Many Cavaliers fans have enjoyed Brian Windhorst articles throughout this season and previous seasons. Brian’s articles appeared in many publications including ESPN.com and many other local and International publications.
Brian took sometime this afternoon to answer some questions about his career, childhood and his thoughts about the Cavaliers this off season.
CavsNews: How many years have you been writing about the Cavaliers?
Brian Windhorst: I just finished my fourth season on the beat.
CavsNews: As a child did you always want to become a sports journalist?
Brian Windhorst: When I was a kid, I kept stats for my mother’s high school (St. Vincent-St. Mary in Akron) softball team. Then at St. V, I played golf for a successful team and kept stats for successful football and women’s basketball teams. The basketball team won a state title during my years. All that linked me to reporters, who came to know me as a person they could do to for info. I was attracted to that job.
CavsNews: As a child what was your favorite sport to play?
Brian Windhorst: My favorite sport was baseball. Which is ironic, because I am not a baseball fan today.
CavsNews: Do you travel with the team for away games?
Brian Windhorst: Nope, I am one of Continental Airlines’ biggest customers.
CavsNews: What are the key(s) to being a successful journalist?
Brian Windhorst: Developing relationships and keeping perspective. It will allow you to break news and give fans a viewpoint they will appreciate.
CavsNews: At what point before, during or after the game do you decide on what the theme of your article will be?
Brian Windhorst: It is a constantly evolving in my mind. You consider it as you watch the game.
CavsNews: What is your most memorable story?
Brian Windhorst: Probably the night when the Cavs won the LeBron lottery. Being there in New Jersey in the studio and feeling the moment was memorable.
CavsNews: Do you like interviewing players, coaches, front office or owners the best?
Brian Windhorst: I don’t think any one is more important than the other. I think it is vital for a beat writer to have a professional relationship with the general manager and the coach. Players will be moody and sometimes play favorites and there’s nothing you can do about it.
CavsNews: Which cities do you enjoy visiting the most?
Brian Windhorst: San Antonio, Seattle, Portland and Milwaukee.
CavsNews: Which city from a journalistic perspective would be the most difficult to work in?
Brian Windhorst: No doubt, New York. Perhaps Toronto second.
CavsNews: With the national media attention during the Playoffs especially the NBA Finals, how was it like reporting about your Cavaliers?
Brian Windhorst: Once you get to the conference finals, it ceasing being “your” team and you are just one of the masses of media. I was able to break three or four stories in the conference finals and finals, so that was rewarding.
CavsNews: You have been writing for ESPN.COM during the season, how special is that for a beat writer and are you going to write for them more often? Should we expect to see you on Sports Center next season?
Brian Windhorst: I interviewed for a job with ESPN two years ago, when Chris Sheridan was hired. From that point on, I developed a relationship with them. I wrote for them several times last year and covered Las Vegas summer league. This year I benefited from the Cavs have a long run. I just think ESPN wants good content and whether I am writing for the paper, my blog, a Japanese mag I write for, a Chinese website, or ESPN I try to provide that.
CavsNews: You have been to other basketball arenas around the country, how do you rate The Q and the fans?
Brian Windhorst: The Q is no doubt in the top 10. It is a nice arena, even though it isn’t the newest. It still feels new. The fans are up there as well, especially since they are developing some traditions and some identity with the Cavs’ playoff runs.
CavsNews: Finally, what do you think the Cavaliers will do this off season?
Brian Windhorst: They really want to make a major trade to bring in another “big time” player. But Danny Ferry has time, he has shown he will be conservative. I also expect them to attempt to find more shooters, which is always their mission it seems. I think Sasha and Andy will be back, but it’s nowhere near 100 percent certainty.