Popular ESPN Personality Leaving Network After 27 Years

One of the most popular personalities on ESPN is getting ready to leave the company. On Monday Kenny Mayne, 61, announced on Twitter he is leaving ESPN due to a "salary cap casualty." He has been with ESPN since 1994 and has recently been appearing several nights each week on the 11 p.m. ET edition of SportsCenter. According to Variety, Mayne was said to have been offered a package to remain but declined.

Mayne joined ESPN in May of 1994. According to his bio on ESPN, Mayne returned to anchoring SportsCenter in June 2017 after an absence of a decade. Mayne is known for his offbeat style, dry humor and interesting sayings, such as, "thanks for having electricity" and home runs calls, "I am amused by the simplicity of this game!" Some of his most notable roles on ESPN have been on SportsCenter, the former ESPN2 motorsports show, rpm2night and hosting both seasons of the sports trivia game show 2-Minute Drill.

"My premise is, I like words a lot more than sports," Mayne told Entertainment Weekly in 1998. "I'm not as big a sports nut as maybe I'm supposed to be." From 2008-2011, Mayne produced an originally scripted called Mayne Street. He then debuted Kenny Mayne's Wider World of Sports on ESPN.com, which was inspired by ABC's Wide World of Sports. Additionally, Mayne hosted The Mayne Event segments on Sunday NFL Countdown.

Mayne originally joined ESPN as a SportsSmash anchor for ESPN2. He provided five-minute score and news reports every half-hour and as a feature reporter for SportsNight. In 1995, he was the host of ESPN2's weekend auto racing news and highlights programs, Sunday morning's rmp2day and rmp2night on Saturday and Sunday.


Before joining ESPN, Mayne served as a freelance reporter and field producer from the Network from 1990-1994. "During that time," Mayne says, "I only pursued one full-time television job. ESPN. I had the ESPN 800-number and called all the time with story ideas. I guess they finally decided it was less expensive to hire me than to keep paying for my phone calls."