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Sports Illustrated
Sports Illustrated
Ian Casselberry

ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski Spent the Longest Night in Newark Airport to Break James Harden TradeESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski Spent the Longest Night in Newark Airport to Break James Harden Trade

The life of an NBA insider might appear to be exciting and fast-paced. However, Adrian Wojnarowski’s experience while reporting the James Harden trade might dispel that notion. 

Harden was dealt from the 76ers to the Clippers in the late hours of Monday night going into very early Tuesday morning. But Wojnarowski wasn’t at home or the office when breaking news of the trade at 2 a.m. ET. He was at the airport. 

Not wanting to miss any correspondence, the ESPN insider didn’t get on his scheduled flight to Los Angeles from Newark Airport. To make sure he had a consistent Wi-Fi connection to stay available, he stayed grounded. However, since it was so late, Wojnarowski had to work at the terminal once the airport lounge closed for the night.

He briefly explained his working situation on his podcast while going over the details of the trade. 

“It was suggested to me to not get on a plane,” Wojnarowski said, “that you might be—it’s always my worst fear with this job that you’re on a plane and the wireless is spotty and you can’t get to what you need to do—so I sat in Newark Airport, watched the place close down and then almost start to re-open again. So from like 5 p.m., they threw me out of the [United] lounge at 10:30 p.m. when it closed and then I just went and sat downstairs until I left about 3:30 in the morning.” 

That sounds less than glamorous, though it certainly speaks to the dedication reporters like Wojnarowski apply to being first on a scoop. Early in the 2023-24 NBA season, there was no bigger story than Harden being traded. At least Wojnarowski didn’t have to do a live SportsCenter hit from the airport terminal, possibly with vacuum cleaners running. 

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