Magic Johnson and Michael Wilbon to reunite for NBA Countdown on Saturdays
The duo will join Sage Steele and start on Christmas Day
Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Famer and sports icon Magic Johnson and Pardon The Interruption co-host Michael Wilbon will rejoin NBA Countdown as studio analysts this season, first appearing as part of ABC’s NBA Christmas coverage. From there, Johnson will join NBA Countdown pregame coverage for the NBA Saturday Primetime on ABC series – the NBA’s marquee game of the week — starting Jan. 21, 2017.
Johnson will reunite with Wilbon, who is also making his return to NBA Countdown as an analyst this season on Saturday nights. They will join Sage Steele, who is returning for her fourth season as NBA Countdown host, to form the new Saturday trio. Saturday editions of NBA Countdown begin at 8 p.m. EST and are 30 minutes long, before the 8:30 p.m. game broadcast.
“I’m so excited to be working with my ESPN family again on NBA Countdown Saturday nights. Michael, Sage and I are going to have a lot of fun this season while we cover the greatest sport in the world,” Johnson said. “Basketball has been so good to me, and I can’t wait to once again share my love and passion for the game with the fans and my ESPN colleagues.”
Johnson previously served as an NBA studio analyst from 2008 to 2013. He worked alongside Wilbon on NBA Countdown from 2011 to 2013. Wilbon, one of ESPN’s most visible commentators, will continue his regular role as co-host of Pardon The Interruption, among several other responsibilities.
“In addition to being one of the most famous sports figures ever, Magic brings undeniable charisma and virtually unparalleled credibility to NBA Countdown,” said Kevin Wildes, ESPN’s vice president of original content. “We’re glad to welcome Magic back to ESPN and to reunite him with Michael Wilbon, who is one of the most popular and authoritative sports commentators in the business. They have an established chemistry from years of working together, and with host Sage Steele leading the charge and setting the tone, this trio will be a delight for NBA fans.”
Steele will serve as the host for NBA Countdown shows on Saturdays and Sundays this season. The complete team for NBA Countdown episodes connected to the ABC NBA Sunday Showcase series will be announced soon.
Johnson, considered to be one of the greatest NBA players, is a five-time NBA champion, three-time NBA Finals MVP and 12-time NBA All-Star, among a multitude of other accomplishments during his career at the helm of the “Showtime” Los Angeles Lakers.