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Texans Beat Reporter Fired After Defending Deshaun Watson

Longtime NFL reporter Aaron Wilson has been fired from the Houston Chronicle after defending Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson against multiple sexual assault charges, according to Diana Moskovitz and Kalyn Kahler of The Defector.

Wilson, who has covered the Texans since 2015, compared Watson’s accusers to terrorists during an appearance on “The Greg Hill Show” on WEEI radio last month.

“In his case, you know, it’s kind of you don’t negotiate with terrorists,” Wilson told Hill. “People are demanding money, they’re asking for money. It kept escalating, it kept going up and up and up. You’re talking about more and more funds, I’m not going to say how much it got to, but my understanding is, you know, that there was an admission that, it was, you know, something, you know just that this was, you know, just a money grab.”

Sources told The Defector that the Chronicle held a meeting Friday to address the move involving Wilson.

“During the meeting, which lasted about 10 to 15 minutes, the source says that Chronicle sports editor Reid Laymance told staffers that Wilson was no longer employed by the Chronicle,” the report read. “Laymance didn’t discuss any specifics regarding why Wilson was no longer employed, and he did not mention Wilson’s coverage of the lawsuits. He did tell reporters that they needed to be mindful of what they say on other platforms.”

Twenty-two women allege Watson harassed and assaulted them while receiving massages. Ashley Solis was the first massage therapist to sue Watson and publicly disclosed her identity earlier this week. A judge has ordered 13 of those accusers to identify themselves, as relayed by OutKick’s Megan Turner.

Prior to joining the Chronicle, Wilson covered The Baltimore Ravens for the Baltimore Sun from 2001-15. He has also served as a beat writer who covered the Jacksonville Jaguars, according to his bio on the Chronicle website.

Written by Sam Amico

Sam Amico spent 15 years covering the NBA for Sports Illustrated, FOX Sports and NBA.com, along with a few other spots, and currently runs his own basketball website on the side, FortyEightMinutes.com.

19 Comments

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  1. i heard sean salisbury talking watson on jason macintire’s radio for children today.

    he played QB a very long time and said he isn’t sure if he had 30 massages from 30 different people in his entire life. which includes vacations.

    what may be the ultimate stupidity is Watson paying for sex, but spending more on transportation and lodging, then the services. tip better dude.

  2. These women are terrorists? If you want to go crazy, call it “extortion” instead. But, here’s a tip, simply say, “There are a number of complaints being filed, and I’m sure we will have many more facts and details to come in the near future. Until then, let’s see how this plays out.” (These people just “cancel” themselves…)

    • he was on a fucking podcast and had an opinion on a fucking subject that has no truths yet

      good Fucking lord you m00ks are quick to cancel anyone you may not agree with

      I don’t know who the fuck this guy is and have never heard of him but you all are a bunch of hypocritical pussies just like the other side you complain about so much on this shitty wannabe political website

      I am embarrassed my political ideologies align with 95% of the dipshits I see commenting on this board

      • Awwwwww…Dragon’s diaper needs changing. The reporter could get sued by these women, moron. So could the Chronicle. You don’t equate them with terrorists. That’s the dipshit move. Meanwhile, continue to embarrass YOURSELF by flying off the handle. (Next “reply” should be an apology…)

      • Being a Trump supporter. I would think you’d be happier with reporters losing their jobs for stating opinions instead of covering the facts. He is not an opinion journalist, he was the reporter assigned to cover the team. The podcast had him on because he was the reporter assigned to the team. He stated as facts that these assault allegations erre all money grabs and that the women were just like terrorists. What fool would use “terrorists” to describe potential sexual assault victims? Like you said, no “truths” are known, so why are you defending a reporting spreading unknown “Truths”?

    • lol. Yeah bro, I love seeing people get fired.

      This fucking website is embarrassing. I was a Trump guy, and I am a staunch conservative, but I see the same shit from your dumbass complainers about “cancel culture” who LOVE cancel culture, and embrace everyone that gets cancelled just like the other side.

      Grow the fuck up.

      • Dragon – the only person who is being embarrassing is yourself. Nobody is cancelling Deshaun Watson except to call out the very obvious: no credible professional athlete uses Instagram as the primary means of getting massage appointments with fifty different masseuses unless he is getting extras. As a longtime attorney who had done criminal defense and also civil litigations, the allegations by these women are serious enough to warrant reasonable speculations that Dashaun Watson is either soliciting for sex or worse, thinking that he can solicit sex from women who are professional therapists. What Clay Travis and most commentators on the board have been writing is what any reasonable person (and jury) will think when they see the available allegations. Rusty Hardin can do his best to drag it out; but at best this is a he said, she said situation in which Watson will have a less than 50% chance in winning the case; good luck winning on all 22 lawsuits.

        • I wasn’t commenting on whether or not Deshaun Watson was innocent or guilty. I honestly do not care if he uses Instagram to solicit sex. I also wouldn’t care if he was doing a bunch of blow off hookers’ snatches, either.

          I am saying I don’t celebrate a beat writer getting fired for having an opinion on a subject. If he thinks these instagram masseuses are cash grab, money grubbing whores, and equates them to terrorists … perhaps that’s a bad take, but I also don’t give a shit.

          If his employer doesn’t like it and fires him, I also don’t give a shit.

          I also don’t participate in social media lynch mobs and celebrate people getting cancelled like the majority of the users on Outkick.com, who complain about snowflake libs, but end up just being snowflake lynch mobbers themselves.

          Embarrassing.

  3. If you are the defendant/respondent in a lawsuit, it can often feel like negotiation with terrorists, as the guy pointed out. It doesn’t mean it is extortion, but I’m sure it can feel like that to the accused – settle up or we go public. Ouch.

    From personal experience, once you find a good massage therapist, you don’t keep shopping around. A good one is like gold…you hope they don’t move or die!

    • I know nothing about massage therapists, but it sounds like they are what many of us look for in an auto mechanic: I’ve fortunately only had to have three in the past 35 years. They truly are like gold.

      This beat writer’s “terrorist” analogy seems absurd. Terrorists INITIATE violent contact; however, it sounds like these 30-100 women were contacted initially by the QB himself, at least according to his own lawyer.

      On the other hand, having watched the press conference with that woman reading her script about being a “survivor” seems somewhat absurd as well. Maybe I’ve watched and read “Schindler’s List” too many times, and being a survivor now has a new meaning which escapes me.

    • Settlement talk is negotiation, which requires skills and strategies. The fact that Deshawn Watson has Rustin Hardin, one of the very best attorneys in the country, defending him is enough evidence that the “terrorist” analogy is foolish. Still have to say Watson doesn’t have a great shot winning or settling ALL of the cases in his favor (he is the one digging his own grave), but has as good a shot as anyone because of Hardin.

  4. From the story linked…this is what I was looking for:

    ‘The email went on to remind staffers that they always represent the Chronicle during any media appearances, and must do so with the permission of a supervisor.

    “Facts are good. Analysis is OK. Opinion, speculation or baseless assertions are not. We won’t tolerate that sort of commentary,” Riley wrote, before closing by saying questions would be taken at a staff meeting. The email never mentions Wilson but multiple sources told Defector that they believed it was about Wilson, and specifically his radio appearance.’

    Reporters often don’t stay in their lane.

    • Now I want to see the Chronicle’s political coverage and gauge how much opinion and speculation gets embedded right there in the newspaper’s pages. Bet there are people gainfully employed there who are permitted to opine as far to the left, and in scrutiny of the right, as they like.

  5. He just used the wrong words. He was trying to over-emphasize that this is a money grab in his opinion based on what information he knows. Throw a disclaimer in like “I’ve never spoken to or seen anymore information from the accusers than what’s already been published. So my opinion is strictly based on the information I have”. Calling them terrorists was just a very poor choice of words. I think an attempt to apologize and clarify the term he used might have been sufficient punishment. That said, the Texans are already backed in a corner multiple ways. They probably felt they had no choice but to fire immediately.

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