Keith Olbermann is returning to ESPN, 16 years after his contentious departure. The popular newscaster has signed a two year deal to host a one-hour nightly show for ESPN2 later this year, reports the New York Times.

Olbermann, 54, gained fame co-anchoring the network's 'SportsCenter' program with Dan Patrick though left the show to help launch ESPN2 in October 1993. However, he departed the underwork under heated circumstances with many fear Olbermann became too politicized as the host of his other show, MSNBC's 'Countdown'

His return to the network doesn't come without its concerns. In fact, executives from ESPN and its parent company Walt Disney have been locked in intense discussions for 14 months, with many fearing Olbermann's exit would have made it difficult for him to return. 

It appears as though Olbermann has carte blanche on his new show and as well as sport will be free to discuss pop culture and current events, but NOT politics. 

Though the concerns are understandable, Olbermann's star quality is without question and the majority of ESPN's audience will be pleased to have him back. He's almost unmatched for his sporting knowledge and presence on-screen.

Meanwhile, over at rivals Fox Sports 1, Regis Philbin, 82, will front a potentially similar sporting programme. Crowd Goes Wild will premiere August 19 on the new cable network.

What do you think of Keith Olbermann's return to ESPN. Can it work out?

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