In Episode 73 of our In The Paint Show, co-hosts Ronnie Flores and Devin Ugland break down all things WNBA: the start of the season in the “Wubble” at IMG Academy in Florida, the risk-reward of playing the season out, the social justice issues that have caused some players to sit out, the financial impact of choosing to play and going overseas, and the media coverage of all the issues leading up to the opening tip. There is so much going on everyday we just had to get this episode out before anything else happens before the scheduled regular season start on July 25!
The fellas are joined by media member Adena Andrews (TrueHoop), former WNBA player and current overseas player Chelsea Hopkins and WNBA All-Star Tiffany Hayes. All three offer their unique perspective on the state of the WNBA season and the social issues surrounding it, the financial ramifications of COVID-19 on the women’s game and the reasons Hayes decided to sit the WNBA season out.
Andrews, who has covered the WNBA for over a decade for companies such as ESPN and Bleacher Report, breaks down the risk-reward factors of choosing to play this WNBA season and why WNBA players are not necessarily in a bigger financial pinch to participate than NBA players. She also gives some perspective of league superstar Maya Moore’s sacrifices to help an innocent man get his 50-year prison sentence over-turned.
Hopkins, an All-American at San Diego State whose played for five different WNBA franchises, give her take on the current situation with playing overseas this fall and winter, how COVID-19 has affected nearly every European country and many player’s decisions on their plans for the future. One of the teams Hopkins played for was the Atlanta Dream, and she gives her take on recent comments made by team co-owner Kelly Loeffler (who is also a Republican Senator in Georgia) about her opposition of pro-Black Lives Matter themes on the player’s jerseys.
Hayes, a WNBA All-Star and eight-year veteran and the Dream’s second all-time leading scorer, is one of the high-profile players who chose not to enter the WNBA bubble and sit out this 2020 season. Hayes gives her reasons for choosing to sit. Hayes, also gives her take on what two issues are most prevalent in the fight for social justice and her personal take on Moore, her former UConn teammate.