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Woj vs Shams: who was the fastest in announcing the picks in the 2022 NBA Draft?

The ESPN insider was accused of spoiling the party, but in the end he wasn’t even correct so who won?

Woj vs Shams: who was the fastest in announcing the picks in the 2022 NBA Draft?
Arturo HolmesAFP

In what is becoming an increasingly fierce battle between the two ‘inside men,’ the question as to who was first may actually be less important this time around compared to ‘who was right?’

It’s Adrian Wojnarowski vs Shams Charania

As an insider for ESPN, Adrian Wojnarowski is often at the center of the latest and greatest breaking news in the world of the NBA. So too it should be said is his counter part, The Athletic/Stadium’s Shams Charania. Indeed, both men have developed a fun rivalry in recent years, as they often race to be the first to break significant stories about players and teams. One such contest and perhaps the biggest is that of the NBA Draft. Woj and Shams as they are commonly known normally go toe for toe on Draft day, as the battle to be first to spoil the surprise of who gets picked and what team they go to.

Adrian Wojnarowski jumped the gun on NBA Draft day

This year’s NBA Draft offered up a surprising twist in the game between the ‘Inside Men.’ It was still Thursday morning - the day of the 2022 NBA Draft - when Adrian Wojnarowski broke the news to the world via social media that the top three picks in this year’s NBA Draft had in fact been confirmed and with that, Wojnarowski proceeded to inform us all that the Magic would target forward Jabari Smith at No. 1, the Thunder would take Chet Holmgren at No. 2, and the Rockets would select Duke’s star Paolo Banchero at No. 3.

A coup for Wojnarowski, who in that moment had seemingly pipped his long standing rival, The Athletic/Stadium’s Shams Charania to the line, however, there was one problem. While Wojnarowski was undoubtedly first in breaking the news, it turns out he wasn’t actually correct in that in the end it was essentially the reverse of what he seemingly ‘confirmed.’ That’s right, it was Paolo Banchero who was selected at No. 1 by the Orlando Magic, Chet Holmgren went at No. 2 and is now off to the OKC Thunder and Woj’s top pick Jabari Smith was ultimately selected at No. 3 by the Houston Rockets.

Does it matter if NBA Draft picks are announced early?

While it’s not entirely a crisis if Draft picks are leaked to the public earlier than when the Draft itself occurs, it can cause some problems. If one thing is clear about NBA teams around Draft time, it’s that they are the total opposite of secure when it comes to information such that it can in turn affect the kind of offers teams receive for their draft picks. Needless to say some teams even use this as an intentional tactic in an effort to feel out the market. Consider for a moment that if it’s ‘confirmed’ that ‘Team A’ will pick ‘Player B’ they can get an almost immediate look at what other teams might be willing to offer for their new prospect.

What’s the verdict on Woj vs Shams

In the end we’re thinking that the vote might have to be given to Shams Charania. Though Wojnarowski was indeed the first to announce the top 3 picks, his information was ultimately proven to be incorrect. As the night went on the back and forth between the pair seemed to intensify, with both countering the claims of the other constantly, but as was mentioned before it was Woj who got the key point wrong with an extra early disclosure on Draft day.