ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski — a noted basketball journalist whose frequent breaking news stories about the NBA have famously come to be known in fan and media circles as “Woj Bombs” — has issued an apology to Republican Sen. Josh Hawley after writing “F*ck you” in an email to the Missouri legislator.
The conflict arose quickly on July 10 after Hawley tweeted a picture of an email his office had sent to NBA Commissioner Adam Silver. In this message, the senator took the league to task for failing to support protesters in Hong Kong and other groups such as the military and police as it currently makes moves to do so on behalf of the Black Lives Matter movement.
“If @NBA is going to put social cause statements on uniforms, why not ‘Support our Troops’ or ‘Back the Blue’? Or given how much $$ @nba makes in #China, how about ‘Free Hong Kong’!” he wrote in the tweet itself. “Today I wrote to Adam Silver to ask for answers.”
In response to Hawley’s letter to Silver, Wojnarowski was compelled to send his email, which contained nothing but the aforementioned text and a “Sent from my iPhone” footer. Wojnarowski’s email was subsequently made public by the senator on Twitter in the form of a screenshot.
“Don’t criticize #China or express support for law enforcement to @espn. It makes them real mad,” added Hawley in the tweet.
Wojnarowski did not deny that he had sent the senator the email or double down on his attack after being outed, instead offering a prompt apology to the senator, as well as his own employer, via Twitter.
“I was disrespectful and I made a regrettable mistake. I’m sorry for the way I handled myself and I am reaching out immediately to Senator Howley to apologize directly,” he wrote. “I also need to apologize to my ESPN colleagues because I know my actions were unacceptable and should not reflect on any of them.”
Hawley’s letter referred to the NBA drawing widespread criticism in October of last year for failing to show support for the people of Hong Kong as they protested a proposed legal measure that would have allowed for the extradition of its citizens to China in order to face trial. Those protests spurred a deeper movement against police brutality and the Chinese government seemingly threatening the region’s autonomy.
After Houston Rockets general manager Daryl Morey expressed support for the movement on social media, the league elected to disavow his comments and apologize for the offense they may have caused people in China.
As shared previously by The Inquisitr, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo joined politicians on both sides of the aisle in decrying efforts by the Chinese government to push the extradition bill.