Just in case anyone else runs into a similar problem, I was looking at the wrong api urls to get what I needed.
I needed to be getting JSON from the topic data, rather than category or post. Most everything is working now.
Upon getting SSO working for wordpress and nodebb, I now cannot access my admin panel. Whenever I try to I get a "too many redirects" error. I'm essentially locked out now.
@CJ-Infantino you can disable plugins from the command line:
./nodebb reset -p nodebb-plugin-sso-wordpress