Playbook Inc. has hired longtime ESPN talent executive Gerry Matalon as EVP Talent Development. He will oversee the development, media training and coaching for the agency, working closely with Kristin LaFemina, EVP Client Services.
Before leaving ESPN last year, Matalon served as the network’s Senior Coordinating Producer of Talent Planning & Development, working closely with athletes, coaches and on-air talent, including Scott Van Pelt, Suzy Kolber, Tim Tebow, Bob Knight, Herm Edwards, Lou Holtz and the late Stuart Scott. Since leaving ESPN, Matalon also has provided performance training for the NFL, NBA Players Association college football’s Senior Bowl, the National Hot Rod Association and more.
“Adding Gerry allows our company to expand the range of our best-in-class services,” Playbook founder and CEO Reed Bergman said in today’s announcement.
Playbook touted its emphasis on transitioning on-field talent to positions as sports analysts, commentators and spokespeople. The company cited Jesse Palmer expanding his ESPN college football duties to include ABC’s Good Morning America, Dan Patrick’s work with Sports Jeopardy and Baltimore Ravens star Steve Smith’s presence with CBS and SiriusXM as he recovered from season-ending ACL surgery in 2015.