Inside The NBA casualty of NBA's new $7 billion media rights deal

It's a sad day for NBA fans as it's now been confirmed that Inside The NBA will be ending its glorious run due to the NBA's new $7 billion media rights deal that doesn't include TNT. The NBA had already re-upped with Disney (ESPN/ABC) and added Amazon to the mix, but they were still searching for one more network. NBC has won that final spot.
NBA fans will have one final year to enjoy Ernie, Chuck, Kenny, and Shaq, as the current media rights deal runs through the 2024-25 NBA season. InsideThe NBA has been must watch late night TV since the outspoken Charles Barkley joined the show following his retirement. Barkley and Kenny Smith made a perfect pairing with their friendly ribbing back and forth and Ernie Johnson played the straight role.

The show was pretty much perfect and the threesome never left. After Shaquille O'Neal joined the crew following his own retirement, while not nearly as funny as Barkley and more thin skinned, he still fit in great with the crew. And if you thought having three big personalities to balance would be too much for Ernie, you thought wrong. Johnson has continued to steer the show and adds his own humor in there too.

Johnson who is a long time Atlanta native and Turner employee, does other work for TNT and has expressed zero interest in moving the show to a new network and city, so don't expect Inside The NBA to transition to NBC or Amazon or something. I could see the foursome turning the show into a podcast in the future, since they are all the rage right now. They wouldn't have to commit to two times a week, nor would they even necessarily have to be in the same city.

I feel like this is the end of the last great late night talk show. Sure it was basketball based, but since it's inception, TV and late night has changed a ton. There are no more hilarious late night hosts like Letterman, Conan, or Ferguson. Ernie, Chuck, Kenny, and Shaq were the greatest late night show left standing. A show that didn't change due to the times, partly because everyone knew that the huge personalities of Barkley and O'Neal would never allow it. Its humor is as strong in 2024 as it was in the 1990's.

Time to enjoy this final year and fingers crossed for a future podcast.