I was, without a doubt, late to the party. There’s probably no other instance where the saying, ‘better late than never,’ has ever been more applicable.
Because if I never showed up, I wouldn’t be explaining why and how the WNBA has won me over in so many ways. I never watched or even paid attention to the WNBA until a couple of years ago (even when I played college basketball myself). Following the WNBA has made me realize I love the game for all that it is—and isn’t.
If you need hard proof, I wrote a 100+ page master’s thesis on the coverage of the 2016 WNBA Playoffs and Finals. I’m intrigued by the growth the WNBA has made and the direction it’s headed. I’m fascinated by how the players can so powerfully influence young girls and women in sports. I’m intrigued by the way the players carry themselves on and off the court.
I shook hands and held a genuine conversation with Elena Delle Donne at a Character Counts event in Des Moines, Iowa a couple of months ago. I’ve interviewed Pokey Chatman over the phone, and was blown away by her warmth and insight just as I was with Elena. These were my only two personal interactions—yet everything tells me there are many others I’d be just as impressed with.
I love the WNBA because it empowers in every sense of the word. All the intricacies behind the scenes to take the WNBA to the next level and leverage its athletes even more, like live streaming games on Twitter, leave me coming back for more. I love the challenges that the WNBA has tackled thus far, but I also love the challenges that lie ahead and look forward to how they’ll be approached.
I was late to the party, yet walked into the party of the century. All it took was, literally, one game. You’d be mistaken not to give it a chance—just like I did.
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