Bombshell from ESPN ... longtime president John Skipper has suddenly resigned -- and says it's to focus on a secret battle with "substance addiction."
"Today I have resigned from my duties as President of ESPN," 61-year-old Skipper said in a statement.
"I have struggled for many years with a substance addiction. I have decided that the most important thing I can do right now is to take care of my problem."
"I have disclosed that decision to the company, and we mutually agreed that it was appropriate that I resign. I will always appreciate the human understanding and warmth that Bob displayed here and always.
"I come to this public disclosure with embarrassment, trepidation and a feeling of having let others I care about down.
"As I deal with this issue and what it means to me and my family, I ask for appropriate privacy and a little understanding.
"To my colleagues at ESPN, it has been a privilege. I take great pride in your accomplishments and have complete confidence in your collective ability to continue ESPN's success."
Skipper is one of -- if not THE -- most powerful man in sports. He's been running ESPN since 2012. He's been with ESPN since 1997.