Doris Burke to make history by calling conference finals, NBA Finals on radio

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Doris Burke will reach another milestone later this month when she calls the conference and NBA Finals for ESPN Radio, becoming the first woman to serve as a game analyst on a network television or radio broadcast this deep into the postseason.

“Doris is a trailblazer who continues to reimagine what is possible for women in broadcasting and we know she’ll thrive in this history-making radio analyst role,” said Stephanie Druley, ESPN’s executive vice president of event and studio production.

Burke has been part of ESPN’s coverage since the network resumed televising the NBA in 2003. She became the first woman to serve as a full-time network NBA game analyst in 2017. She has also been part of the crew doing the finals since 2009 as a sideline reporter.

Burke will join Marc Kestecher and fellow analyst Jon Barry when the conference finals begin.

With Burke heading to radio, Rachel Nichols will become the sideline reporter for the NBA Finals as well as continuing to host “The Jump” from the NBA bubble in Florida. Nichols will also host the trophy presentation at the end of the finals.

The plan going into the season was for “The Jump” to also serve as the pregame show during the finals, but those plans have been changed due to the coronavirus pandemic. “NBA Countdown” will be the pregame and halftime show, with Maria Taylor hosting from ESPN’s studio in New York. She will be joined by Stephen A. Smith, Jalen Rose, Jay Williams, Adrian Wojnarowski and Paul Pierce.

“We’re so proud of our deep, diverse roster of women leading our NBA Playoffs coverage and we’re grateful to them for their leadership and exemplary work,” Druley said.