In what may be her attempt to turn the page and stay relevant during what could be the downfall of her career, the liberal MSNBC presenter Rachel Maddow has recently praised the current state of the cable news industry, particularly focusing on Fox News’ “Tucker Carlson Tonight” show. Although Maddow and Carlson have opposing political ideologies, she gave a positive response of his rise to rating domination.

The comment was made in response to an interviewer’s claim that Maddow’s time slot on MSNBC obviously needed a successor since she had just stepped down from her primetime hosting duties. “Like, Tucker’s doing great right now, but look at Tucker’s career,” Maddow said in an interview. “The first show I worked on was his 11 o’clock show on MSNBC that nobody remembers. But he was always kicking around the business and has always been talented. It just — this turned out to be his moment.”

Maddow has shifted to a once-per-week program in the 9 p.m. weeknight primetime (ET) slot since she wants to turn her attention to other projects. This is the first interview since the change. Alex Wagner, an experienced anchor, and correspondent was recently chosen by MSNBC to host the other four evenings of the week. Ratings for the network have substantially declined on evenings when Maddow isn’t working as the anchor.

When asked why Carlson’s and other right-wing shows’ popularity despite their different political views, Maddow compared her position to that of a sports competitor studying the techniques of a rival. “If you think about baseball players, who are extremely competitive and who are fighting to win and who have rivalries, and some of those rivalries are bitter rivalries, that doesn’t mean you don’t study the pitching technique of their star pitcher,” Maddow said.  “It doesn’t mean you don’t appreciate whatever they’re doing in terms of, you know, where they put their shortstop in order to give them a better defense. “There’s a sort of, like, respecting the game, in terms of people who are doing well and people who are good at it,” Maddow explained.

Rachel Maddow, 49, had one of her first significant breakthroughs in the television news industry as a panelist on Carlson’s former MSNBC program “Tucker” from 2005 to 2008. She has recently run into Carlson during an event and commented that it “was really nice to see him.”

Carlson has been praised by Maddow in recent years on more than one occasion.  When Carlson was hired as a weekend anchor for “Fox and Friends” in 2013, Maddow wished him well. “Tucker and I agree on just about nothing, but he has always been kind to me and a fun person to fight with. I wish him all the best,” Maddow said. As the leading show in the 8 p.m. primetime slot, “Tucker Carlson Tonight” has repeatedly outraged critics with its aggressive viewpoints and broadcasting approach. Carlson held shows on CNN and MSNBC before joining Fox News.