Former ESPN President John Skipper Reveals Cocaine Extortion Plot Forced him to Resign From Network

REUTERS/MICHELLE MCLOUGHLIN

Former ESPN President John Skipper said his abrupt departure from the sports giant was related to substance abuse, saying that he had bought cocaine from someone who “attempted to extort” him. In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Skipper said he had been an “infrequent” user of cocaine and bought the drug from a “strange source” in December. “They threatened me, and I understood immediately that threat put me and my family at risk, and this exposure would put my professional life at risk as well,” he said. “I foreclosed that possibility by disclosing the details to my family, and then when I discussed it with [CEO of Disney] Bob [Iger], he and I agreed that I had placed the company in an untenable position and as a result, I should resign.” Skipper stated that he’d been “a master of compartmentalization” about keeping his drug habit away from his professional and personal life, saying that “in order to compartmentalize you have to deceive yourself and deceive other people.” In buying the drug in December, he “wasn’t careful,” which led him to realize that he had a problem and needed to seek treatment. He also said that he’s “ready to plunge back in” to the world of sports media, in the form of “helping a few smart people; people I like and respect and who do things that matter.”

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SOURCE: The Daily Beast