Brian Windhorst, ESPN basketball analyst, writer, and TV personality is best known for his interest in covering and writing about the career life of basketball star, LeBron James.
For over 15 years, Brian has covered James since he was 14. But during the event of the recent opening of the, I promise school, a school funded by James in his hometown in Akron, Ohio, Brian was evidently absent.
Brian has endured a lot of negative comments and accusations as much as he has enjoyed an enviable career, the reason for the former, being that basketball fans have labeled him a sycophant for thriving and profiteering upon the stardom of one of the most famous basketballers in the world.
When James joined the Lakers over the summer, many people who expected Brian to move, instinctively as well to Los Angeles, were shocked as the ESPN analyst remained put in Omaha, where he has lived since 2014 with his wife.
Brian, who is now 40, had worked as a secretary for The Akron Beacon Journal during his high school days. He worked as a freelancer for the paper while attending Kent State University. After his college year, he was hired as a full-time reporter to cover sports events in high schools in Kent State. His promotion came in 2003, as a beat reporter for the Cavaliers, the same year James was drafted first overall by the team. He later moved to ESPN in 2010, partly due to his affiliation with LeBron James.
As a result of his joining ESPN and invariably decamping to Miami, fans became incensed, snickering and throwing things at him to register their grievances, mocking him for following James around.
Since he joined ESPN, Windhorst has been thrust into a harsh public glare. He remarked that after appearing on television for coverage of the Heat playoff series, he got a phone call from Tony Kornheiser.
“He was like, ‘Brian, you can’t wear that shirt on television ever again.’ I didn’t have a TV wardrobe.”
Kornheiser later had Brian meet up with his wardrobe stylist, but her services were too expensive for him.
Rachel Nichols, who sometimes co-hosts the coverage of the Heat with Brian, taught him how to perfect his television appearance and got him his first makeup kit.
Recently, Brian has rebuked the sports media for its style and inaccuracy of reporting his words. When he broke the news of the Cavaliers’ guard, J.R. Smith, who was suspended for hurling a bowl of soup at an assistant, in March, it sparked off a needless reaction — to ascertain what type of soup had been hurled.
“I knew instantly that it was chicken tortilla,” Windhorst said. Dismayed that due attention was not paid to the articles he had written but to the type of soup that had been thrown, he gave no report concerning the details. “It was sort of like my silent protest,” he said.
Now in his 16th year of league coverage, Brian has perfected the art of reporting and television appearance. He has also survived many layoffs and downsizing at ESPN.
“I just want to keep on merrily going,” Windhorst said. “Five or six times a year where the boss is like: ‘Oh, all right, he’s not a piece of trash. He’s all right.’”