Jenkins thanked NBC Sports Washington, which declined to comment through a spokesman.
Also Monday, Sara Perlman, who co-hosted “The Daily Line,” an NBC Sports Radio show devoted to sports gambling, with Jenkins and Tim Murray, announced she was out of a job. So did Craig Calcaterra and Rob Dauster, who ran NBC Sports’ national baseball and college basketball blogs — HardballTalk and CollegeBasketballTalk — for more than a decade.
“It didn’t take me long to really connect with the people here, particularly the fans,” Jenkins, who grew up in a small town in Texas, said Monday in a phone interview. “I felt and feel a genuine connection with them. It’s hard for me to articulate how meaningful that has been for me. … That’s what makes all of this very painful.”
During his time as an anchor and reporter at NBCSW, Jenkins became known for his humorous on-air bits and his ability to connect, commiserate and celebrate with the D.C. sports fan base. He often interviewed fans outside of Capital One Arena, but after the Capitals were eliminated — again — by the Pittsburgh Penguins in the second round of the 2016 Stanley Cup playoffs, Jenkins went viral for pretending to drown his sorrows while anchoring a show from the studio.
“Did you guys hear about the Caps?” he asked at the top of the show that night. “Do you like to drink? I like to drink. I’m going to drink the whole show.”
(Jenkins, who reprised the bit when Washington won the Stanley Cup in 2018, admitted on the “Dan Patrick Show” a few days later that he was actually guzzling iced tea.)
“Having the Caps sort of bring everything full circle and win it all was sort of that ultimate experience,” Jenkins said Monday. “You have all this heartbreak for so many D.C. sports fans, and after I’ve kind of had this viral moment where people can empathize as to how painful it is, then to have this release where the Caps won it all, it was just nirvana. It kind of felt like we were all in it together — this whole city, this whole area. For everyone to experience that as one was something I’ll always look back on and remember.”
Jenkins began co-hosting “The Daily Line,” an NBC Sports Radio production broadcast out of NBC Sports Washington’s Bethesda studio, in January 2019. When the show debuted a live video simulcast, Perlman, who previously worked as the on-field reporter for Baltimore Orioles broadcasts on MASN, joined the show as a third co-host. “The Daily Line” went off the air March 31, and Perlman indicated Monday that she was informed it will not return.
“Thank you for following my journey and watching along on NBC,” Perlman tweeted. “I’m so excited to see what is next.”
Perlman declined to comment.
Murray, who had been working the news desk at NBC Sports Washington for a few months when he was given the opportunity to audition for a hosting role on “The Daily Line,” said he and Jenkins hit it off right away.
“We did like four segments for a demo and it was just one of those things when you just knew,” Murray, who no longer works for NBCSW, said in a phone interview. “I know it’s going to sound cliche, but what people see on TV is what he’s like behind the scenes. He’s a genuinely good, funny guy, easy to work with. We had an incredible time working together. I really don’t know if we ever had a disagreement off the air.”
Murray said Perlman was a welcome addition to the show.
“She had an incredible personality, remarkable energy, and that’s what she brought Day One,” Murray said. “Everyone just got along so well. There was a banter between all of us. … I loved working with those guys and I hope to work with them again and everyone behind the scenes, too.”
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