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Washington Post Reporter Crosses the Line with John Wall


johnwall

If you have been on the site over the last couple of days, you have seen a number of links to this profile of John Wall in the Washington Post from the Sunday edition. As I stated last night, I think it is a very well-written and interesting portrait of a kid who has overcome a great deal and is about to see his dreams realized. However one portion of the story bothered me from the initial moment I read it. The reporter did some searching into Wall’s past, specifically the criminal history of his father, leading to this exchange:

After a sweltering workout in the gymnasium of his former high school last week, Wall sat on the first row of bleachers recounting his childhood. He hardly knew anything about his dad’s time in jail. He learned just this month that his parents got married in prison, after hearing relatives talking about the dress his mom wore. He still had no idea why his father was locked up.

Wall stretched out his legs, revealing his yet-unnamed personal line of Reebok sneakers, and leaned his elbows back on the second row, seemingly at ease.

“I think it was just for an altercation or something that happened,” Wall said, wiping sweat from his face. “I don’t really know. It was something that happened.”

The only record of what happened can be found in microfilm archives deep within a courthouse located just a half mile from where Wall lived on East Davie Street: On Sept. 30, 1991 — less than a month after his son’s first birthday — John Carroll Wall walked into a convenience store in Raleigh, removed one beer and continued to the checkout where clerk Cecil Ibegbu stood. Wall placed a $1 bill on the counter. He then removed a .22-caliber Ruger from the back of his jeans and pointed it at Ibegbu, demanding all the money in the register. He was convicted of robbery with a dangerous weapon.

Sitting in the gym following his workout, Wall was told his father robbed a convenience store. He offered a slight nod and said, “Uh-huh.”

Before meeting his mother, Wall’s father had served three other sentences, one for armed robbery, another for possession of a firearm by a felon and a third for second-degree murder, after shooting a 26-year-old housewife in the head following an argument.

Sitting on the bleachers, Wall learned for the first time that his father had served prison time before he was born and that the crime was murder. He offered no affirmation and looked away for a moment.

Ohhhh,” he said, dragging the sound for a second. “Oh, I didn’t even know. I didn’t know.”

He paused, but not for long. He took a quick glance at the basketball court — the place that helped him quickly rise to stardom in high school — before making eye contact again. He was calm, but his speech slowed.

“My mom never told me. I heard he had one robbery thing,” he said. “That is all I knew. I never knew anything about that other part. She would never tell me, she would not want to tell me or my sisters.”

Was he ever curious?

“I was not curious,” Wall said. “I was just happy to see my dad and talk to him.”

The gym was almost empty, except for a few of Wall’s mentors and friends chatting on the other side of the court following Wall’s 80-minute workout. Wall was asked why his dad’s past has done little to diminish his opinion of him.

“Well, because, for one thing, that’s my dad,” Wall answered without hesitation. “He brought me onto this earth and, like everybody, makes mistakes. Everyone is not going to be perfect. Sometimes people do some stuff because of certain situations they are in, or the people they are around. Or they might be drunk or something and just do it.

“Like I said, he still was there for me. . . . Probably if I were older, you would have been, ‘Forget him, he ain’t my daddy, he ain’t here for me, taking care of me.’ At a young age, you don’t know, you don’t care. You’re just happy to have somebody there that you can call your dad. And that’s the biggest thing.”

Wall has declined to get tattoos because of concerns over his image for marketing reasons, but he is considering getting one on his chest, considering it strongly enough that he has a specific design in mind. It would be of his dad’s face, with clouds surrounding, and the words “Forever Living On.”

Now imagine that scene for a minute. Just days before John Wall reaches a goal that he has worked for his entire life, a reporter for a newspaper, someone who is likely a stranger to Wall, looks at him and informs him for the first time that his father had killed someone. To me, that action is wholly inappropriate and somewhat shameful. John Wall is now a public figure, and as such, his background and life before he became known is arguably relevant. I dont believe people’s family members are necessarily relevant indicators of a person’s character, but I also know that in today’s day and age, what your family did in the past, will be brought up as part of your future. So while I probably would not have done that research into his father’s past and included it in the story, I dont think it is malicious to do so. But once the reporter knew that Wall was not aware of his father’s criminal past, I find it highly inappropriate for him to believe that he should be the one to break the news to Wall. It is clear that both his mother, and for that matter John, have made a conscious decision not to bring up that part of the past in their lives. For a reporter to believe he has the right to report that past is one thing. But then to take the next step and personally tell John and THEN to record his comments and include them in the story, to me that crosses the line.

The writer’s name is Eric Prisbell and I wont go so far as to impute upon him negative motives. The portrayal as a whole is fair and is possibly the best insight into Wall that I have read since he came upon the scene in Lexington. But there are lines that reporters should not cross. If Prisbell felt like he owed the readers a look into Wall’s deceased father’s past, then so be it. But Prisbell should not have made himself the self-appointed messenger to personally tell Wall what is likely one of the most hurtful truths that could exist in his life. And even if he were to do that, to quote his natural reaction in a newspaper story is not a journalistic potrayal, but simply sensationalism. I fully admit that I may not be the best indicator of what journalists consider their self-created standards of ethics and it may be the case that I am alone in finding this inappropriate. But for me, a newspaper reporter focusing on Wall is not Maury Povich. It isnt his job to expose his subject to his past secrets or history. Prisbell did that and to me, that is inappropriate.

Article written by Matt Jones

62 responses to “Washington Post Reporter Crosses the Line with John Wall”

  1. WildcatRX7

    Good work, Matt. I completely agree.

  2. blockK

    That does cross the line. While it’s the truth and an ugly truth at that about his father, it’s a shame that kind of relevation had to come in the form of an interview – especially once previewing what should be a very happy occassion for the young Mr. Wall.

    I agree with Matt – it’s all about sensationalism.

    Wall is in NO way responsible for his father’s actions – and to put him on the spot like that is simply wrong.

  3. buk

    Seriously, thats terrible.

  4. SUPREMECATS

    what a scumbag…i read the piece and it didn’t even click…what an a-hole. put him on blast Jones!…confront him and have him explain it. let’s give him the Shaugnessy treatment.

  5. jaxcat1

    I read the article and it is a must read for all UK fans. It was very well done except for the part were the reporter bush-wacked John with the information about he dad’s past. With that said, our man, Wall handled himself like the perfect gentleman with his responce. I am so glad that John Wall attended the University of Kentucky, he makes me proud to be a fan!

  6. catfan4life90

    reading that in the article sickened me, i just don’t understand how a reporter could feel that he has the authority and need to tell Wall something about his since deceased father’s past that his mother has not mentioned to him during his 19 year life. did he not realize that obviously it was best to not tell him if his mom had felt that way the whole time? as good as the article may have been, i can’t respect it in any way for that.

    when you first put the article up, that was the first thing i noticed after reading it. i was wondering if i was the only one who noticed. thanks Matt, i completely agree.

  7. Lexington Conception

    Felt the exact same way when i was reading this yesterday. Almost sent the reporter a note, but I thought I may have been alone on this one. I cannot believe he felt like he was the best person to break that news to him.

  8. gossie21

    That reporter must have been from UT, because that was low-down, dirty.

  9. King Cal

    wall’s composure it incredible…truly a class act even when put in an situation such as this.

  10. catbalue

    Totally unfounded, unwarranted, uncalled for and a classless act by someone who should know better. It really sounds like something JT would do but to his credit even he hasn’t stooped that low, yet. What business is it of his or anyones else what happened with John Wall’s father? The main point is John Wall respected and admires his father and the press should leave well enough alone. I admire the way JW handled the situation, it shows how much he has grown into a fine young man that any father would be proud. Keep up the good work JW and the best to you in the league, know you will be an all star it’s just a matter of time.

  11. ctoafn

    I’m glad I wasn’t the only one who felt this way. Completely wrong to “break the news” to him. At some point it becomes none of you stinkin’ business, even if the person is a public figure.

  12. UKfansNKY

    This reporter needs a good ol blanket party thrown for him. What a prick!!! GO CATS!!!!!

  13. PatrickPattersonISwalkingthruthatdoor

    Just another example of the God Complex so often seen in the demeanors and actions of big shot journalists.

  14. minton

    It was ONLY his mother’s place to tell him something like that when the time was right. That reporter is a jackass. No class whatsoever. Just a vulture.

  15. dcgirl

    I’m actually with the reporter on this. Wall is a public figure and his father’s criminal record is a matter of public record. In the end, for John, this was probably a good way to find out — it would come out eventually and possibly in a worse environment. Maybe Prisbell could have gone to his mother or agent and told them he knew and let them break the news. Truth is his agent/PR people should have gotten ahead of this, made sure John knew, and made sure it came out in a friendly environment. A large part of John’s story includes that his dad was in prison — you can’t tell that story with out answering why.

    Prisbell did a live chat today on the WaPo Web site — http://live.washingtonpost.com/john-wall.html

    He stated…

    i was uncomfortable being in the position knowing such information that John may not have known (I didn’t know what he knew before I talked with him). But when I got the records, it was then that I realized how long of a record the dad had. Before that, I just wanted to get the gist of what he had done if we had to include the background information.

    Once I got the records, then I found myself in a situation that I found to be unsettling. I’ve been in a lot of odd situations in my career, but this made me uncomfortable. First, I wrestled with the idea of IF I should tell John, etc. But, hey, the driving force in his life is his dad, and he cherishes the memories from those prison visits. If I incldue that, how do I not include what the dad did and how long he was in there?

    Then the question became how to do it. I talked all this through with editors, of course. We wanted to handle this with extreme care. We wanted to be sensitive, delicate, respectful. Both in how we wrote it and how I talked about it with john. I did not want to mention specifics with John, and I did not. John and I got into the heavy stuff about 12 minutes into a 45-minute talk. We talkd for a long while after that. The fact is: Even after I told John, it did not change his feelings toward his father. That says something pretty strong about John and his relationship with his father. The three words that jump out to me when thinking about John: humble, polite and mature.

    I udnerstand reasonable people can and will disagree on the disclosure issue. But i am comfortable with the decisions we made because of how I handled it.

  16. ukgal23

    I thought it was a good article on Wall until I got to that part. Wall may be the #1 draft pick but he is still a person. I don’t think that was repectful to him, his father or his family.

  17. nybrasky

    I couldn’t agree more and thought the same thing while reading yesterday. I thought Wall handled it as well as possible but it made me angry while reading. Thanks for calling him out.

    The only thing more surprising is that Tipton didn’t already dig that stuff up.

    I’m proud John Wall came to UK and he’ll always be a Cat. Best of luck in the NBA and keep doing big things for your family.

  18. Patrick

    My Main Man Matt,

    “Prisbell did that and to me, that is inappropriate.”

    Enough said…I couldn’t agree with you more! Last night when I read the article I was shocked the reporter did that to John. Total “Richard” move.

  19. SexnNursinHomes

    15- so what if the reporter had prior knowledge of wall’s dad arrests. Unless, and the last time I checked, there is no “criminal gene”, there is a pathology of disese that runs early in wall’s male side that may affect his career in washington, then who gives a flying f*^K what wall’s dad did in the early 80’s.

  20. clhcat

    I would love to vote for the KSR hall of fame but the beer ad covers the ballot. Does anyone else have this issue? Thanks

  21. SexnNursinHomes

    Jwall is obviously at peace with his dad, no need of opening new problems on the kid.

  22. buk

    20) nope

  23. BigCatDaddy4263

    Could someone please tell me that “if” Royce White does come to UK this summer, is he eligible to play basketball this season 2010-2011? Thank You, I will hang up and listen for your comments….

  24. cawoodcorner

    Wholeheartedly agree Matt. Thank you for airing your opinion on this, as I have been thinking the same thing ever since reading it last night, and wondering why it was lauded. This guy is a piece of sh*t telling John in this manner.

  25. jaxcat07

    John handled himself well. It’s unfortunate that he learned about it this way. I am actually surprised it took this long for the media to pick up on it.

  26. Patrick

    15. dcgirl Says:
    June 21st, 2010 at 2:12 pm
    “I’m actually with the reporter on this….”

    Love the live blog CYA the reporter puts out…as for your total agreement, what are you his wife, mother, girlfriend, etc. Reasonable people will not only disagree with you both….but likely avoid ever having anything to do with you. TOTAL SLIM-BALL MOVE!

  27. ThatKentuckyKid

    DC Girl i wanna know who the F#@% you think you are to believe that the press have the right to inform a 19 year old kid that his father murdered someone!! A secret in which his mother has kept from him for 19 years. Did you or that reporter ever stop to think that his mother wanted this kept a secret for a reason? Has I read the article, i found myself entranced by just how well written and put together this article truly was. I’ve read tons of John Wall articles but this one showed a side I have yet to see. The second I came across

    “Sitting on the bleachers, Wall learned for the first time that his father had served prison time before he was born and that the crime was murder. He offered no affirmation and looked away for a moment.”

    i was utterly shocked to see that anyone would share such secretive information about ones family and then right a damn article about it. Great article but this is sickening

  28. Villa4Life

    As a former journalist of more than a decade, I have these thoughts:

    1) I don’t believe there is any way John Wall didn’t know about his dad killing someone, not in this information age. If I had to guess, he probably tells people he doesn’t know to avoid be questioned about it (which is very smart).

    2) I don’t know how I would have handled the issue if I was in Prisbell’s shoes. I felt uncomfortable reading about the exchange. But, if you’ve gone and done the research, you’re going to include the rap sheet in the story. What do you do, say “Well, I don’t want to offend John or hurt his feelings, so I’m going to leave the fact that dad killed someone out of this story about the relationship he had with his dad.” ??? I think it would have been worse if just published the fact and didn’t tell John (again, if he didn’t really know) so John could read about it in the Post.

    3) I come to this site because I’m a die-hard UK fan, but I get a little tired of the constant ripping on journalists who don’t do the same Big Blue propoganda the bloggers here do. You guys are good at what you do. Many of these journalits are good at what they do (yes, on certain days that means Jerry Tipton). Just because you don’t like it doesn’t mean these guys don’t know what they’re talking about.

    KSR forever. Thanks for bringing up this topic. It’s a good one.

  29. ThatKentuckyKid

    28, I’m pretty sure the story would of still be suffice by just saying that his father was imprisoned for multiple crimes.

    Having a freaking reporter inform you that your father murder a person is like having a telemarketer informing you that your dad is really the mailman.

  30. SexnNursinHomes

    28- your 3)- so the media is victim huh? last time i checked
    1. negative media towards big Cuz
    2. Izzo gets a decade to decide on nba job
    3. pete carroll only gets a slight coverage, if it was UK and Cal- all over us like a can of a hot can of beans
    4. roy boy gets players to skip their senior year. but if Cal does it, instant sh*t storm
    5. beldsoe gets in, but he cheats, yet coleman qualifies for the dirty birds, he was a hard worker
    6. tipton
    these are just within the last year

  31. Calipari'sInYourEar

    It shows incredible restrain for John to not turn the conversation on that reporter and say, “some people do things in their lives that are inappropriate. Some people cross the line. They do it for one reason or another. Maybe to make a name for themselves, or to become more popular so they can make more money. Would you ever do anything for those motives?”

  32. SexnNursinHomes

    bledsoe, my bad

  33. Cuz Cousins

    When I was reading the story, I was a little shocked by this as well. He could have asked him if he would like to know, or at the very least wait until they were in private and not do it in front of a gym full of people.

    None the less, John handeled the surprise attack very well…better than I think I would have.

  34. Patrick

    #28.
    What a heartless troll….. Wow, screaming that the BBN is hard on the media.

    I can’t stop laughing at the irony. Like a prostitute yelling at a “John” for not taking a bath. Unreal. I guess one man’s reality is another man’s LSD trip.

  35. Gaytor Hater

    I don’t understand today’s journalism. It’s mostly garbage and pretty much the main reason these papers are going into the tank. For a newspaper to bring up something like that – especially when Wall doesn’t even know about it – is just wrong. That’s not something he should learn from a reporter and it’s not the reporter’s place to tell him. These people just know no bounds and will do anything to “spice up” a story to sell papers. What does Wall’s dad’s past have to do with anything? As a reader i could care less. A lot of these athletes come from broken or dysfunctional homes. That’s just the way it is. You can find something in anyone’s past. But trying to dig things up – it’s obvious this person went out of their way to find out – is just bad journalism. Public figure or not some things are just out of bounds.

    I would love for there to be a paper or blog that would fire back at these reporters. They could dig up things about their past and put them out there for the public to see. Let’s see how they like their private lives opened up to the public. Maybe one of them would find out their mom was a slut that banged strange dudes every night to support her drug habit.

  36. colornine

    John will be making many headlines for the Wizards over the next few years. I think if I were him, I would ignore their media requests for interviews.

  37. JackNicklaus

    Let me see if I get this straight…reporter self-appoints himself to dig up family info and then self-appoints himself as the one to tell his subject (who has graciously allowed him an interview) about family secrets, because its his duty to in the name of journalism?! What a crock of crapola. What-in-the-wild-wild-world-of-Tipton is going on around here?! Self-righteous, arrogant boobs!

  38. Horse Trader

    Matt, thank you for commenting as you did on this. That part of the story literally made me sick and my heart went out to John. That reporter was way out of line breaking that fact to John, and even though he had done the research and knew the facts, they certainly could have been written about in a much more discreet and respectful manner without disclosing all of the details. Just say John’s father had spent time in prison on a variety of charges.

  39. KaiserSoujay

    That is absolutely OUTRAGEOUS.

  40. goodchange

    Do you guys honestly beliveve he did not know about it? We live in a modern day of technology
    when we know whether Jared Carter went to O’Charleys and what he ate. You dont believe
    John Wall didnt know his Dad was put in jail multiple times and didnt know it was for murder on one
    occasion. Wake Up people. They kept it from the media as long as they could for his benefit, which
    is the right thing to do. Matt Jones you are correct it was inappropriate for him to attack John Wall
    in the way he did, but I find it impossible to believe he didnt know. I find it impossible to believe
    both John Wall and his sister never try to find out, impossible to believe. I am the biggest John Wall
    fan there is and in my eyes his status has improved tremendously.

  41. DT in DC

    I left him a “nice” email and comment to the story online. You all should do the same. Let them know it’s not okay behavior.

  42. catbalue

    I can guarantee you it will be brought up again by the media. They are like a bunch of sharks circling in for the kill. Once they smell blood they are on it. Completley without ethics and class on discussing an issue that wasn’t even really germain to the story at all. What is he trying to accomplish tearing down JW’s opinion of his father? His mother has obviously protected him from this his whole life and now we have some looney tunes writer releasing personal information that really isn’t anyone’s business at all. John Wall wants to keep the memory of his father sacred to he and his family, which is right to do. The reporter has obviously crossed the line with a lack of a sense of ethics in this case.

  43. NotTheSlickistRick

    It was a good article up until the time the reporter made those callous comments about John’s father. I was shocked to read his disclosures, but I was delighted by John’s apparent response. His maturity goes well beyond his years, and is a credit to his mother, and some of those coaches that helped prepare him to reach his potential. I wish he could have stayed at UK for 3 years, but alas that is the nature of basketball these days. I think all Cat fans will agree that John has been a special player and individual that will be a good ambassador for the BBN for decades to come.

  44. Cartier

    To everyone hating on DCgirl for sharing her opinions, she has a very valid point. Whereas i may not agree with the reporter, it wasn’t his right to tell JW about his father, but he did have information in his hands that would eventually have leaked out. Better it happen this way than on TMZ…? Think about that trashrag of a news source. The way journalism is today, it seems ethics have gone in two separate directions: there is a way to be too PC, and there is the very opposite as going towards sensational. What happened to the middle?

    Anyway, someone said that “it’s not the reporter’s right to tell JW that his father was a murderer.” Well how about families broken up when they see their mom or dad splashed on the front page of the New York Post for infidelity. It’s a shame, but it happens and it will continue to happen. Just be glad that the reporter and JW handled it more carefully than what could have been blown up in his face.

    Again, i don’t agree that he told him about his father, but what’s done is done. It could be worse.

  45. crazydave4

    If it makes it to the four letter network with all the talking heads….we’ll see what the perception is and if it really crossed the line.

    Our views are obviously one-sided, but there has been a precedent with athletes and the past’s of their fathers. If anything, it is only going to boost him in a positive way…imo.

    However, it may have been tacky, but what does it say that he was never told this (if you believe that)?

  46. Blasphemy

    I whole-heartedly agree. The entire article up to, and after this section, was great. The reporter was obviously doing something malicious. When I read that part, late last night, I about blew a gasket. This guy should be taken to task by his colleagues for this portion of the article, and praised for the rest.

  47. UKfansNKY

    DC Girl #15 YOU are just as much of an idiot as this DA reporter!!! YOU need a blanket party as well!!!

    #44 – What business is it for ANYONE to know JW fathers PAST….. It’s his father and NOT JW!! So leave it the F@#$ alone!!!

  48. UKfansNKY

    #36…….GREAT idea!!!!

  49. Patrick

    #44

    Cartier = Total Homo

  50. Villa4Life

    Wow Patrick you offer a lot to this section.

  51. Cartier

    lol! it’s no one’s business to know anyone’s past, but that’s the nature of the game. sorry to disappoint. and Patrick, good come back. keep em coming

  52. HollywoodCat

    This info was going to come out one way or the other. I’d rather it come out by a reputable publication with good reporting that in tabloids. John Wall handled it like he has everything else that’s been asked of him: with respect and sincerity. If he’s fine, then we should be. End of story. Now it’s over, so let’s move on to more pressing matters like hanging #8 from Rupp’s Rafters.

  53. Cartier

    Thank you 52. That’s what i’m saying

  54. DT in DC

    BTW, I have exchanged emails with him this afternoon. He takes critism well.

    ME: Completely, 110% inapproopriate that you should decide to be the one who told him about his father’s sins. Shame on you. How would you like some jerk reporter to dig up some dirt on your parents and air it publicly and decide he should, after knowing you for a minute, be the one to tell you? If you’re going for a career in gotcha journalism, congrats, you’ve made it.

    HIM: I did not dig up dirt on anyone. There was a reason he was in prison, I needed to talk to john about his feelings toward his dad. I did that in the most careful and delicate way I know how to handle it. I respectfully disagree with you. Write anytime.

    ME: Really? Scouring public records to investigate his father’s criminal
    record isn’t digging up dirt on anyone? Tell my why knowing what his
    dad did makes one bit of difference about how well this kid plays
    ball? You could have talked to John about his dad without playing
    “gotcha” journalism. Making the conscious decision to tell a kid his
    dad was a murderer, something he never chose to find out and something
    his mother thought was in the best interest for her child to not know,
    is plain wrong. Your reporting is the reason why people have such a
    disdain for the media these days. Despicable, but really doesn’t
    surprise me, unfortunately. Enjoy your 15 minutes.

    HIM:I disagree. But that’s okay. I don’t care about making a name for myself. Don’t care. This story was meaningful to me because of what it said about a son’s unconditional love for his father. If the son’s driving force is his father, and if those visits to jail represent such a critical memory, then I don’t believe getting the facts on why he served time if digging for dirt. Just reporting. I pride myself on being thorough and fair.

  55. bluebiscuit

    Another former reporter here. We’re a dime a dozen. Many people are operating under the assumption that this whole article was great, except for the part where the reporter tells Wall about his dad’s record. But, that’s incorrect. The entire article was a piece of bait-and-switch crap. It’s actually a seductive piece of writing, designed to pull readers into the angst-filled life of the young John Wall. The reporter sounds so sensitive and caring. Then the switch — the reporter writes himself into a scene, playing the part of the wise, sensitive one who finally tells John the truth about his dad. Some readers don’t even realize they have just read something that isn’t so sensitive after all, because the reporter sounds so caring. But he’s not caring, he is an opportunist. He has just told a 19-year-old kid who can’t even go to the beach because that is the last place he saw his dad alive, that his dad murdered someone, and he tells the kid this news in the one place, a gym, where the kid has found some release from the anger he has felt over the loss of his dad. Prisbell did this because now he has become a part of the John Wall Story, and when it’s made into a movie, maybe Brad Pitt will play him. And for those who think that oh well, it’s better than what they do on TMZ, well, then, that’s a sad commentary on what journalism has become. And Matt is right to attack it. I’m with #28 who thinks Wall probably knows more on his dad than he lets on. But, he shows respect to both of his parents by not talking about it, and that is what makes him such a decent person.

  56. ronzo

    Reporters always come up with some kind of justification for their actions. Prisbel crossed the line. That is nothing new for the Washington Post.

  57. HuntsVegas

    We’re all mostly in agreement that it wasn’t the reporter’s place to tell him what he may or not known. It doesn’t really change anything, except the end of this particular newspaper story…

    I agree with #28, #40 & #44 on this one, and find it amusing the way the hard core sheep react. It’s better than this coming out on TMZ, with a camera in his face.

    Welcome to the Big Time, and Washington…. This was going to come out eventually. I don’t think anyone has mentioned this, but I was shocked when I read “the bat and the eyebrow” part…. but I kept reading. He was 10 then if that helps you find it. A kid.

    I think JOHN WALL has turned out great, will be a great role model, and face of the Wizards. I’ve been impressed with every interview I’ve seen or heard with him.

    His story IS unique and he can play basketball…

    Kids in similar situations need to lose that anger and people need to reach out and help them. These things were all touched on in the story. Not everybody is a great basketball player, so a lot drop out of school and get lost. From the story, quoting LeVelle Moton: “John Wall has just been John Wall since he was 16. It just clicked one day.”

    Matt – This story was posted originally on KSR as one that: “may end up being one of the best. A great read that showcases a great deal on Wall and his relationship with his father. A must read.” http://kentuckysportsradio.com/?p=54301 Now that you’ve READ it…. the 180. It just had to get put up here fast! That being said, I’d rather hear about it on KSR than from someone trying to get my goat for being a UK fan. It happens down here in Bama….

    I come to KSR to find new stories about Kentucky Sports, so thanks for posting it.

    Go back to shooting the messengers, and me if you want.

  58. Zagnut

    here’s the thing, murder is, in my book, a pretty significant thing. I don’t think the reporter felt like he was making a revelation to John Wall about his father. I think he was discussing Wall’s father with John and was a little surprised he hasn’t known the truth. How would he have known if John Wall was not aware of the murder conviction before their conversation. Again because of the significance of the crime i would have assumed he would have already known. And if the reporter hasn’t mentioned it how else would J. Wall know about the murder conviction? apparently his mother isn’t telling him nor his family. Just to remind you guys, a young housewife was robbed of her life.

  59. Zagnut

    John Wall needed to hear this. Wish someone in his family told him this before some callous journalist did

  60. UK_IceWaterSmooth

    Am I the only one that finds this to be too much of a coincidence???

    The WASHINGTON Wizards are about to draft John Wall with the # 1 pick.

    A reporter from WASHINGTON uncovers the criminal history of John Walls father.

    Said reporter releases the information at the END of a POSITIVE John Wall article.

    After reading the article the readers are left with an unbelieveable admiration for John Wall (desearvingly so).

    Come on people.. 1) John Wall already knew but denied it to keep from having to answer questions about it. (great move). 2) John Wall, The Wizards, and his agent all knew about it and knew the story would be broke soon so why not break it in a controlled POSITVE article.

    Y’all this is PR and damage control at its finest. I for one am glad that THEY were smart enough to get this done before the draft and before some “Tipton” really did attack John with this information. Now the draft can be about what it should be.. how great of a young man John Wall is ans what kind of superstar he will be at the next level!!!

  61. __coreyp__

    I agree with Matt. It was one thing for this guy to put the Wall’s family business out for everyone to read but it’s completely different for him to knowingly offer up the information that was kept from him by his mother based on having his best interest at heart. Tragic. He should be ashamed of himself for using the excuse of being a well informed journalist. I can only imagine the things that were going through Wall’s mind when this perfect stranger decided to bring up some of the most painful memories of his life.

    It was great to see the maturity and composure that he showed and that obviously learning this new information will not change the love that he has for his Dad.

  62. Blue_Lawlz

    I thought the same thing when I read it. Pretty much a douchebag move.