After laying off a number of high-profile basketball writers in May, ESPN cleared enough cap space to sign their own prized free agent.
On July 1, NBA Scooper Adrian Wojnarowski, also known as Woj, moved on from Yahoo! and joined the Worldwide Leader in Sports, bringing over several reporters from his platform, “The Vertical.”
It’s clear ESPN was tired of having to add, “First reported by the Vertical”, to breaking NBA news that scrolls across the bottom of their ticker.
The details of Woj’s contract haven’t been reported but ESPN definitely had to cut a fat check to sign him. But Woj’s protege Shams Charania has beaten him to several stories during free agency and Twitter is having a field day.
The Woj slander has been all over social media
Woj with Yahoo vs Woj with ESPN pic.twitter.com/ButAYJEZL5
— NBA Buckets (@NBA_Buckets) July 6, 2017
Woj moved to ESPN and got soft https://t.co/2NhxdWZRHd
— Black Marlins Man (lol) (@ampaveli) July 3, 2017
Instead of Woj bombs, can we call these…Sham-wows? https://t.co/Jt5T4eCCO1
— Benjamin Allbright (@AllbrightNFL) July 3, 2017
Since joining ESPN, Woj has been featured on all over the network’s most prominent shows. He clearly hasn’t been through ESPN’s Talking Head Media Training yet.
Here’s Woj video bombing a live broadcast
— Kevin Stewart (@KevinPStewart) July 5, 2017
He strictly sticks to the facts and doesn’t look completely comfortable when he is asked for his opinion.
Last night, Woj said that the Milwaukee Bucks and New Orleans Pelicans are on the clock with their respective superstars, Giannis Antetokounmpo and Anthony Davis. Both are signed through 2021 so the comment seemed a little premature.
During a live broadcast, Woj broke the (fake) news
The 'clock has started' on Giannis Antetokounmpo's potential exit from the Bucks. (via Woj)
— NBA SKITS (@NBA_Skits) July 6, 2017
Granted the landscape of the league is changing and stars are flocking to big markets where they can play with others stars but a lot can happen in four years. The Greek Freak might become the next LeBron and drag the Bucks to the Finals in 2019.
Antetokounmpo has developed a strong relationship with his coach Jason Kidd and the Bucks’ front office. Though GM John Hammond recently signed on to lead the Orlando Magic, Antetokounmpo doesn’t seem like the type who is looking for greener pastures.
He posted this on Twitter last night:
It’s possible he’s taking shots at just about every superstar who has left their team. Antetokounmpo got the best of the NBA’s Twitter King this time.