The NBA is a business, and a cut-throat one at that. Today, you could be the franchise player for a small-market team. Tomorrow, you could end up as trade fodder. Change is ever constant in the league. The players, coaches, and their families are well aware of this. At any moment, they could be moved or, worse, fired. In recent years, one scribe has been hailed as the ultimate news breaker. His name? Adrian Wojnarowski. He is the go-to guy on NBA transactions. Once he reports it, you can bet it’s happening. In other words, he is the Perez Hilton of the NBA.
In effect, NBAers monitor his Twitter posts. Often, as Steven Adams argued, they learn of their coach’s firing through the platform. When Chris Bosh came to Miami, Woj was among the first to break the signing. Due to their sudden appearances, these shockers are known as ‘Woj Bombs’. Moreover, the immense impact of these reports likewise merit this tag. Sometimes, the latter concerns changes that shake up the entire association. Nothing can escape his bombs: superstar moves, starter shifts, role player re-assignments, and free agent signings. His revelations are like the league’s best marksmen: it’s always money. You can’t take his scoops with a grain of salt. Once it’s from Woj, you know it’s for real.
Woj: a history
Woj is of Polish background. He plied his trade at St. Bonaventure, where he was awarded an honorary doctorate years later. He worked with the Hartford Courant, Connecticut’s number one daily while still in high school. He was also a columnist for the Fresno Bee. He has since relocated to New Jersey and New York. He reported for The Record in the former. He then joined Yahoo Sports in 2007. There, he became arguably the league’s best scooper. He offered unparalleled hits that shaped the league’s crew. The road to being one of the most credible league reporters wasn’t built overnight.
Woj became a household name after the 2011 NBA draft. There, he reported half of the lottery selections before even the late commissioner. Woj alleged that he was tired of ESPN’s stranglehold of scoops. This could very well be when the term was coined. After season upon season of astonishing revelations, Woj was in a league of his own. When ESPN signed him in 2017, it came as no surprise. In the past ten years, he had merely done wonders with his coverage.
How did he became the NBA’s best scooper? Well, it wasn’t by accident. Workmate JJ Adande rode with Woj in an elevator. The former saw Woj typing on his laptop in the lift. When he checked his mobile, he swears there was a new Tweet coming from Woj. That, ladies and gents, is Dedication. Furthermore, Woj has cultivated relationships with literally everyone in the business. Simply put, there is no one in the L that he hasn’t met. While with Yahoo, Woj and a colleague broke the story of the Connecticut Huskies’s recruiting violations. Through time, numerous awards have affirmed Woj’s excellence. For instance, he was the Associated Press’s two time ‘columnist of the year’ while working for The Record. In 2006, he also wrote a well-received book on coach Bob Hurley.
Woj is especially active during the NBA’s annual draft. Every year, Woj would surprise us with draft selections and trades often before they are called. In this sense, he is like the COVID prophet during last year’s NSW lockdown. The latter was calling it in before the Premier’s announcements. People were shocked at his accuracy. His inside information on the case numbers were later revealed. After some time, with tighter security around the numbers, he began misfiring. He lost the public’s confidence.
Here are some famous, recent examples (out of my myriads) from his bomb work. He was the first reporter to announce the league’s suspension of the 2019-20 season due to the pandemic. Paul George wanted out of OKC and forced their hand to trade him. LeBron’s move to LA for $154 million was another. One more example: the Lakers’s trade for Anthony Davis to finally get some help.
While Woj is often on target, he’s had a few miscues over the years. He reported a trade between the Thunder and Raptors. This would allegedly involve DeMar Derozan and Victor Oladipo. Alas, the swap never materialised. He likewise reported that Kyrie would leave Brooklyn by June 2019. To this day, Kyrie remains a Net, signing a 4-year, $141 million extension. In addition, some media outlets have criticised Woj for his apparent biased reporting on LeBron, riding on unspecified sources. In 2010, he had some legal issues for not making good on a book deal. This concerned the late coach Jim Valvano. He stated that this was a misunderstanding and that he’d return the advance to his publisher.
So, if you’re feeling peckish during draft night or tossing and turning in bed before the trade deadline, ‘sigh no more’. Head over to Woj’s Twitter feed and have your fill.