The NBA off-season has always been a crazy time, with rumors about the NBA Draft, free agency and trades ceaselessy pinging around until mid-August. However, the NBA off-season since the advent of social media has been a whole different beast, with player’s Instagram follows to overanalyze, and social media posts to pick apart for some deeper meaning.
Los Angeles Lakers father-son frontcourt duo Ivica Zubac and Larry Nance, Jr. got in on the fun a few weeks ago, sending fans into a frenzy just by tweeting eyeball emojis that Zubac later revealed were about the new season of House of Cards (but really about having some fun messing with fans, probably).
Tuesday Miami HEAT wing Justise Winslow proved that it’s more than just Lakers players who can trigger a fan freak out when he posted a photo on Instagram of himself being guarded by D’Angelo Russell with the simple caption of “Loading...” (Russell’s signature term):
Russell added to the fire when he commented:
Is Russell telling Winslow to “hold on” because he’s learned the hard way that you shouldn’t leak things? No, it’s probably a reference to it being hard to guard Winslow, or something.
Does this mean Russell is definitely being traded to Miami, as much of Twitter seemed to assume? No. This probably has nothing to do with trades. Probably.
But what if it does? What if Justise Winslow is the new Woj? What if his Instagram is now the breaking source for all NBA trade news? I, for one, welcome our new scoop god.
Either that, or Russell and Winslow are sitting somewhere, laughing as they watch Twitter burn to the ground, which I imagine going something like this (DISCLAIMER THESE ARE NOT ACTUAL QUOTES):
“Hahahah good one, Justise. Now watch what happens when I comment,” Russell laughs.
“Oh my god, that is amazing! People are FREAKING OUT!” Winslow chuckles back.
“But you haven’t even seen the best part!” Russell responds. “Harrison Faigen is going to have to write a whole post about this! Can you believe that? Over one random Instagram! The summer is hilarious, man.”
Seriously though, this is probably nothing. Welcome to the off-season, if you haven’t been here before.