Let’s Talk Sports

The WNBA continues to face disparities. When will it end?

For a long time, WNBA players have been experiencing a great deal of “Would you rather” when it comes to improving player’s conditions. The unfairness of having to choose between a salary hike and a better lifestyle condition forfeits WNBA players of a true experience. 

Don’t you think? 

Since the creation of the WNBA by the NBA in 1996, there has been a great deal of disparity in pay and benefits. 

On March 1, the WNBA fined New York Liberty $500,000 for taking chartered flights last season. However, under the Collective Bargaining Agreement, charter flights are banned in order to maintain competitive balance.

Although there have been circumstances where the league paid for chartered flights, which was during the 2021 WNBA Finals, does not make a temporary exception worth it. 

You can say there have been an attempt to have chartered flights be the standard for all teams when the WNBA Board of Governors had a call in September, but the plan did not go through because it did not have majority support. 

The bigger picture in all of this is expecting professional women athletes to succumb to issues like travel accommodations and inconsistencies in ownership groups. The reason for chartered flights being banned is because some owners are willing and able to afford the flights and some owners are not. 

More wealthier and resourceful owners should be able to improve conditions for their players, all around. Owners who are not fit to provide the lifestyle for their players should rise to the expectation or put individuals in their place that can meet the expectation. 

WNBA players should feel that they are worth this investment and not so only this investment, but worth an increase in pay. Having an ounce of improvement in these areas would lead to long-term, sustainable growth. 

The WNBA needs more support from the NBA to help improve these conditions as well. Not just a sorrowful post to Instagram but a call to act. NBA can’t feel too much empathy for an issue they don’t experience. They are provided with jets and making 82 times more than WNBA players. 

In 2019, Los Angeles Sparks head coach and former NBA star, Derek Fisher, blasted the WNBA for unfair treatment of players. He took to Instagram to show players waiting for a train with their luggage after a win against the Minnesota Lynx. 

Fisher quoted the picture and said, “So after a hard-fought win on national television, the LA Sparks are right back to reality that these women are not being treated like the best athletes in the world.”

The WNBA continues to expose themselves and how they treat their players as second-class citizens. It’s no secret that they have reached the bottom of the barrel when it comes to providing a secure lifestyle for their players. 

In 2019, the reported average base salary for a WNBA player is about $78,000 a season. For a NBA player, the average is about $7.5 million. To hear this wage gap is nauseating. 

Oh, and let’s not forget how overseas basketball play a necessary part of living for a WNBA player. Due to the women’s season being much shorter than the NBA, WNBA players head over to Europe to make money and play at a top-level. 

It must be a gut-wrenching feeling that these WNBA players feel being away from their family and friends, adjusting to Europe’s culture and language, and playing with teammates they’re not familiar with. 

That’s called sacrifice. 

It’s hard enough being a woman but on top of that, you have to fight every day for equal treatment. That’s sounds like an extra job.

Imagine loving playing the game of basketball so much, that you get the opportunity to go pro and not only have to do your job on the court but fight to stay on the court to make ends meet at home.

But any woman interested in playing pro basketball should know the risks, right? No. Wrong. WNBA players don’t deserve this punishment. Women in sports, continue to take a hit and at what cost. 

The excrement that comes along with this job can be so harsh and unfair. It’s time for women in the WNBA to get their turn at all the perks that come along with hard work and dedication. 

Let’s take a moment and marinate on what can be done to move forward from the damage that has already been done. More owners should be invested in the WNBA and there should be more ways to expand their brand to make more salary wages. What business plan should be taken into effect that will allow WNBA players to get the salary they truly deserve? 

Brady near the end?

Tom Brady Shows Off 7 Super Bowl Rings: ‘How It’s Going’ https://www.instagram.com/p/CRrwtWxrJRP/

“All good things must come to an end.” Right?

We knew some day it would come to this, but who knew it would be so soon? Brady unparalleled talent has led to seven Super Bowl wins, which is the most championships won by a single player in NFL history. The allegations of Brady’s farewell have had many of his fans in a chokehold.

Was Brady health in question or was his time eventually coming to a close? Brady has given us 22 great seasons no matter the environment he was placed in. If we consider his age, Brady was still able to perform at an elite championship level. On the other hand, if he continued to play, what would be at cost? Considerably his health? or the possibility that he’ll be missing out on another ring?

Brady’s has a great track record for defying odds. Just before the New Year, Brady broke the record for becoming the all-time completions leader and continues to add to the pile of accolades in his unrelenting career.

We don’t know Brady’s retirement day but remembering Brady’s greatness would be undeniable when retirement day comes. His name will continue to reign supreme whether on or off the field.

Sooner or later, we will have to accept the inevitable..

Is Antonio Brown’s refusal to play forcing his fate or exposing his truth?

Antonio Brown has had numerous off-the-field issues, one including suspension for faking his vaccination card, but his recent actions, has costed him his seat with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Antonio Brown claims that the head coach of the Buccaneers, Bruce Arians, which some call “BA”, had wanted Antonio Brown to take the field but refused because of an injured ankle.

Coach Arians responded and said those allegations are not true and that he was told that there were no issues with Antonio Brown so he was clear to play. This lead many people confused as to why superstar Antonio Brown left the field. While sports fans had their assumptions as to why he left the field, he made sure to mention it wasn’t a result of lack of targets. He went deeper as far as taking shots at future hall of famer, Tom Brady.

Many believe Brown could be possibly telling the truth but others are sure he’s at fault due to his past experience with other teams. So, it could be easy to point out the fact that he’s automatically the problem. What if Brown is telling the truth? Do you think Brown is being criticized harshly for his past mistake? Are the Buccaneers trying to change the narrative to save face?

Can the Chicago Bulls conquer the Eastern Conference?

The Chicago Bulls last made the playoffs in 2017 when they lost the Eastern Conference First Round. Nevertheless, the last couple of seasons for the Bulls have been tough until now.

In this time span, the Bulls have acquired Zach LaVine, Nikola Vucevic, Lonzo Ball, DeMar DeRozan, and Alex Caruso. But will this roster be enough to dominate the Eastern Conference?

Since then, we’ve seen Zach LaVine and DeMar DeRozan average 27pts per game. Although we have seen this duo put in work, we have to acknowledge the bench rotation: Alex Caruso, Ayo Dosunmu and Javonte Green. These players have been vital as well, adding great energy and always producing.

The Bulls have made it through a challenging season, proving they can beat teams like the Bucks, Nets, and the Cavaliers.

The Bulls have secured all the tools (including players with great talent) needed to enter into the playoffs, but now it is time for them to put it all together and win.

Let’s see if the Bulls can control their own destiny and transfer their season momentum to the Eastern Conference.

Ex-Seahawks NFL player, Chad Wheeler, recently assaulted his black girlfriend. Where’s the media? Why isn’t this being talked about?

Last Monday, former NFL Seahawks player, Chad Wheeler, assaulted his girlfriend in their Washington State home. It was reported that Wheeler choked the victim until she was unconscious. What infuriated me more was when she became conscious, he stood over her and said, “Wow, you’re still alive.” This statement in itself showed his motive, and that was to kill her.

As I continued to read reports and news articles, it was expressed that Wheeler’s behavior was due to a “manic episode.” Why was I not surprised? It seems that when white people display inhumane behavior, the mental illness card is introduced. The victim stated that Wheeler has a bipolar disorder and have not been taking his medicine. Do you think that this statement will cause for Wheeler to receive more time in a mental institution than a jail cell? I believe so. There’s absolutely no reason for Wheeler to not be prosecuted to the full extent.

When this tragic incident took place, where was the media? Why didn’t the NFL make this a headline? Although Wheeler was released from the Seahawks and became a free agent, do you think they were indirectly stating that they don’t tolerate domestic violence?

But then again, there is a long lineage of domestic violence incidents in the NFL. In 2014, Ray Rice hit his fiancé and entered a pretrial intervention program in exchange for prosecutors to drop the charges. His consequences was a short-term suspension. Others like Adrian Peterson and Ray McDonald, suffered the same consequences. Their actions were based on if they violated the NFL personal conduct policy. Domestic abuse is domestic abuse. There shouldn’t be a rule book to determine how severe or mild a domestic abuse case is.

What domestic abuse incident will cause the NFL to prompt change in their justice system and uphold their players to a certain level of accountability?

If you know anyone who is a victim of domestic abuse or is experiencing life with an abusive partner, there is a hotline: 800-799-7233. We’re here for you and support you!

Chicago Basketball was a safe haven: How do you survive through a chaotic pandemic when basketball was all you had?

The COVID-19 pandemic prompted a lot of disturbance and disappointment when it caused Chicago basketball to come to a standstill.

On November 17, 2020, the Illinois High School Association announced that girls and boys basketball was on temporary pause, but as the coronavirus outbreak got worst, Chicago spring sports were officially cancelled.

Ultimately, where would that leave the athletes? Many athletes have been unable to play their respective sports while also limiting when and where they train. According to the Chicago Tribune, athletes are opting to transfer schools in states with less rigorous regulations.

This is just a preview of how athletes are adopting to these binding guidelines. The affect of COVID-19 weighs heavy on the senior athletes, especially. They will have a more difficult time obtaining college scholarships because it requires coaches to scout out their talent in person. As a result, college coaches are expecting to see a higher number of walk-ons, then rewarding a scholarship down the line.

But wait, there’s an even bigger affect of the COVID-19 pandemic that many don’t recognize. Now that these athletes aren’t playing sports, what can they do now to occupy their time? Chicago is a basketball city, so what else do you do when they only thing that keeps you from trouble is taken away?

During the pandemic, the violence in Chicago has spiked. According to WGN Chicago news, the city has seen a total of 3,033 shooting alone this year. In November 2020, 58 murders took place, producing two murders a day. Nine teens have have died in 2021. A total of 101 teens have lost their lives since COVID-19.

Is basketball an escape for youth in the Chicagoland area? What will be the result if there’s no basketball season this year? Will we have to continue to look at the rate of violence increase?

The Potential, New Big 3: Brooklyn style

After eight years of playing with the Houston Rockets, James Harden was traded to the Brooklyn Nets on Wednesday, joining Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant.

Although the Rockets lost their top player, let’s take a look at the bigger picture. According to ESPN, the Rockets were living in the James Harden era, which means they were cultivating a culture that empowered Harden to say and do whatever he wanted. Was it considered a good idea for an organization to give an “historically elite player” such leisure?

I believe that giving Harden such leeway allowed for such poor behavior. I also don’t believe it’s always a good to do business with a player to keep them happy, especially if the organization’s belief doesn’t align with the player’s.

Harden began missing practices and attending parties maskless, despite the NBA’s COVID-19 protocols. Harden showed the Rockets staff what it’ll look like if he didn’t get his way.

Harden got what he wanted but left the Rockets fighting to obtain their ultimate goal, winning a ring. However, Harden advanced the Rockets to the Western Conference finals twice.

Ultimately, Harden being traded would allow for more production of lottery draft picks and also allow the Rockets to break free from the shackles of Harden’s servitude.

Nobody knows the potential of the Brooklyn Nets, but they do have a target on their back to be a championship team.

It’s More than Sports: What are we(they) fighting for?

Credit: “How the halls of Congress were overtaken.” Youtube, uploaded by ABCNews, 7 January 2021, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hMdZcseQXdU

Many people believed Trump won the election against Joe Biden, mostly Trump himself. During his in denial period, Trump revealed on Twitter that there would be an anticipation of a huge gathering in Washington, D.C on January 6th, 2021, according to the New York Post. This was also the date that Joe Biden’s presidential win would be certified.

According to the New York Post, supporters of Donald Trump were already gathered around the Capitol at 6 a.m., Wednesday morning. At 1 p.m., Biden’s win was certified by lawmakers and by 1:10 p.m., rioters pulled down barriers, storming the walls of the Capitol complex.

Let’s reflect on what we witnessed on Wednesday. We seen white thugs storm the capitol, steal important documents, assault police officers, and threaten the safety of citizens, all while being able to go home safely and untouched. How many peaceful BLM protest have we had where BLACKS weren’t tear gassed, beaten, restrained with hand cuffs, or shot at?

When looting took place in multiple states, BLACK people were shot and killed. They were identified in videos and jailed. Yet, white people was able to loot the Capitol. Where was the tear gas? Where was the fired shots? Where was the blood shed? Where was the reciprocated treatment that BLACK people continuously receive?

That behavior that was exhibited in the videos and photos on Wednesday was barbaric. Let’s discuss how a white women was discretely shot for committing a treason but George Floyd’s death was exposed and shown to the world. When will the double standard be exposed? When will white people admit that racism still exist? When will we as BLACK people come to the brutalizing realization that this country was never ours. Considering the fact that this nation was built off of slavery and genocide, America is nothing but evil and was never ours.

Do you think America can stand as one, one day? I say we’re far from unity but who knows.

The Mecca of Basketball: Chicago breeds talent

Let’s begin to cogitate some of thee Chicago greats that were produced and in time, matriculated to success in the NBA. Disclaimer: I’m only naming a few but I know there’s more.

Here’s my list: Jabari Parker, Shannon Brown, Anthony Davis, Patrick Beverly, Doc Rivers, Derrick Rose, Isiah Thomas, Tim Hardaway, Maurice (Mo) Cheeks, and Tony Allen.

The long lineage of Chicago’s rich basketball history definitely reigns supreme. The talent pipeline that is birthed in Chicago, in my opinion, is homegrown. I don’t know many that participated in pick up games with some of the NBA players I listed above. No matter your size or age, in pick up games in Chicago, you play against everybody.

Of course other basketball fans can argue for their town as the Mecca of basketball but I believe Chicago stands above all. Can we argue that New York could be the Mecca? Of course. Los Angeles? Of course, but LA is the site of many trainings and homes during the off-season.

Chicago has put many hoopers in the league. On the other hand, there are facts that gives the Chi its Mecca status stated by the NBA.

  • In 1983, Chicago formed its first basketball league with a group of YMCA teams
  • The Harlem Globetrotters began on the Southside of Chicago in 1926 but originally known as the Savoy Big Five
  • 6’10 George Mikan, NBA’s “first superstar,” talent imposed rules to widen the lane.

Yes, there’s more facts but considering the facts mentioned, I would extend my opinion and say that Chicago is the Mecca. Oh…let’s not forget the mental toughness that comes with Chicago ball. Can you handle playing basketball to the point where it almost leads to a fight? Can you handle going into risky neighborhoods and experiencing a different style of play? Where I’m from, you either keep playing or you quit. Chicago produces more than players but that’s what make it special.

Also, think about this: NBA All-Star 2020 was hosted at the United Center in Chicago, don’t you think that’ll make Chicago more credible?

LiAngelo Ball’s uncertain future starts to look promising

On Wednesday, December 2, 2020, LiAngelo Ball signed a one-year, non-guaranteed contract with the Detroit Pistons. Before his introduction into the NBA, it’s safe to say that Ball had to maneuver throughout his professional basketball career after not being selected in the 2018 NBA draft.

Ball played professionally in Lithuania as a shooting guard, then played with the Los Angeles Ballers in his father’s Junior Basketball Association (JBA) league. Unlike Ball, his two brothers, Lonzo and LaMelo, had an undemanding course into the NBA.

As all three Ball brothers make an appearance next year in the NBA, I’m wondering…what type of impact will LiAngelo make while playing with the Pistons? Shooting ability? The way he runs the floor? What’s certain is that Ball will bring his competitive spirit and eagerness to win.

The Pistons are in the middle of rebuilding their organization and this would be an ideal spot for Ball to land. We start to see this rebuild with the Pistons NBA 2020 draft picks: Killian Hayes, Isaiah Stewart, Sadiqq Bey and Saben Lee.

Ball’s deal is the closest that the brothers have come to playing in the NBA together. This will be Ball’s shot to prove not only to himself but to the sports world that he belongs. If he does prove himself, what type of legacy will LiAngelo look to leave?

Should Jake Paul KO force Nate Robinson to stay in his own lane?

Saturday night, in the Jake Paul v. Nate Robinson fight, Paul put Robinson to sleep in a second-round knockout. Even though Robinson fell to his feet early in the fight, he shook it off and continued to will his way. In the end, Paul claimed his victory.

Paul is known for being a YouTube and Internet personality, but many people lacked the knowledge of Paul’s love for boxing training that made the difference in this fight.

On the other hand, Robinson, a retired basketball player, is an amateur to the boxing ring. He started training in August immediately calling Paul out. Should Robinson have kept his image of being known as a basketball player or should he’ve took the risk of being in the boxing ring and not knowing the outcome?

Many people may argue this was the best fight of the night, might even be bigger than the Mike Tyson v. Roy Jones Jr. fight. Maybe this fight will help others see Paul is serious about his boxing career and longs to meet others professionals in the ring.

In an interview, Paul stated that he’s confident he will knockout Connor McGregor. I think this fight provided Paul with much more conviction and reassurance that he belongs in this combat sport. Paul felt that every aspect of his life has been a fight. Could it be that boxing was a calling for Jake Paul?