Adrian Wojnarowski’s Strangle on Sport Scoops
How a sports reporter became a legend in the age of social media
By: Caleb Yum
As an avid sports fan who also writes for the sports section of the North Texas Daily, there is almost nothing that makes my heart race more than seeing that NBA Insider and Sports Reporter Adrian Wojnarowski has dropped another tweet, aka “Woj Bomb” on Twitter. Nicknamed “Woj”, Wojnarowski is an American sports columnist, reporter and author who is currently an NBA insider for ESPN. He’s known for his ability to get the scoop on latest NBA news, his work ethic and his high reputation among NBA players and his peers.
The impact of the Woj Bomb
In today’s age of social media, sports fans are always refreshing their feeds in order to make sure they don’t miss any news or rumors concerning their favorite team or players.
Wojnarowski’s series of draft-spoiling tweets.
However, across the NBA it has become near law that if there is any groundbreaking news, the first report about it will undoubtedly be a tweet from Wojnarowski. In fact, during the NBA draft, Wojnarowski has been known to tip what players teams will draft even before they are drafted. Even though technically reporters are not allowed to tip draft picks, Wojnarowski avoids this rule through minor technicalities. His legendary repuatation has gotten to the point that some don’t believe a source until Wojnarowski breaks the news.
The work ethic needed to maintain his reputation
Wojnarowski has to put in a huge amount of work and focus in order to keep up his reputation. In order to make sure he does not miss a single piece of news, Wojnarowski has to keep in contact with a countless number of sources throughout the day, which entails a ridiculous amount of writing. While his reputation has changed throughout his career, his work ethic has stayed consistent. His work for Yahoo Sports in 2006-2017 singlehandedly changed the site into a reputable source for sports information. Interviewing, coordinating schedules and writing the paper is an exhausting process, however, Wojnarowski makes it all seem like cake. It’s unfathomable how much time he puts into his craft.
You can’t mess with Woj
You don’t get to become the most reputable sports reporter in the world without having sources; and you cannot get those sources unless you develop connections and a reputation of trust among your community and peers. Wojnarowski likely has a cache of sources to pull from due to his work over the years, giving him the ability to get away with just about anything. For instance, in a highly publicized incident in July of 2020, Woj responded to a U.S. Senator’s email critiquing the NBA’s social justice initiative with just two words: “F*** you.” While Wojnarowski ended up getting suspended without pay, the amount of support he got from around the league was immense. #FreeWoj started trending on Twitter and some even said that “ESPN needs Woj more than Woj needs ESPN.” Though he did apologize in the end, it’s hilarious that Wojnarowski had the guts to call out a U.S. Senator like that. Wojnarowski’s legend as the undisputed best reporter let him stand up for what he believes in and he likely has even more respect from his peers now because of it.
Overall, Wojnarowski is a reporter who will likely go down as a legend in the world of sports media. I for one will always consider him the best sports reporter I have ever seen. The man is extremely devoted to his work and even today it’s still hard to fathom that one man has developed such a reputation for himself that a single tweet from him can blow up the entire landscape of the NBA. No matter what kind of rumors circle around the NBA, you can never be sure if it’s true until Woj confirms it.
About the Author:
Caleb Yum is currently a junior in the Mayborn School of Journalism. He is majoring in Journalism with a focus in public relations while minoring in communications. Caleb also writes for the North Texas Daily in the sports section. He enjoys watching sports, listening to music and eating food. Caleb hopes to one day do public relations for a sports team, or to work at a PR agency.
Connors, Greg. “Wojnarowski Helps Yahoo Climb to Top.” The Buffalo News, 13 Aug. 2010, web.archive.org/web/20111021034947/www.buffalonews.com/sports/columns/other-sports-columns/article101316.ece.
Panetta, Grace. “ESPN's Star NBA Reporter Apologizes for Emailing 'F--- You' to Sen. Josh Hawley.” Business Insider, Business Insider, 10 July 2020, www.businessinsider.com/espn-nba-reporter-apologizes-for-emailing-f-you-to-senator-hawley-2020-7.
Schwartz, Nick. “Twitter Reacts to Adrian Wojnarowski Finding a Loophole for the 'No Spoiling Picks' Rule.” USA Today, Gannett Satellite Information Network, 22 June 2018, ftw.usatoday.com/2018/06/twitter-reacts-to-adrian-wojnarowski-finding-a-loophole-for-the-no-spoiling-picks-rule.