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ESPN’s biggest star has been regulated to the virtual bench thanks to COVID-19.

Stephen A. Smith announced on his hit sport’s debate show First Take Tuesday (Dec.21) that he has tested positive for COVID-19. Smith revealed he learned of his positive diagnosis over the weekend.

Smith, 54, revealed on First Take he started experiencing mild symptoms when he returned from a trip to Los Angeles, detailing he was running a fever on Thursday evening (Dec.16). Smith was absent from Monday’s show because of his positive diagnosis explaining that his absence from Thursday and Friday’s taping was due to an endoscopy procedure and not COVID-19.

In a more subdued raspier voice, Smith said:

“I’ve tested positive for COVID-19, I have the coronavirus. I learned this over the weekend. I got tested three times last week prior to the weekend and I had tested negative. I tested negative before I departed from L.A., I tested negative when I arrived in L.A., I tested negative when I got back from L.A.”

“Thank god I was vaccinated,” Smith said. “Thank God I got the Pfizer vaccine, two shots a few months ago,” he further added before revealing he has yet to receive a booster shot but does plan on taking one when he can.

But, despite the bad news, the show went on with Smith going into a rant about the Brooklyn Nets bringing back still unvaccinated and now COVID-19 positive All-Star point guard Kyrie Irving, saying the organization is making a “huge mistake.”

It’s good to see that screaming Stephen is still able to do his job while recovering, clear proof that the vaccines do indeed work.

Photo: Stacy Revere / Getty