ESPN shocked many in the sports world when it announced that it was hiring away Fox broadcasters Joe Buck and Troy Aikman to make up their Monday Night Football booth for next season.
The duo’s contract details were officially announced by ESPN on Wednesday, with both coming to the company on five-year deals. Next NFL season will mark the 21st year that the duo has been together in the booth, matching the legendary duo of John Madden and Pat Summerall’s tenure together.
There were plenty of reactions from around the NFL world about the news, and that includes one of the people they are replacing in ESPN’s MNF booth, Steve Levy. Levy was a member of ESPN’s three-man team in 2021, which consisted of him, Brian Griese, and Louis Riddick.
Levy posted the following message on social media, reacting to Buck’s official signing with the Worldwide Leader, congratulating him and letting him know that he will be a part of a great team over at ESPN.
— Steve Levy (@espnSteveLevy) March 16, 2022
In regards to the image of Joe Buck with the phrase “Lucky Bastard” above his head, Levy wrote “Yeah, you are [Joe] – that you get to work with an amazing MNF crew. Look forward to seeing you in the cafeteria in Bristol. You’re buying…”
Buck and Aikman’s pairing at the network will ultimately replace Levy’s role on Monday Night Football for the most part, but it is expected that Levy and Riddick will work MNF double-header games that Aikman and Buck won’t be calling, according to New York Post’s Andrew Marchand.
Steve Levy and Louis Riddick are likely to call the extra games on ESPN's schedule that Joe Buck and Troy Aikman don't call, according to sources.
ESPN will have a total 22 games next year. Buck and Aikman figure to do at least 18.
— Andrew Marchand (@AndrewMarchand) March 16, 2022
Some may not be happy that Levy will no longer be the lead announcer on MNF anymore, but Aikman and Buck represent a huge get in terms of name-value that ESPN truly expects to pay dividends down the road.