Stephen A. Smith Explains Why He Wanted Max Kellerman Off ‘First Take’

Stephen A. Smith

Stephen A. Smith has opened up as to why he wanted boxing expert, Max Kellerman off ESPN’s First Take show.

Smith said Kellerman is a real good guy but he says they didn’t have a great partnership anymore.

“The rumor’s accurate in terms of me wanting him off the show. Let’s get that out the way. Yes, I did,” Smith said while speaking to Ebro Darden and Peter Rosenberg on Hot 97 (via Complex). “We don’t have a bad relationship. I think he’s a real good guy. I appreciate what he did for the show. We were number one for five years, we stayed number one, and I appreciate that. It wasn’t really about asking him to be off the show, it was about the fact that I knew that we, together, as far as I was concerned, was not a great partnership anymore and that was something that needed to change.”

Although Kellerman is off First Take with Stephen A. Smith, he still will remain a part of ESPN. Max Kellerman will still remain on the boxing beat and he will continue to his weekly show, Max on Boxing.

“Kellerman will host a new ESPN television series (more details to follow), after serving on ESPN’s popular First Take program alongside Stephen A. Smith and Molly Qerim Rose since July 2016,” ESPN said in a statement at the time. “More information on the new Kellerman show and on First Take’s updated format will be announced soon. Kellerman will also continue to host his weekly boxing show, Max on Boxing on ESPN2.”  

Many fans had been pointing out that something felt off between Kellerman and Smith and shortly thereafter, the news was made that they were no longer hosting the show.

What do you make of Stephen A. Smith’s reason as to why Max Kellerman is off First Take?