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New York Times Decides to Close its Sports Department

New York Times to manage daily sports coverage, absorbs The Athletic.

The change was disclosed by The New York Times’ executive director Joe Kahn and a deputy managing editor by the name of Monica Drake. They called it “an evolution in how we cover sports.”

Times and The Athletics’ separate newsrooms will be maximized with a “greater abundance of sports coverage than ever before,” as a result of the decision to remove the long-standing Sports desk at the top American daily.

The editors sent an email to The Times’ newsroom on Monday morning stating, “We plan to focus even more directly on distinctive, high-impact news and enterprise journalism about how sports intersect with money, power, culture, politics, and society at large.”

Newsroom coverage of games, players, teams, and leagues will be reduced at the same time.

The Athletic has further integrated its newsroom with the closure of its sports desk, which was formerly a mainstay of American sports writing. In an effort to increase the scope of its sporting coverage, the magazine paid $550 million to acquire this website in January 2022.

After the move, The Athletic will be the primary source for the almost 150 daily pieces that make up the sports coverage, including news about domestic and international leagues, teams, and players. In the meantime, The New York Times print edition will debut articles from the online platform.

There are “no plans for layoffs,” according to a message released on Monday by the chairman and CEO of the New York Times, AG Sulzberger and Meredith Kopit Levien, but the “newsroom leadership will actively work with all our Sports colleagues to ensure they land in the right roles.”

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