HBO picked up deposed CNN morning host Soledad O’Brien for its monthly show “Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel.” Sports? Soledad? As AP reported, “O'Brien played college rugby, but her experience covering sports is limited.”
Apparently, HBO can’t find enough arrogant liberalism, from Gumbel to Bill Maher. In a statement posted at TVNewser, HBO Sports president Ken Hershman said O’Brien was a “perfect fit” for Gumbel’s show, where "thought-provoking stories" is usually code language for liberal tilt:
“Soledad is a perfect fit for ‘Real Sports,’” said HBO Sports president Ken Hershman in a statement. “She’s an extraordinary interviewer and storyteller, and we’re thrilled to be able to add her to a franchise where the emphasis is on finding and presenting thought-provoking stories in the diverse and ever-fascinating world of sports.”
“Soledad’s a respected journalist with a proven track record,” says Bryant Gumbel, host of Real Sports. “Her credibility, broad interests and passion make her a wonderful addition to our program. I’m thrilled to have her on our Real Sports team.”
O’Brien says of the new partnership: “HBO is undeniably a leader in meaningful storytelling in a wide array of formats. I’m honored to join the Real Sports team and look forward to continuing my fervor for uncovering unique and impactful stories.”
HBO also signed a “first look” deal with O’Brien’s production company Starfish Media Group, giving it the first crack at scripted projects and “long form programming concepts.” The deal with HBO is still inside the Turner Broadcasting family, as HBO and CNN are sister networks owned by Time Warner.