Skip to main content

Why did Rachel Nichols lie?


This one was completely unnecessary and is a reminder the internet never sleeps. I can understand it in a way, we've all done a version of this in our life. Someone tells you about a movie or a song and you go "yeah, I know it." It's a reflex that most often comes from a place of wanting to be liked, one of the cool kids. 

Rachel Nichols obviously wants and needs to be liked by NBA players. That's how you get interviews with Jimmy Butler right after he blows up a practice (and the Timberwolves season). Still, when someone lies and stands nothing to gain and something to lose, on national TV, it's not the best look

Thanks to Reddit and u/bravesabo we have one of those moments. Klay Thompson is one of the best shooters ever and that will be his trademark, but he is also a damn good defender. Draymond revolutionized the Warriors defense, but Klay always guards the opposing teams' toughest perimeter assignment. 

While discussing Klay's defensive reputation and the fact he was never selected for the All-Defense team, Nichols joined McGrady and Pippen in being shocked and then had the slip-up:

Scroll to Continue

Recommended Articles

Rachel Nichols said on the Jump show that she voted for Klay for All-NBA Defense the past two tears, but she actually did not. from nba

Someone noticed, checked and we saw that Nichols didn't pick Klay for All-Defense. This in itself isn't something dramatic, as I explained at the beginning. It does speak to the change in how reporters have to cover NBA players these days. 

Player empowerment means that most reporters work really hard to be liked by NBA players in order to have access and bring us stories about the league. Let me point out being respected and being liked are two different things, but it seems with this new generation of players, it is merging into one. 

On a recent episode of "The Full 48", David Locke talked how the media landscape and player availability have changed and it has become more and more difficult for reporters to have the off the record conversations that build the relationships with the players. If you don't have those, players are more likely to resent you for criticism or an opinion piece. 

But I have a feeling the majority of it is the new generation of social media addicts who also happen to play in the NBA has distorted the way players cope with criticism. Most of them have a trigger-finger to call someone a hater or a blog boy. Let's use this to remind ourselves we don't want pandering to become standard folklore in NBA (and other) reporting.

As Ricky Gervais explained his hosting of the Golden Globes (in which he ridiculed the celebrities in the room) - I can be liked by a few dozen of them here, or millions watching and reading. It's an easy decision. 

Boston Celtics guard Jaylen Brown and forward Jayson Tatum

“The energy is about to shift” — Jaylen Brown’s quote was the Boston Celtics’ battle cry for Game 7

Jaylen Brown tweeted "The energy is about to shift” in January and it kickstarted the turnaround for the Boston Celtics.

Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry and wife Ayesha Curry

Sex, phone, coffee, or weed? Steph Curry tells Ayesha Curry what he couldn't live without for a month

Steph was quick to answer, and according to Ayesha's reaction, he gave the right answer.

Allen Iverson created his own path to the NBA that many players after him have looked to follow

Allen Iverson on creating his own path to the NBA that many players after him have looked to follow

Both on and off the court, Iverson stood out among the rest of his peers and helped revolutionize the NBA

Brooklyn Nets guard Ben Simmons

Brooklyn Nets reveal "summer plan" to fix setbacks with Ben Simmons which includes mental health

The Nets reportedly have come up with a promising plan to help Simmons. We'll believe it when we see it.

Chicago Bulls head coach Phil Jackson, guard Michael Jordan, forward Toni Kukoc, and center Dennis Rodman

That time Phil Jackson made the Chicago Bulls watch “The Wizard of Oz” in practice to send a message

You gotta respect the Zen Master's innovative methods to get his team's head in the game.

Boston Celtics forward Jayson Tatum

“That’s why he gets paid the big bucks” — Jayson Tatum refused to let the Boston Celtics lose Game 6 against the Milwaukee Bucks

Tatum finally stepped up and outdueled Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Milwaukee Bucks in Game 6 to force a winner takes all Game 7