Fred Hickman, a sports broadcaster who was a staple on the air for more than four decades, died Wednesday at 66.
Hickman was perhaps best known for co-anchoring “Sports Tonight” with Nick Charles on CNN, beginning that stint in 1980.
He was also the first person to appear on air on the Yankee Entertainment and Sports Network (YES) when that station started on March 19, 2002.
“Fred was a joy to work with and a joyful person,” New York Yankees announcer Michael Kay said in a statement. “A total pro that you felt comfortable with knowing he would lead you the right way on the air. He was the first voice ever heard on YES and his professionalism put us on the right track, a track we are on all these years later.”
During his time with TBS, Hickman hosted the first version of “Inside the NBA.”
Hickman drew the ire of former Los Angeles Lakers star Shaquille O’Neal in 2000, when Hickman was the only media member not to cast an MVP vote for O’Neal, preventing him from being a unanimous selection. Hickman voted for Philadelphia 76ers guard Allen Iverson.
Hickman also worked for ESPN and Fox Sports South, and he recently was an anchor and managing editor at Black News Channel.
Story Credit: usatoday.com