Sports broadcasting legend Bob Costas is reportedly about to exit his longtime home, NBC, after telling the New York Post that he might no longer be what the Peacock Network needs.
“Sometimes you get to a point where it is not a fit anymore,” Costas, 66, told Post reporter Andrew Marchand when asked about whether or not he is in discussions to end his relationship with his longtime network.
Costas – who also works for MLB Network – has three years remaining on his contract with NBC, according to the Post, which cited “sources” that claim he is looking to move on. Marchand wrote that Costas initially declined to confirm or deny the claim, but eventually offered: “It doesn’t mean that anyone is angry or upset.”
Costas has been largely absent from NBC in recent memory after being the face of the network for nearly four decades. Industry watchdogs have predicted that Costa’s exit from NBC would come sooner than later after his roles on several prominent events were reduced.
“Sometimes you get to a point where it is not a fit anymore... it doesn’t mean that anyone is angry or upset."
He was removed from the network’s Super Bowl LII pre-show after making comments linking to concussions to football – but Costas said the decision was actually made because of his lack of enthusiasm for the sport.
"The decision was mutually agreeable, and not only do I not have a problem with it, I am actually happy about it. I have long had ambivalent feelings about football, so at this point, it’s better to leave the hosting to those who are more enthusiastic about it," Costas said in an email to Sports Business Daily.
Costas also stepped down from his role as prime-time host of NBC's Olympics coverage and was replaced by Mike Tirico in South Korea. Costas had been the on-air curator to NBC's Olympics 11 times, starting in 1992. He also served as the late-night host in Seoul in 1988.
“Costas wants to pursue a journalism show that would feature interviews, commentaries and a critical look at the world of sports and perhaps other topics,” Marchand wrote. “As it stands now, NBC is paying Costas seven figures per year in a ‘Tom Brokaw-like’ emeritus role to pitch in when needed.”
Costas has been used infrequently since backing away from football and the Olympics. He remains a dedicated baseball enthusiast, but NBC does not air MLB games under the current distribution deal. The Post noted that Costas will continue his work at MLB Network regardless of what happens with NBC.
‘Costas’ agent, Sandy Montag, and NBC executives already have exchanged ideas and have meetings planned in the near future for what could lead to a potential buyout,” Marchand wrote.
Costas declined to tell Marchand where he would land if a buyout is reached, but the Post reporter speculated that HBO, Showtime, Netflix, and Amazon could be options.
“It is gratifying that there are a number of places that are anxious to do the sort of thing that I was seldom able to do over the last several years at NBC,” Costas told the Post, adding that he would like to provide “thoughtful discussions, reasonable commentaries and essays.”
“It is gratifying that there are a number of places that are anxious to do the sort of thing that I was seldom able to do over the last several years at NBC."
Costas has been with NBC since 1979 and had hosted the network’s coverage of essentially every major sporting event in America.
NBC Sports did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Fox News’ Morgan Evans contributed to this report.