On Monday, Serena Williams squared off against fellow American Sloane Stephens in Round 4 of the French Open and Stephens set off the upset alert by taking the first set 6–1.
ESPN decided the No. 1 seed being upset was worth showing and so the network preempted its regular programming, the scholarly debate show First Take, to show Stephens and Williams battle at Roland Garros.
This drew the ire of the show's fans, who would have preferred to see the spirited verbal volleys of Stephen A. Smith and Skip Bayless instead of actual high level sports.
SOMEONE tell me why WOMENS TENNIS is ON ESPN2 instead of FIRST TAKE 😡😡😡😡— 🇺🇸 (@_AT3_) June 1, 2015
Why are they airing a tennis game when it's supposed to be First Take— thomas (@tomms_canlas) June 1, 2015
Was excited for First Take but tennis is on 😩— Bookie (@JLingard_12) June 1, 2015
- Brendan Maloy