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The WNBA: Yes, It Still Exists


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#31

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Posted Jul 15, 2007 @ 4:56 PM

Well that was pretty awesome! They came out on fire and it ended with a flourish. I loved the announcement the president of the WNBA made that ABC will be broadcasting their games until the year 2258. Okay, actually 2016, but will the league even last that long? I hope so, but with the Washington players begging the fans to re-show for their game on Wednesday...

But what was up with that little wimpy ass mvp 'trophy'? And a gift card from Discover?

Here's a hint, WNBA, show season highlights all throughout the game. Because likely many people haven't seen games all year. I saw one commercial and somebody did an incredible move going between the legs on the way to the hole and what looked like a 3-point play.

Holy mackerel, could Tina Thompson's child be any cuter? That baby was adorable!

Edited by Doom, Jul 15, 2007 @ 4:57 PM.

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#32

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Posted Jul 15, 2007 @ 5:22 PM

Well that was pretty awesome! They came out on fire and it ended with a flourish. I loved the announcement the president of the WNBA made that ABC will be broadcasting their games until the year 2258. Okay, actually 2016, but will the league even last that long? I hope so, but with the Washington players begging the fans to re-show for their game on Wednesday...

Official announcement of the new TV deal here. Definitely good news, but I'd love to see some numbers about how much the league is getting in the deal.
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#33

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Posted Jul 15, 2007 @ 5:34 PM

I don't think they're giving up any info. The president was all hush-hush about the markets they were trying to expand into. I'm like you need to expand into D.C., so the players can stop begging the fans to attend games. I keed, I keed.

So sucky that Sue Bird couldn't attend. She's basically my favorite player besides Ticha. The more I play, the more you see women on the court now. I love it. Because it used to be so rare to see "a girl" playing. I've seen ladies light guys up though. There are always some blocked shots but the ladies I've played with are completely unphased. The WNBA still isn't doing it marketing wise though. They really have to get that piece figured out. It's like they just can't really figure out what the unique draw is, to market it to people.
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#34

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Posted Aug 18, 2007 @ 9:44 PM

Last day of the regular season tomorrow (Sunday). All six games televised in one way or another, early game on ABC, the rest on NBATV and/or webcast via the website. Last playoff spot in the East is still up in the air. If Washington win in the early game, New York need to win three hours later to keep the fourth spot in the East; if Washington lose it's all done and New York are in regardless.

Playoffs start Thursday - Detroit-NY/Wash and Indiana-Connecticut in the East, Phoenix-Seattle and San Antonio-Sacramento in the West. Detroit ought to take care of whoever they end up with, but the other three could all get interesting.
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#35

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Posted Aug 20, 2007 @ 11:50 PM

I keep on trying to watch WNBA games, but the same problems keep coming up. Mainly bad shooting and, until Phoenix hired Paul Westhead, slow play all the way around. They need a Lindsay Lohan looking woman who can score 30 points a game and do 360 dunks, then clone her five or six times, or barring that find a way to have at least 10% of games have at least one team score 100.
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#36

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Posted Aug 21, 2007 @ 3:31 AM

The games are only 40 minutes long; if you prorate it, WNBA teams average about 92 points/48 minutes, compared to the NBA's 99. Doesn't say anything about the quality of play, but it's not ridiculously slower.. I suspect most of the difference is the shooting (the best shooting WNBA team is still worse than all but one of last year's NBA teams.)
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#37

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Posted Aug 21, 2007 @ 11:24 AM

I almost hate to bring it up, because it's something NBA fans who arbitrarily hate the WNBA frequently mention as a reason behind their dislike, but one of the main reasons for that 7-point difference is probably the lack of dunking. Watch any WNBA game and you'll see a bunch of missed layups, and while it drives me nuts that certain players seem incapable of ever making a freaking layup, often it's because they get bumped or nudged or whatever. In the NBA, several of those layup attempts would simply be dunks instead, as the player could elevate above the rim and put it in. Dunks have a 90+% chance of success, while layups are much lower when they're contested.

Also, it was only last season that the league switched to the 24-second shot-clock (rather than 30-second), so that's sped things up and increased scoring. Improving the refereeing would help the quality of play considerably as well.

Edited by Richyyy, Aug 21, 2007 @ 11:25 AM.

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#38

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Posted Aug 22, 2007 @ 8:53 AM

They need a Lindsay Lohan looking woman who can score 30 points a game and do 360 dunks


Don't we all?

Those humans, by and large, just don't exist.

Swoopes was known as the female Jordan at Texas Tech. She's a hell of a player, and I've interviewed her, she's very, very, very nice and very cool and smart and I think she's very attractive. But she doesn't move the needle.

Sue Bird's a terrific player and very attractive. I don't know that she moves the needle.

Lauren Jackson looks attractive sometimes when she's photographed right, but most of the time she looks like a jock - which is fine, but she's not going to attract the male demo you're alluding to (even when they find her nudes online).

Lisa Leslie's game can be, at times, the most recognizable to male fans as what they're used to - she plays big, and she's stylish and (YMMV) attractive. I'm not sure she moves the needle, either, though.

Looking ahead, Candace Parker is a really, really, really good player. I don't mean this to be sexist, either, but she plays in a style that male fans would recognize as being close to what some NBA players do, too. And she's very smart and a great kid (I've interviewed her, too) from a great family. She's going to be a big asset to whatever WNBA team gets her. But I'm not sure she can move the needle, either.

I just don't think "the" WNBA player you're alluding to exists. There's no Beckham-type to raise the league out of its niche status and make it worthy of even lookie-loo status like MLS has at the moment (however temporarily).

I'm a big believer that niche sports should play to that niche, and do it strongly. If the niche isn't big enough, then you're toast. But if the WNBA and MLS are looking for mainstream acceptance, I'm not sure that's ever going to happen. Which doesn't mean they can't survive and even thrive - it's a matter of playing to that niche.
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#39

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Posted Aug 22, 2007 @ 12:17 PM

I don't know if you necessarily need a drop-dead gorgeous player to 'move the needle'. The league and sponsors just need to do a better job of promoting players in the right way. For example, I think it would be fair to say Taurasi, coming out of college, was a mainstream sports star. She is not conventionally pretty...cute yes, but not Sue Bird. The problem is, besides from the inane WNBA commercials, Taurasi isn't in any other marketing campaigns. I would love to see Nike or Gatorade push her into the forefront, similar to how they marketed Mia Hamm. The only time I ever hear my local sports shows mention the WNBA is when Taurasi comes to town, so she definitely has drawing power. As for shooting, for some accursed reason, televised games always feature horrible shooting. I attend NBA and WNBA games on a regular basis, and would say perimeter shooting for both leagues is basically the same, with the edge going to the women on consistency of jumpers. As someone mentioned, the problem is the blown layups.

Anyway, I'm very excited for the Seattle/PHX series. I hope it goes to a game 3 with Seattle winning out.

My other predictions:

Monarchs/SA--I don't particularly care for either team, but I think SA in 2. Sacramento hasn't impressed me all year. They're lucky the rest of the western conference teams had abysmal years.

Conn/Indiana--Really depends on whether or not Catchings is back, but I would say Conn in 3.

Detroit/NY--This series can get very ugly. Detroit in 2 easily, I just hope it's not too lopsided.

ETA: Egads! I just looked at their record and what happened to the Comets this year?

Edited by pmiller5, Aug 22, 2007 @ 12:31 PM.

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#40

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Posted Aug 22, 2007 @ 12:36 PM

I don't know if you necessarily need a drop-dead gorgeous player to 'move the needle'. The league and sponsors just need to do a better job of promoting players in the right way. For example, I think it would be fair to say Taurasi, coming out of college, was a mainstream sports star. She is not conventionally pretty...cute yes, but not Sue Bird.


Double-edged sword. If she's drop-dead gorgeous, she's not taken seriously as a player (or is only a very good player, a la Kournikova). If she's a serious baller, there will always be those men who consider her butch.

And, like I said, the ones that have serious game and are really attractive aren't that numerous - and like you said, they aren't really marketed all that well.

I think the WNBA is skittish about playing the whole sexuality card, especially seeing as how they skirt (no pun intended) that line between feminine beauty, athleticism and sexual preference.
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#41

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Posted Aug 22, 2007 @ 12:48 PM

ETA: Egads! I just looked at their record and what happened to the Comets this year?

Swoopes was injured essentially the entire year (and might be done completely), Michelle Snow did her standard disappearing act, and they had no backcourt whatsoever. Tina Thompson was their only consistent presence all year and that wasn't even close to being enough.

They took JUCO project Ashley Shields with the 8th overall pick in the draft (when they almost certainly could've had her in the second or third round) and it was downhill from there. Shields ended up rooted to the bench for most of the season, and until they re-signed Tameka Dixon after their season was already pretty much over the Comets were just desperately trying to paper over the cracks on the perimeter all year long.

And I second pmiller5's endorsement of the Seattle-Phoenix series - if you wanna see scoring, these are two of the best scoring teams in the league, and two of the worst defences. The Storm also tend to see Phoenix's running style as a challenge and run right back at them, rather than trying to slow them down. Also, Taurasi, Jackson and Bird are all great mates, so you may get the bizarre sight of players throwing elbows or talking trash at each other... and then dissolving into giggles :).
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#42

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Posted Aug 22, 2007 @ 5:01 PM

The fact that you know these things confuses and frightens me. :)
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#43

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Posted Aug 22, 2007 @ 6:18 PM

Sue Bird's a terrific player and very attractive. I don't know that she moves the needle.

Heresy. And hey, what about Deanna Nolan? She looks good (she not drop dead gorgeous, but hey) and she's got a prettier (and more accurate) jumper than me. And she's cranking.

Who needs looks when she can drive baseline and do a double pump reverse? I haven't seen her play in a while, but Sue is... well just don't ever say that again about my basketball wife ;)
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#44

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Posted Aug 22, 2007 @ 6:38 PM

Double-edged sword. If she's drop-dead gorgeous, she's not taken seriously as a player (or is only a very good player, a la Kournikova). If she's a serious baller, there will always be those men who consider her butch.

And, like I said, the ones that have serious game and are really attractive aren't that numerous - and like you said, they aren't really marketed all that well.

I don't think there's a double-edged sword if the right player or marketing campaign comes along, and again I would reference Hamm or Sharapova. WNBA has numerous attractive players who are also very good players--Swin Cash, Hammon, Catchings, Cheryl Ford, etc..., but the league suffers from horrible marketing. I think something more subtle than the 'This is Who I Am' campaign from a few years back, where the players dressed up in pretty clothes and wore too much makeup, would be effective.

Swoopes was injured essentially the entire year (and might be done completely), Michelle Snow did her standard disappearing act, and they had no backcourt whatsoever. Tina Thompson was their only consistent presence all year and that wasn't even close to being enough.

They took JUCO project Ashley Shields with the 8th overall pick in the draft (when they almost certainly could've had her in the second or third round) and it was downhill from there. Shields ended up rooted to the bench for most of the season, and until they re-signed Tameka Dixon after their season was already pretty much over the Comets were just desperately trying to paper over the cracks on the perimeter all year long.

Thanks for the info, Richyyy. Snow has always been a headcase, and I don't know why the Comets drafted Shields over Latta, who might be short, but was also a proven talent in college against elite competition. She's doing rather well in Detroit too. As annoying as Laimbeer is, I must admit, the man brings out the best in his players.

Also, Taurasi, Jackson and Bird are all great mates, so you may get the bizarre sight of players throwing elbows or talking trash at each other... and then dissolving into giggles :).

Has anyone followed Bird and Taurasi's blog this year? I haven't read all of the entries, but what I've read is entertaining as hell. The league should consult these two on effective marketing campaigns. As for the matchup, I would have preferred seeing it as a Western Conference final instead. Too bad Seattle was so inconsistent and injury-plagued this year.

She looks good (she not drop dead gorgeous, but hey) and she's got a prettier (and more accurate) jumper than me. And she's cranking.

Wow, can Nolan dunk!? Is she even 6ft?

Edited by pmiller5, Aug 22, 2007 @ 6:40 PM.

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#45

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Posted Aug 22, 2007 @ 8:20 PM

Yes, Sue Bird rocks.

And yet, Seattle's per-game attendance dropped from 8,568 a game last year to 7,974 this year. That's what I mean by moving the needle.
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#46

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Posted Aug 22, 2007 @ 8:56 PM

Seattle's attendance dropped because there's a relocation issue looming over the team, and many Seattle fans are disillusioned about new ownership, as well as arena issues. The Storm's inconsistent season didn't help the matter, but I don't think a decline in attendance can be attributed to Bird, unless fans stayed away because she played injured during the first half of the season, resulting in a drop in her stats. Even during a down year, she still managed to pull in the most ASG votes, though I know there were accusations of ballot stuffing from Seattle fans. I'm not saying this means she's capable of 'moving the needle'. It would be interesting to see stats on televised game ratings, as in which teams draw the most fans. I know there was a small Taurasi effect her rookie year, where every televised Phoenix game resulted in an audience increase of....I don't remember the exact numbers, but maybe 30%? You know what team is doing really well in terms of attendance and working themselves into the local sports scene? Connecticut Sun. Silly name, I know, but so far, they've been a model franchise. Believe me, I live in the area, and the news coverage is top notch, possibly the best in the league with Seattle.

Edited by pmiller5, Aug 22, 2007 @ 8:58 PM.

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#47

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Posted Aug 22, 2007 @ 11:01 PM

The fact that you know these things confuses and frightens me. :)

Hey, every league and every sport has its fans and followers. Now the fact that I live in the UK and know these things might be a little surprising... ;)

Thanks for the info, Richyyy. Snow has always been a headcase, and I don't know why the Comets drafted Shields over Latta, who might be short, but was also a proven talent in college against elite competition.

Considering their desperate need for a point guard (which pretty much still exists although they found some vaguely serviceable options by the end of the year), they really should've taken Latta. No one much expected her to fall as far as she did though, so maybe Houston weren't really prepared for it. The whole organisation's basically been in turmoil since they were sold by the Rockets' owner before this season.

Latta's done alright in very limited minutes on a loaded Detroit team, but not really shown much except an ability to jack lots of threes and play pretty poor defence. Still would've been an upgrade for the Comets though.

Wow, can Nolan dunk!? Is she even 6ft?


Not really, is the answer to the first question. She's tried in a couple of All-Star games and come up just short, even when the other team actively cleared out of her way. She's got a phenomenal vertical jump though, to go with what's become a very good all-around game.

You know what team is doing really well in terms of attendance and working themselves into the local sports scene? Connecticut Sun. Silly name, I know, but so far, they've been a model franchise.


Connecticut are doing realy well, but what they also have is a near-unique ownership situation. The casino doesn't mind losing a little money on the team or at best breaking even because it generates publicity and creates a family atmosphere and reputation around the casino. It also obviously brings in people who populate their stores, restaurants, slot machines and gaming tables before and after all the games.

As for the ongoing debate about advertising the league, I think the league has always been confused about how to go about it. The traditional sports fan is a straight white guy, probably middle-aged, who drinks beer and likes hot chicks. The next biggest group after 'white male' is 'black male' before you get anywhere near a female group. But these people are generally not interested in the league - so do you try hard to get them interested, or do you go after other groups like women, the gay community etc. who aren't typically interested in sports in general?

As for using the attractiveness of the players to gain publicity, that's always been an awkward area as well. Push it too far and they get criticised for selling how hot their players are, ignoring their talents as athletes and 'demeaning' their stars by treating them as sex-objects. Don't use their stars' attractiveness to sell the league and they get criticised for not using a valuable resource to sell the league.
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#48

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Posted Aug 23, 2007 @ 12:35 AM

Hey, every league and every sport has its fans and followers. Now the fact that I live in the UK and know these things might be a little surprising... ;)

That is surprising. I didn't know women's basketball even registered on the UK radar. I'm from Australia and attended university in CT, hence my WNBA allegiance, what's your excuse? ;)

Connecticut are doing realy well, but what they also have is a near-unique ownership situation. The casino doesn't mind losing a little money on the team or at best breaking even because it generates publicity and creates a family atmosphere and reputation around the casino. It also obviously brings in people who populate their stores, restaurants, slot machines and gaming tables before and after all the games.

Considering this is their 5th year in existence, I think the growth has been very commendable. Each year they have slowly accrued more fans and have managed to distinguish themselves from the rabid UConn following. It doesn't hurt that CT has nothing else going for it at this time of year, and there are at least 3 very good newspapers following every home game. But where I think the ownership has really excelled is making games very fan friendly. The arena is an ideal size, there are all kinds of great promotions, and players are always visible in the community. You're right though, it is a unique situation. A move towards independent ownership seems to be inevitable and will probably be better for the league in the long run. Houston doesn't count as it seems Hilton wasn't the best candidate for ownership. I'm hoping the evil OKC guys relinquish Seattle to local buyers because it would be a shame if the league lost that market. Still not sure if expansion is a good idea at the moment, though TN would be an interesting market.

As for using the attractiveness of the players to gain publicity, that's always been an awkward area as well. Push it too far and they get criticised for selling how hot their players are, ignoring their talents as athletes and 'demeaning' their stars by treating them as sex-objects. Don't use their stars' attractiveness to sell the league and they get criticised for not using a valuable resource to sell the league.

There's a way you can showcase an athlete's attractiveness without being horribly blatant about it. For example, Gatorade commercials featuring a bikini clad Kerri Walsh with Gatorade sweat beads glistening off her body are not offensive to me. She's sexy in a strong, athletic way that even beer swilling white guys can appreciate. In contrast, some of the past WNBA campaigns are embarrassing in their attempts to push the players' femininity upon us. The clothes...the makeup...the cheesy backgrounds...it's all too, too much. Thankfully, the league seems to be moving away from that direction under Oreander. Unfortunately, the officiating seems to have gotten worse.

One more thing, whilst we're on the subject of PGs in the league. Why is it that there's always such a shortage of them? How many elite PGs are there...off the top of my head: Bird, Hammon, Whalen, Kelly Miller, maybe Tully and Penicheiro, and then....? Poor Bird hasn't had a decent backup since Tully left and Houston hasn't found a good one since Perot.

Anyway, I'm really not looking forward to the WNBA commentary this week. Doris Burke is good, but the rest of ESPN/ABC's crew should go away. Well, maybe not Rebecca Lobo, I can't slight a UConn legend.

Edited by pmiller5, Aug 23, 2007 @ 12:46 AM.

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#49

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Posted Aug 23, 2007 @ 12:45 AM

In contrast, some of the past WNBA campaigns are embarrassing in their attempts to push the players' femininity upon us.


Especially when some of them are just so...not feminine. At all.
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#50

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Posted Aug 23, 2007 @ 12:50 AM

Especially when some of them are just so...not feminine. At all.

No mate, they push those girls into the attic for commercial campaigns. They're only allowed back out during All-Star game 'glamour' photos, but that's only because their absence would be too glaring. I thank God Leslie was knocked up this year and we weren't all subjected to one of her model/Kentucky Derby winner poses.
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#51

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Posted Aug 23, 2007 @ 6:26 PM

I keep on trying to watch WNBA games, but the same problems keep coming up. Mainly bad shooting and, until Phoenix hired Paul Westhead, slow play all the way around.


No doubt the play is slow, but I chalk some of that up to inconsistent officiating. Some games the refs will allow really physical play that almost borders on dangerous, but other games they're calling a foul if a player breathes on another player funny. It's really frustrating to the players AND the fans when there's no consistent flow of the game. I hate to pin a lot on officiating because I think teams have to just rise above that, but I have seen some horrendous refs this season.

Embracing niche marketing seems to be the way to go. As a season ticket holder with the Mystics, I got to fill out a survey from the league and one of the questions asked was along the lines of if you ran the WNBA, what would you do to better market it? I can only speak to the segment of the population with which I'm familiar - the gays - but I said I wished the league, or at least individual markets, wouldn't be so afraid of attracting GLBT(ok, LESBIAN) fans. I'm not saying they need to make it a high profile marketing ploy or make a game "Gay Night", but they should definitely send out account reps from the teams to Pride events, GLBT sports league tournaments, bars, etc... Throw the gays a bone, and we'll generally appreciate and show some loyalty. I know the Sparks a few years ago did a thing with a lesbian bar, but there needs to be more to it than that. I don't know - I'm already there, but that's because I love basketball, so I don't really know how to sell people on it.

I'm waiting for the Fever vs. Sun game now, but the Little League World Series is on. Grr. And the announcer for the LLWS just said they'll be staying with this game until it's over, but will keep us posted on the score. Thanks, guys.
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#52

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Posted Aug 23, 2007 @ 9:30 PM

So so annoyed at ESPN right now.

That was a great game. Triple overtime. Players hitting incredible shots, both on the perimeter and driving. Injured players playing, crazy calls, Deforge going inSANE!

And the announcers were the crappiest they could possibly have been. Not only was the game not even shown for a while for little league of all things, but then when I tuned in with 5 minutes left, the announcers did an absolutely horrible job.

That game was perhaps the greatest game in WNBA history - triple overtime playoff game and the level of play did not diminish!

But the announcers were deadpan through most of it. When Deforge scored 10 straight points. When she kept hitting pullups, fadeaways, 3-pointers, they just commented or mentioned how it was a lapse in the defense. NO gravity whatsoever in their commentary. No sense of place or time. The ladies that played tonight were supremely disrespected by ESPN and their crappy announcing.

And if that wasn't bad enough, they kept hyping the f"#@%ing soccer game and acting like oh ho hum, who cares about this triple overtime game. Seriously, it was ridiculous.

Just don't broadcast the games, ESPN. I hate you. There was a great moment when one of the Sun missed a wide open 3-pointer in the second overtime. She then pulled her headband over her eyes and stood at the 3-point line and then ripped it off and threw it down. Great, funny, classic moment, and the announcers barely even noticed.

I hate you.

No fire, no passion. Deforge was just nailing shots from everywhere. It was spine-tingling. You wanted to hear "Deforrrrge.... AGAIN!...Wow!" But the announcers (Rebecca Lobo and somebody) were pretty dead about it. There'd be long periods (5, 10 seconds) in the overtimes where the announcers weren't even saying anything. They were just sitting there. Whalen did two spectacular drives, one holding the ball out and double pumping, the other between two defenders that had to be 3 times her height. It was just amazing. And there sat the dumb announcers, like they were watching paint dry. Infuriating.

I hate you.

Whitmore was hitting threes and then driving the lane and just throwing up insanity in between a 7-2 player and others, and making it. It was legitimately one of the greatest, if not the greatest games in WNBA history, and I wish I could slap the announcers silly, for being freaking sedated.

Ugh!
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#53

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Posted Aug 23, 2007 @ 10:41 PM

There are some good points made by everybody here. I think if the league expands(which they shouldn't) they should put it in smaller markets or places that have good women college basketball followings. Tennesee would be my first choice. If they can get the Palestra, I think Philadelphia would work too. They should market to anybody who would be susceptive to watching the WNBA and use any means they have to to get people interested, including sexuality. And they definitely need better officiating like every other league.
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#54

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Posted Aug 23, 2007 @ 10:57 PM

The officiating is abysmal in the WNBA in general. These are largely speaking the refs that aren't good enough to make the jump up to the NBA, and even some of the best college refs aren't working in the WNBA because the pay isn't great so they take the summer off instead. It directly affects the quality of the product, because the entertainment suffers when the refs are quite so poor.

What the league really needs in any markets it expands to is committed ownership, who are going to stick with the team and have the finance to support it. Some towns where women's college ball is popular aren't necessarily hotbeds for professional ball - Philadelphia, for example, drew pretty poorly when they had an ABL team even with Dawn Staley on the roster. Tennessee does seem like an obvious option, but presumably an owner has never come forward with enough backing to put a team there. (The most likely looking expansion city right now is Colorado, by the way, purely because of the ownership that's in place.)

Doom, you might want to try the live audio streams available from the official website (or via the second post here). I was listening to the Indiana feed and they were pretty amped during that insane triple-overtime game :).

Edited by Richyyy, Aug 23, 2007 @ 10:59 PM.

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#55

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Posted Aug 23, 2007 @ 11:15 PM

So I just got home and haven't watched my tivoed match yet, but completely spoilt everything by checking the scores and reading this thread. Thanks for the warning, Doom. I'll make sure to mute the broadcast. Who was commentating? I think you mentioned Lobo, and I have noticed she usually is a bit more subdued during CT games. My hypothesis is as a CT legend and former Sun player, Rebecca doesn't want to come off as biased; the fact that she's a bit monotoned doesn't help. I'm surprised Doris wasn't on duty. And THANK YOU so much for mentioning the little league interruption as I would have surely screamed and woken my boyfriend had I made the discovery myself.

Just don't broadcast the games, ESPN. I hate you. There was a great moment when one of the Sun missed a wide open 3-pointer in the second overtime. She then pulled her headband over her eyes and stood at the 3-point line and then ripped it off and threw it down. Great, funny, classic moment, and the announcers barely even noticed

That's probably Douglas. She's prone to tantrums, as is her husband who was recently ejected from a game.

It was legitimately one of the greatest, if not the greatest games in WNBA history, and I wish I could slap the announcers silly, for being freaking sedated.

Surely, it couldn't be better than the PHX/Houston triple OT match from last year when Taurasi poured in 47? Oh and Sacramento just kicked SA's arses tonight. There goes my prediction. What the hell happened?

I just noticed Sir Charles Barkley was in attendance for the CT game? Did he stay til the bitter end or do the predictable NBA/former NBA player thing by leaving at halftime? Anyway, off to watch my recording.

Edited by pmiller5, Aug 23, 2007 @ 11:36 PM.

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#56

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Posted Aug 24, 2007 @ 7:48 AM

I think that was Beth Mowins, she does a lot of WNBA games.

And she's not that great a listen.

I did watch the end of that game (I was actually waiting for the soccer game). It was terrific. I didn't even know Rebecca Lobo was doing color, I don't think I heard her say anything at all, and if I did, I couldn't tell it was her.

My hypothesis is as a CT legend and former Sun player, Rebecca doesn't want to come off as biased


My hypothesis is that she's not a very skilled broadcaster, and she's only there because she's a recognizable name.

What the league really needs in any markets it expands to is committed ownership, who are going to stick with the team and have the finance to support it.


Considering the originally-mandated NBA ownership went out the window a few years back and some NBA teams divested themselves of their distaff versions, those who decided to stick it out (some private owners, like Connecticut and now LA) would seem to me to be pretty "committed ownership."

I was listening to the Indiana feed and they were pretty amped during that insane triple-overtime game :).


Buddy of mine does the Fever (and the Pacers). Good guy. Good stuff.

Not only was the game not even shown for a while for little league of all things


That's kind of a whine, innit? I mean, I'm a soccer fan and I'm not whining that the Galaxy/Chivas game wasn't shown for a little while "for the WNBA of all things."

It happens. Events run long. ESPN has so many properties that they tend to overlap, especially in the case of an unprecedented three-OT playoff basketball game. Their policy is they stay with the game in progress and switch afterwards. It's unfortunate when it happens to the game you want to watch, but that's reality.

And if that wasn't bad enough, they kept hyping the f"#@%ing soccer game


They were courteous enough to at least let those tuning in for the soccer game that it was coming up right after the f"#@%ing WNBA game. Just sayin', you're on one side - there are people on the other side who felt exactly the opposite of what you felt.

No fire, no passion. Deforge was just nailing shots from everywhere. It was spine-tingling.


Okay, now you've gone too far. It was a WNBA first-round playoff game on a Thursday night in late August. It wasn't Gar Heard in the Boston Garden.

Of course, that's just my opinion. I could be wrong.
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#57

Doom

Doom

    Stalker

Posted Aug 24, 2007 @ 8:13 AM

Well basically you know how Tom Jackson and Boomer used to be like "Primetime...priimetime...primetime!" when Neon Deion was running back a td, whether it was game 2 or the playoffs? The announcers didn't even approach that. It was a great game with lousy announcing.

As far as the soccer thing, I thought it was kind of going too far to put the score in the upper right hand corner, and just leave it there. Soccer is fine and has a global audience and people are drooling all over stupid Beckham, I get that. But the game was triple overtime. Triple overtime in any adult sport is notable.

As for little league, they're children. If you had to stay in your garage until the next time a high school baseball game pre-empted the NBA, You'd turn into a naked mole rat.

I guess it's not a capital case, because the league will fold in the end, but still, these ladies have been disrespected before and it kind of annoyed me. Just another thing that diminishes the accomplishments of women and hypes men. And I'm a guy saying that.
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#58

flg8or

flg8or

    Couch Potato

Posted Aug 24, 2007 @ 10:46 AM

As far as the soccer thing, I thought it was kind of going too far to put the score in the upper right hand corner, and just leave it there. Soccer is fine and has a global audience and people are drooling all over stupid Beckham, I get that. But the game was triple overtime. Triple overtime in any adult sport is notable.


I'm just saying - there are those, probably many of those, who would say, "It's a fricking WNBA game? Who cares?" Note that I'm specifically not saying that because I have enough trouble enduring the slings and arrows of people who think soccer is a sissy sport. But you think triple overtime in any adult sport is notable and there are those who would say "It's only a bunch of (pejorative towards someone's sexual orientation), who cares?"

I'm all in favor of the WNBA. Just sayin' there's another side to what you're saying.

As for little league, they're children. If you had to stay in your garage until the next time a high school baseball game pre-empted the NBA, You'd turn into a naked mole rat.


Little League World Series ratings kick the WNBA's ass (and MLS' ass, for that matter). They may be children, but people watch. They'd put ferret racing on ESPN if it would make them money. Ours is not to judge the relative merits of one sport versus another. I find golf on television to be incredibly tedious, but I recognize there are lots of people who play it who like to watch and others who can't get enough of Tiger.

I guess it's not a capital case, because the league will fold in the end, but still, these ladies have been disrespected before and it kind of annoyed me.


They've done well to stick around for 11 years now. I don't know when "the end" is, but I don't think it's right around the corner.

And I think you're making too much of the "disrespect" thing. When you draw over 9,000 a game as a league and get good TV ratings and your players make lots of money and are instantly recognizable, you can gripe about not getting enough respect.

And announcers in most sports (especially niche sports) aren't up to snuff in the eyes and ears of most of the fans (else this forum wouldn't exist). It's a big talent pool, but there ain't a lot of talent in the pool, we always say.

Just another thing that diminishes the accomplishments of women and hypes men. And I'm a guy saying that.


Well there's that, but I'll give you the example of the 1999 Women's World Cup. Has there been anything like that going the other way that you can think of? How big was that hype for about a month? And American women's soccer is held in higher regard by the general populace (especially that particular team) because it wins World Cups (admittedly in a much easier universe than the men live in).

Not to get into a big equality rant, because I'm all in favor of that and you're never going to change the attitudes of a lot of dinosaurs, but the free market decides a lot of this stuff.
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#59

Richyyy

Richyyy

    Fanatic

Posted Aug 24, 2007 @ 11:59 AM

I pretty much agree with flg8or's view on the WNBA delay. You can't really blame ESPN for sticking with the Little League game when people watch the LLWS in their millions, even if it was Taiwan-Japan. However, what was ridiculous was that ESPN had at least two other channels showing basically nothing (pure old filler material), and yet it took them until half-time in the WNBA game to switch either of their live-events to one of the other channels. That they deserve plenty of criticism for. And I'd see updating MLS fans on the Galaxy game as a basic courtesy when you're cutting into their coverage.

What the league really needs in any markets it expands to is committed ownership, who are going to stick with the team and have the finance to support it.


Considering the originally-mandated NBA ownership went out the window a few years back and some NBA teams divested themselves of their distaff versions, those who decided to stick it out (some private owners, like Connecticut and now LA) would seem to me to be pretty "committed ownership."


What I meant by that was any new city they expand to, or any new group a team is sold to, need to be a 'committed ownership' group with proper financial backing. We saw two more teams sold in the last off-season by NBA teams that were talked into owning teams by Stern in the first place, and the Houston situation is already reportedly on shaky ground because the new owner doesn't really know what he's doing and doesn't have that much cash (relatively speaking). Owners need to be able to stick it out through the difficult times (like the rebuilding Houston are going through, or the hideous attendances Chicago have put up in their first two years) or teams will be constantly moving or folding and that's not good for the general health of the league.
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#60

Doom

Doom

    Stalker

Posted Aug 24, 2007 @ 1:13 PM

I think it's a chain. From the start, they haven't gotten much respect. ESPN showed the highlights late in sportscenter or not at all. The league was marketed poorly. The ladies were already not getting respect and then you have them getting bumped out of playoff games for American Idol. The local networks likely followed suit from ESPN's lack of highlights and coverage, and mirrored it.

These are grown women. Of course, any spectre of "gayness" gets them even more disrespect from many religious types, and the viewership suffers and then magically ESPN is okay to treat them even more like dirt as a result.

All this of course is completely missing that hitting 10 points in a row in like 120 seconds without missing is amazing. What I'm saying is these women, our sisters, our mothers, our daughters, are doing things comparable to those nba highlight reels I have comitted to memory. And while I'm not all that smart, I'm smart enough to know that this is an extension of the larger societal trend that has resulted in the wage gap, homemaking being seen as nothing, the second shift and other, similar situations. It's been going on for centuries. This is just the latest iteration. There are too many things that happened for me to give a random excuse and let ESPN and others, off the hook. You're obviously quite free to though :)
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