched earth on the four-letter network after it shockingly parted ways with beloved NBA analyst Mark Jackson, reportedly in favor of bringing in Doris Burke and Doc Rivers as its lead analysts for the upcoming NBA season. 

Whitlock, who hosts the daily Fearless with Jason Whitlock on BlazeTV, put forth a lethal rebuke of the seemingly inevitable elevation of Burke to a position which no female has previously held. 

While discussing the New York Post report with contributor – and fellow ex-ESPN employee – Steve Kim, Whitlock made sure to repeatedly mention his respect and appreciation for Burke despite emphatically asserting her unsuitability for the role compared to Jackson and Jeff Van Gundy. 

‘I absolutely love Doris Burke, I think she does a really good job – but she is not qualified to be the number one broadcaster on the NBA,’ Whitlock said on Fearless.

‘And I really like Doris Burke. Give me a break, Steve. Give me a break. You’re replacing an All-Star NBA player, a head coach who mattered in the league for many years. They had great chemistry, they were willing to criticize people during the game, during the broadcast. 

Jason Whitlock (L) ripped the reported promotion of Doris Burke after Mark Jackson was let go

Jason Whitlock (L) ripped the reported promotion of Doris Burke after Mark Jackson was let go

Jackson, despite being a former NBA All-Star and coach, was laid off after 15+ years with ESPN

Jackson, despite being a former NBA All-Star and coach, was laid off after 15+ years with ESPN 

Doris Burke

Doc Rivers

Doris Burke & Doc Rivers are reportedly set to be the lead co-analysts for ESPN’s NBA coverage

‘All of that is out the window. You place a woman in this spot – what Doris Burke is good, but if you think she’s woman enough to criticize these multimillionaire NBA players and coaches, it’s not gonna happen.’

The partnership of Rivers and Burke is likely to have a more NBA-positive theme, in contrast to Van Gundy who was, at times, critical of the Association and its players. In contrast, Burke is a more positive figure – and in one particular instance, far too much for Whitlock’s taste. 

‘I want to be crystal clear. Don’t anyone take me out of context, I like Doris Burke. I think she’s good, I think she’s a good change of pace,’ Whitlock said. ‘[There is] this worship of the athletes, and no one representing anything from a fan’s perspective. Everything is about to treating these entitled athletes like they’re gods. That’s what you’re gonna get from a female broadcaster. 

‘When one of those players looks over and glares, or tries to intimidate; “What’d you say? What do you know?” And again, I know she played a little basketball, but not in the NBA.’

Burke played college basketball for four seasons for Providence Friars women’s team. Meanwhile, Jackson played 17 seasons in the NBA before four seasons as the Golden State Warriors head coach – between 2011-14 – and is regularly credited for laying the foundation for the franchise’s dynasty. He was an All-Star in 1989 and won Rookie of the Year. 

‘And this is this is my problem with ESPN,’ Whitlock continued. ‘What’s their slogan? “Serving sports fans anytime, anywhere?” No decision they make has anything at all to do with serving sports fans. This isn’t about serving sports fans. This is about serving diversity, equity and inclusion, ESG score. This is about a political agenda. This has nothing to do with what’s best for the NBA or NBA fans – and I like Doris Burke.’

ESPN has ostensibly embraced diversity practices perhaps more than any other sports network in America, further evidenced in the all-female broadcast put to air last week, as well as previous all-female NBA coverage. 

Groupthink would suggest DEI the aforementioned initiatives and Burke’s reported, inevitable elevation as successes. Yet, Whitlock suggests Jackson’s release epitomizes how black men – and men, more broadly – are being affected.

Jackson and Van Gundy (R) were a widely respected & enjoyed part of ESPN's broadcast team

Jackson and Van Gundy (R) were a widely respected & enjoyed part of ESPN’s broadcast team

‘This whole Doris Burke thing and what ESPN is doing, it tells you everything about what the true agenda is for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. It has nothing to do with black men. 

‘Hello, manosphere, black men, this has nothing to do with you! Quit being a cuck, quit being a simp and wake up. They’re pleasuring white women and the LGBTQ with jobs that were meant for you… This is about the matriarchy and displacing men from positions they earned.’

Whitlock is a celebrated, and indeed polarizing, journalist who began his rise to prominence at the Kansas City Star before working at ESPN and Fox Sports – where he created and hosted Speak for Yourself – among others, before eventually moving to The Blaze.

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