SBD/December 3, 2012/Media

Nets' Deron Williams Employs Personal Beat Writers; Website Sticks Out Among NBAers

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Williams or his reps at Excel Sports Management vet content before it goes live
Nets G Deron Williams “employs his own team” of beat writers to “spread the gospel of D-Will on his website, DeronWilliams.com,” according to Scott Cacciola of the WALL STREET JOURNAL. Operated by Athlete Interactive, the site has “Williams-centric game stories, Williams-centric features and Williams-centric photo galleries.” The site's editors “shoehorn ‘Williams’ or ‘D-Will’ into roughly 90% of their headlines.” DeronWilliams.com is “cutting edge.” Williams said of his writers, "They do a great job of making sure it's personalized." Williams and his reps at Excel Sports Management “get to vet everything that goes live on the site.” Launched “not long after the Jazz traded Williams to the Nets in 2011, it was originally conceived as a way to enhance his appeal to sponsors in a new market.” Excel VP/Marketing Jaymee Messler described it as "creating a larger brand portfolio" for Williams. Websites maintained by individual athletes, featuring “fresh material on an almost daily basis, are few and far between.” Williams is now the “rare NBA player who has his very own reporter at many of the team's home games.” The Nets have “credentialed Devon Jeffreys, the content coordinator for Athlete Interactive, as a member of the working press.” Cacciola: “Want Williams's take on last week's near-brawl in Boston? Curious about his recent appearance on NBC's ‘Late Night with Jimmy Fallon’? Looking for instructions on how to vote for Williams as an NBA All-Star? The site has you covered.” Athlete Interactive publishes online sites “for about 22 athletes, many of them Excel clients,” and DeronWilliams.com “ranks among the more comprehensive.” Magic G Arron Afflalo recently signed on with Athlete Interactive “to launch his own site, ArronAfflalo4.com.” Afflalo said, "It was an opportunity for me to -- how do I put it? -- control my exposure a little bit” (WALL STREET JOURNAL, 12/3).
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