ESPN viewers recently noticed that Stephen A. Smith has not been on TV and his Twitter account has been quiet. The good news is viewers got an answer about Smith's whereabouts recently as the First Take host went to Twitter recently to announce that he had surgery on his shoulder due to multiple injuries. He also announced that he will return to ESPN in August.
"Appreciate the love I've been receiving from everyone who's missed me on [First Take]. Smith wrote. "I'm out because I'm rehabbing from shoulder surgery. Partial tear — rotator cuff AND Bicep, along with frayed Labrum, plus a Bone Spur. Aging sucks, but it is what it is. Back next month."
Many fans went to Twitter to show support for Smith. One fan wrote: "Get well soon! You my favorite except when you b hatin on DEM BOYS! You might despise us fans, but secretly I think you love DEM BOYS! Peace out brotha! GO COWBOYS!"
"Stephen A I torn my rotator cuff in the middle of Covid chose not to get surgery and said I have taken two PRP shots in the last two years has helped immensely grateful I didn't get the surgery," another person wrote. "It has helped my shoulder get back to normal along with rehabilitating it."
Along with First Take, Smith, 54, has appeared on ESPN NBA Finals coverage and debuted his own show on ESPN+ called Stephen A's World. He's been with ESPN since 2003 and is among the network's highest-paid personalities as he reportedly brings in $12 million per year. In January, Smith talked about his near-death experience while battling COVID-19.
"I had 103-degree fever every night, woke up with chills, pool of sweat, headaches with massive coughing profusely," Smith said on the show. "It got to a point that right before New Year's Eve, I was in the hospital New Year's Eve into New Year's Day. That's how I brought in the new year."
Smith continued: "They told me had I not been vaccinated, I wouldn't be here. That's how bad I was," Smith said. "I had pneumonia in both lungs. My liver was bad. It had ravaged me to the point where even now I have to monitor my volume, get to the gym every day, walk before you run. Work your way back because I'm still not 100 percent with my lungs."