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Teddy Atlas Confirms Removal, Will No Longer Call ESPN Fights

Longtime ESPN boxing analyst Teddy Atlas has confirmed that last weekend's removal from calling live ESPN boxing events will be permanent.

There were countless questions on social media last Saturday, regarding Atlas' absence from the ESPN televised card from The Theater in Madison Square Garden in New York City - headlined by WBO super featherweight champion Vasyl Lomachenko stopping Guillermo Rigondeaux in six rounds.

Atlas has been calling fights on ESPN for 21 years and has at least 2-3 years left on his existing contract with the network.

teddy-atlas_1

Last week's broadcasting duties were handled at ringside by newly hired analyst Mark Kriegel, network veteran Joe Tessitore and former world champion Timothy Bradley.

Atlas confirmed to the Los Angeles Times that it doesn't appear that he'll be back to calling live fights for ESPN.

"Doesn't look like it, at least from what I understand is the decision," Atlas said to the paper.

"It wasn't my decision. I can't really talk about it [more] because I'm under contract. I always try to be up-front and honest. I'm not able to speak about it. I don't mean to be vague or be to the point, because that's what I like to be and always try to be, whether people like it or not.

"It wasn't my choice. I've appreciated the 21 years I've been at ESPN and the opportunity I've been given, and I appreciate the opportunity the fans have given me. I still have three more years of a commitment to a company that's been good to me. I'm looking to fulfill my commitment and be true to that. I wish I was able to speak more on it, but I gave my word that I wouldn't."

Atlas has always been an outspoken figure on the network and some of his statements have been controversial.

Sources close to the network told the LA Times that Atlas' behavior during two of their broadcasts was the final straw and led to his removal.

Apparently, ESPN was not happy with Atlas wild eruption during Jeff Horn's disputed victory over Manny Pacquiao in July. Atlas even questioned the validity of the victory during Horn's post fight interview - which created a very awkward situation.

And then last month in Fresno, as part of the Top Rank event headlined by Jose Ramirez, Atlas engaged in an argument with Kriegel and questioned his credentials.

"They gave [Atlas] a bunch of chances," one official said to the paper. "The Fresno show was terrible. He was terrible to Kriegel and it was the straw that broke the camel's back."

Last week, Atlas was used in-studio for some of the pre and post fight features for Lomachenko-Rigondeaux.

According to ESPN executive Stephanie Druley, the network will continue to use Atlas in that type of role.

"Teddy's expertise and knowledge of boxing is unparalleled and he will continue to be a part of our boxing coverage. As we embark upon a new approach with boxing, we are also going to utilize different talent lineups. For example last week, Teddy contributed a feature on Vasiliy Lomachenko; he will continue to contribute to boxing across our platforms."

User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by Code Red on 12-17-2017

[QUOTE=GMAN SUPREME;18333179]ok you dumb flom0. what rounds do you think horn won? fight wasn't close. pac was the clear winner.[/QUOTE] 4 of the first 6 and 10-12, but most importantly Jeff Horn forced Manny to fight his fight. Pac was…

Comment by Code Red on 12-17-2017

[QUOTE=GhostofDempsey;18333293]I think there was more to this than what is on the surface. I think Teddy knew Kriegel was put in there to replace him. Teddy may sound a little punchy but he's not stupid.[/QUOTE] Well it can definitely be…

Comment by Scipio2009 on 12-14-2017

[QUOTE=GriffTannen;18335381]Idk who he works with but Paulie does fights in the U.K. Too[/QUOTE] Paulie's with Sky Sports

Comment by Scipio2009 on 12-14-2017

[QUOTE=Larry Einstein;18335227]So they let him go for speaking the truth?[/QUOTE] Bob Arum doesn't want the truth; he wants a platform to turn his prospects into stars. ESPN weighed it out, and seems to have decided to side with Top Rank;…

Comment by Pigeons on 12-14-2017

[QUOTE=Scipio2009;18335431]The color guy on Showtime is Mauro Runallo, just as the color guy on HBO is Jim Lampley. This is a three-man team we're talking about here; color guy, old fighter, trainer/journalist/historian. Color guy tells the story, the old fighter…

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