NEW YORK – Don Imus is about to get paid.
The disowned shock jock is close to a settlement that would have former employer CBS buy out his contract as a way to avoid costly and ugly litigation, according to multiple sources close to the situation.
These sources said the two sides have agreed in principle to a buyout and are currently exploring the price tag for such a deal — Imus had $40 million left on his contract when he was booted from CBS, but his lawsuit against the company seeks $120 million in damages.
Despite the racist comments about the Rutgers University women's basketball team that prompted Imus' removal from the airwaves, sources said the settlement speaks to the strength of the radio raconteur's case against CBS.
"I'd rather be Imus in that lawsuit than CBS," said one radio executive.
But while the negotiations over a settlement are all but finalized, these sources said CBS is dragging its feet on making the deal official until it can sign Boomer Esiason to a contract to take over Imus' old morning slot on WFAN.