Philadelphia 76ers head coach Doc Rivers watches from the sideline as they take on the Boston Celtics during game two of the 2023 NBA playoffs at TD Garden. Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

It’s been a weird night in the world of NBA breaking news and it somehow got even weirder.

After the Milwaukee Bucks fired head coach Adrian Griffin on Tuesday, reports moved fast to link ESPN NBA analyst Doc Rivers to the job. As of Tuesday evening, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported that Rivers and the Bucks were “engaging…in conversations” and The Athletic’s Shams Charania reported that Rivers was the “leader” for the gig.

Then, during Tuesday’s edition of “Inside the NBA,” host Adam Lefkoe shocked everyone by saying that “CNN Sports” was reporting that Rivers to the Bucks was a done deal.

TNT and CNN are both part of Warner Bros. Discovery.

It was shocking for several reasons. First, “CNN Sports” hasn’t been a thing for years. Second, this news was nowhere to be found on CNN’s website or social media channels. Third, Woj and Shams were radio silent on the matter. And fourth, in case you missed it, there was no specific reporter named regarding the scoop.

While NBA fans tried to figure out what was going on, Front Office Sports’ A.J. Perez noted that the report “did indeed come from CNN and was “fully-vetted” by the network before it was passed along to TNT,” later adding that sources assumed the news wasn’t being shared on CNN’s channels because of the New Hampshire primaries. NY Times reporter Kevin Draper shared a similar comment from CNN.

That still didn’t really pass the smell test for a lot of people. Surely, something as seismic as Doc Rivers agreeing to leave ESPN for an NBA coaching job would have been reported by now by the NBA insiders, especially Woj.

Still, TNT stuck to its guns and even repeated the confirmation at the end of their “Inside the NBA” programming.

Jamal Crawford’s disbelief that CNN was behind the report spoke for so many NBA fans. And he wasn’t the only person at TNT who didn’t believe the confirmation. Their own NBA insider, Chris Haynes, reported right afterward that while the two sides “continue to work towards a deal that will make him the franchise’s next head coach,” there is no deal in place.

But Haynes also works for Bleacher Report, which tweeted out the CNN Sports report:

However, CNN did eventually post a story with a “CNN Staff” byline at 12:43 a.m. ET Wednesday, saying “NBA veteran Doc Rivers has accepted an offer from the Milwaukee Bucks to be the team’s next coach, a source with knowledge of the conversations told CNN.”

So, just to get all caught up, TNT’s “Inside the NBA” reported that “CNN Sports” reported that Doc Rivers has agreed to be the head coach of the Milwaukee Bucks, CNN confirmed the reporting, and then TNT’s own NBA insider refuted that report, which had just been confirmed on TNT.

Got it? No? Well, neither does TNT.

[Chris Haynes, AA on Twitter/TNT]

About Sean Keeley

Along with writing for Awful Announcing and The Comeback, Sean is the Editorial Strategy Director for Comeback Media. Previously, he created the Syracuse blog Troy Nunes Is An Absolute Magician and wrote 'How To Grow An Orange: The Right Way to Brainwash Your Child Into Rooting for Syracuse.' He has also written non-Syracuse-related things for SB Nation, Curbed, and other outlets. He currently lives in Seattle where he is complaining about bagels. Send tips/comments/complaints to