BOSTON (CBS) — ESPN’s Chris Haynes, who broke the Celtics’ signing of Gordon Hayward on the afternoon of the Fourth of July, actually knew about it in the morning. But he did his due diligence and waited for further confirmation before finally breaking the news.
Then, he waited for vindication.
Haynes spoke in a new podcast with Alex Kennedy of HoopsHype, detailing the whirlwind of news and social media takes that followed in the wake of the Hayward signing. Haynes had to board a plane after breaking the news, so he missed much of the chaos that ensued in the hours after his report.
After finally landing and catching up with the fallout of his tweet – which included a denial from Hayward’s agent Mark Bartelstein – Haynes stood by his report. He had his Hulk Hogan response ready for when Hayward finally made his announcement in The Players Tribune.
“You’re just playing the waiting game,” said Haynes. “You know you’re going to be vindicated. You just don’t know when … I knew at some point it would come back in my favor.”
Haynes admitted that he regretted not informing Bartelstein of his knowledge of Hayward’s decision before reporting it, a common practice for journalists in all areas.
“Those are three first-class organizations that [Hayward’s camp] were dealing with … so for those teams to find out about Hayward’s decision through me? That’s like a slap in the face,” said Haynes. “The only thing I did apologize to Mark about was I should have at least called him first – but I wasn’t going to change my report.”
Lost in the insanity that went down in the Hayward saga was that Haynes was not only right all along, but knew it and stood by it to the end.