*They might be ‘just goshing’ in the photo above, but the real deal almost happened at the House of Blues in Orlando last Friday night, when Hugh Douglas got drunk and threatened to beat the crap out of his ESPN2 colleague, Michael Smith.
According to a source who witnessed the altercation and shared details with The Big Lead, Douglas – who appears on “Numbers Never Lie” on ESPN with Michael Smith and Jemele Hill – was trying to get on stage where the DJ was playing, and threatened to beat up Smith if he couldn’t help out. After the third threat, Smith tried to walk away. That was when Douglas grabbed his wrist and called him an “Uncle Tom” and a “House N—-.”
The witness said Smith then turned around to protect himself, at which point onlookers rushed in to break it up.
Three independent sources have verified this version of events.
Someone from ESPN then pulled Douglas aside and the two briefly spoke before Douglas left the party.
Network sources say Douglas has been yanked off “Numbers Never Lie” while ESPN attempts to sort out the details from the night. Generally, some type of social media comments would’ve surfaced by now, but Douglas hasn’t tweeted since the incident and couldn’t be reached for comment.
Smith, who hosted the show Monday, didn’t respond to a request for comment.
The event was hosted by the National Association of Black Journalists, and the party was to raise money for college scholarships. An NABJ official who refused to be quoted by name told The Big Lead, “we’re confident that ESPN will handle the situation in an appropriate manner.