If you know me, you know I had a lot beefs over the years. Some made sense, some didn't. I'm a tough character. I take pride in being right, sometimes I don't back down from a side and instead dig my heels in. As Billy Joel once said about the Angry Young Man "He's proud of his scars and the battles he's lost and he struggles and bleeds as he hangs on the cross." Listen people change, carrying around a ton of weight and beefs gets to be heavy sometimes. It's nice to start dropping a few of them, makes things easier.
One of my longest and earliest beefs was with one of The NBA's biggest reporters Adrian Wojnarowski. Let me lay it out to you all.
In 2011, Wagner College from my home town of Staten Island was led by a rising star coach Danny Hurley. Son of legendary HS Coach Bob Hurley and brother to Duke standout and NBA draft pick Bobby Hurley. Coaching circles on Twitter were abuzz with schools Danny Hurley could rise to. Everyone was putting him on short lists for bigger jobs. I wasn't involved in the media role I am now, nor was I the college basketball power broker I am today. Although, I still loved the sport of college basketball and was following anyone and everyone in the mix of reports, articles (remember those) and rumors.
On 12/23/11, Wagner went into The Oakland Zoo, home of Pittsburgh who was nationally ranked at the time and beat the Panthers 59-54. I know ... crazy right?
The entire Island was abuzz. Meatballs were half off at every Salumeria and people were dancing to house music in the streets. Christmas lights were synched up to start matching the beat. Velour sweatsuits were being worn with pride. Finally little Staten Island was on the map for basketball and took down a powerhouse. Christmas parties were flowing with the finest wines. The Island was going nuts and celebrating.
Social media was also abuzz. Everyone was quoting Hurley post game quotes, everyone was talking about how big a win this was for little old Wagner and how great a coach Hurley was. I was desperate to get in the mix of these big time reporters and was replying to threads and debates. One of which I said a take I found to be pretty rational at the time. I said something along the likes (This was on an account before I created Rico so the history of it got lost) of "Hurley just cashed his ticket to a bigger job, it was fun having him on Staten Island."
It was then I got a breakthrough.
I received a DM from WOJ! The Woj!
Now before I show the DM, I should tell you Woj is connected to the Hurley's because he wrote a very popular book about Bob Senior and his time at St.Anthony's High School in Jersey City.
He was connected enough to them to write a book, so of course he would know the scoop on Hurley right? Or be the one to say where he was going to go next, or be excited for his next job right?
Here's the DM.
I was stunned! I was shocked! I was even appalled to be honest. How could a guy so connected not think he was going to take a different job? How could a friend not be excited for another friend? How could a guy who makes his life on scoops and reports think someone would stay at a job in the lowest conference in the country when everyone wanted him? I was amazed. He unfollowed me so I couldn't respond. I just had to eat it. Then again, he was the expert and I was just dreaming of becoming a college basketball power broker. I had to stay silent and let the situation play out.
Although it always sat wrong with me the way this man talked down to me. The "I'm right" at the end I vowed to never forget.
Fast forward to that off season …
March 20th, 2012 …
Danny Hurley was introduced as the new coach of Rhode Island.
Quick fact check, Rhode Island isn't within a commutable distance from the NJ area.
Woj was wrong. I was right.
I let him know every chance I got and tried to tie in any big name journalist I could over the years.
You get the point. He had blocked me and refused to issue an apology.
Last night I was attending the East Regional and knew Woj was in attendance. So I took my shot (per Big Cat's orders) to go get an apology from Woj himself and put this thing to bed.
Fairly quickly I go to MSG and made my way to Woj himself.
The convo went as follows .
RB : "Hey Adrian , fan of your work. I'm here to put this all to bed."
Woj : "Put what to bed?"
RB - "I'm the guy who tweets at you about you being wrong about Danny Hurley, you know when you said he wouldn't leave."
Woj : "What do you mean?"
RB : "Do you remember any tweets about you saying Danny Hurley not leaving NJ? I'm the guy."
Woj : "Oh yea Bosco"
RB : "Yeah well he left you were wrong."
Woj : "Yeah he left"
RB: "You never publicly apologized, or said you were wrong and I was right."
Woj "It was a private conversation."
RB : "Yeah but I was right … and it would go a long way for my rep to have that on record that you apolgized or said I was right."
Woj : "I'm not gonna do that for a private conversation I can't do that."
RB : " Ok I'll put it to bed but you admit you were wrong ?"
Woj : "Yeah I was wrong it's over."
I consider that a very happy, very civil way of ending the beef. It would have been nice if he gave out a public apology like a newspaper has to do when they print something wrong. But at this stage in my life, I don't want to carry so much beef for so long. I want to shed those weights and live much more free and loose. This was a start.
Woj said he was wrong, and even though I want him to, it was a private conversation so he may not have to let the whole world know the deal. Even though if we were keeping score .. .I was right. When I rest my head on the pillow, I'll know I was right and he will know I was right and that's enough for me at the end of the day.