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Who will catch The Wall Street Journal’s stars?

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Even before Rupert Murdoch declared his intentions, The Wall Street Journal was already a bit under siege. The paper is full of talent that other publications want, and greedy rival editors—from BusinessWeek, Forbes, Fortune, Portfolio, Newsweek, Time, the Times—are drawing up their lists of Journalistas to entice away. A speculative shopping list:

WSJ star: Marcus Brauchli
Job: New managing editor
Well liked and with huge biz experience in Asia, he’d be the big “get”—but he’s waited in the wings nearly a decade for the top job and could overlook a lot of meddling.
Chances (s)he’d go: 50 to 1

WSJ star: Laurie P. Cohen
Job: Senior special writer
Helped uncover the eighties “insider trading” scandal that lost Murdoch buddy Mike Milken his freedom. But she’s already left both the Times and Portfolio.
Chances (s)he’d go: 4 to 1

WSJ star: Bruce Orwall
Job: L.A. bureau chief
He’s rebuffed offers before, but he covers a key Murdoch business and edited the big story about his wife. Plus Brauchli just passed him over for a prestigious “Page One” gig.
Chances (s)he’d go: 1 to 2

WSJ star: Tunku Varadarajan
Job: Assistant managing editor
Formerly of the right-wing “Opinion” pages, he worked for Murdoch’s Times of London, but called him the “master practitioner of the corporate kowtow” at the WSJ.
Chances (s)he’d go: 1 to 1

WSJ star: Robert Frank
Job: “Luxury” reporter
Richistan author, covers yachts and hedge funds. Hard to see how Murdoch would affect him, though.
Chances (s)he’d go: 3 to 1

WSJ star: George Anders
Job: News editor
Maybe the WSJ’s “most prized” journo, he has a Pulitzer and best sellers. Favorite of ex-m.e. Paul Steiger, has lots of freedom.
Chances (s)he’d go: 4 to 1

WSJ star: Bill Grueskin
Job: Deputy managing editor of news
Recently raised to a key job after turning the online edition into a huge success. But may still be smarting from his bounce from “Page One.”
Chances (s)he’d go: 4 to 1

Have good intel? Send tips to intel@nymag.com.


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