Everyone agreed that the takeover of mr. Zaslav increased the chance that Mr. Zucker will remain, perhaps, in an expanded role that includes more of Discovery and Warner’s joint news and sports assets. Discovery, for example, owns Eurosport, a European network with broadcasting rights at the Olympic Games and major tournaments in tennis and golf.
“They were a formidable team when they were together at NBC,” said Jeff Gaspin, a former chairman of entertainment at NBCUniversal, who has worked closely with both men. “They will set up a formidable team at Warner if Jeff chooses to stay.”
The two men started at NBC in the late 1980s. They trained under Jack Welch, the chairman of General Electric, which controlled the media company, and ascended during NBC’s ‘Must See TV’ golden era in the 1990s.
“It was a time when we would look at each other, and we believed that anything was possible,” he said. Zaslav once said and reflected on their salad days at NBC. Mr. Zucker eventually becomes CEO; Mr. Zaslav leaves to run Discovery in 2007.