MSNBC sees an opportunity. From the Times:

Building on the momentum of its prime-time hours, MSNBC is developing a 10 p.m. program that would complement its left-leaning evening lineup, the cable news channel’s president said this week.

A new program could increase the competition between MSNBC, a unit of NBC Universal, and its two chief competitors, Fox News Channel and CNN, for news viewers in the time slot. Unlike most major networks, MSNBC’s original programming ends at 10 each weeknight. The 8 p.m. program “Countdown With Keith Olbermann” is rerun at 10 p.m., where it usually ranks third.

But Phil Griffin, the president of MSNBC, is making 10 p.m. a priority now. In an interview on Tuesday in a studio on the Mall, hours after the inauguration of President Obama, Mr. Griffin said that the channel needed a third original show in its lineup.

“We can’t let this momentum stop,” he said.

There is no obvious candidate to host the 10 p.m. hour; the network seems to lack a substantial bench of opinionated hosts-in-waiting.

I don’t see who they put in that slot.

Later on in the article, Griffin says that he doesn’t want to create a splash with a celebrity signing, wishing instead for the process to be “organic.” Whoever this is will need to impress while filling in on Countdown or Maddow, but out of those analysts left at the network, can you really see anyone developing that necessary charisma?

Of course, just putting something original on the air will help MSNBC compete, but Griffin knows he has a huge opportunity to solidify the network’s brand by hiring for this slot.

I suppose we’ll all have to wait and see.

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