Brian Williams — “the real-life Ron Burgundy” — announced he’s leaving MSNBC when his contract is up at the end of the year:

Good riddance:

But CNN’s Brian Stelter had a different reaction. He wrote in his  Reliable Sources newsleter last night that MSNBC “has a talent problem on its hands” and it will be hard-pressed to fill Williams’ shoes:

MSNBC has a talent problem on its hands.

Brian Williams told network management on Tuesday that he is passing on their offer of a new contract. He is ending a 28-year relationship with NBC and becoming a free agent at the end of the year.

So MSNBC has a big opening at 11pm ET, but that’s not all. The channel also has a looming challenge at 9pm since Rachel Maddow is ending her daily show early next year and shifting into more of a weekly format. Other hosts have also exited in recent months: Kasie Hunt departed for CNN over the summer and Geoff Bennett, the White House correspondent who had been filling in at 2pm, signed off at the end of October. And “Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski have also been holding conversations about what’s next for them,” Insider’s Claire Atkinson noted. TVNewser’s A.J. Katz summed it up simply: “MSNBC has a lot to deal with in 2022.”

Well, do you know who else has a “talent problem on its hands”? That’s right — it’s CNN.

Here are the latest ratings:

CNN, heal thyself first.


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