Victor Wembanyama in an Oct. 2022 game against the G-League Ignite. Oct 4, 2022; Henderson, NV, USA; Boulogne-Levallois Metropolitans 92 forward Victor Wembanyama (1) looks on during the game against the NBA G League Ignite at The Dollar Loan Center. Mandatory Credit: Lucas Peltier-USA TODAY Sports

We’ve seen lots of fake reporter stories over the years, but it’s more unusual to see a real reporter and a fake interview. That seems to be what happened Wednesday with an article on top NBA prospect Victor Wembanyama that was published on, the website of the International Basketball Federation. As per Joe Morgan of Fox News, Wembanyama called out the quotes in the article as fake on an Instagram story Wednesday:

That led to this apology, piece deletion, and relationship termination with the freelancer in question (who was not named) by FIBA:

As mentioned above, there have been plenty of cases of fake reporters, fake Twitter accounts, and fake quotes in sports. But fabricated quotes in an article are a little more unusual. There have been several high-profile cases of that in the news media, but those have often centered around “man on the street” quotes that would seemingly be harder to prove as false (even if they were eventually disproved in the end). Doing this with an extremely prominent athlete (presuming that Wembanyama’s denial is accurate) with his own massive social media platform to call you out is certainly a choice, and not a good one.

It’s also interesting that this came out right around the same time as an actual prominent interview with Wembanyama (who’s seen above during an Oct. 4 game against the G-League Ignite, featured in the G-League’s “The Break” docuseries). That would be the March Sports Illustrated cover story, written by recently-laid-off writer Jeremy Woo:

So, that’s an option to read if you’re looking for actual quotes from Wembanyama. And not ones invented by a contributor.

[Fox News; photo from Lucas Peltier/USA Today Sports]

About Andrew Bucholtz

Andrew Bucholtz has been covering sports media for Awful Announcing since 2012. He is also a staff writer for The Comeback. His previous work includes time at Yahoo! Sports Canada and Black Press.