Seattle Storm point guard Sue Bird appeared on future Hall of Famer Kevin Garnett’s interview show, Area 21, on Jan. 18. Garnett met with Bird in Denver where she was hired in November with the Denver Nuggets to fill the role of Basketball Operations Associate.
The three-time WNBA champion talked with Garnett about her role with the Nuggets and how she has gotten to do a bit of everything. When asked about the “coolest thing” she has learned throughout the process, she discussed how general managers and scouts gather intel during pregame shootaround and otherwise explains what her new role with the Nuggets is all about.
And, Bird’s funniest quote came when discussing Nuggets center Nikola Jokic: “You know when someone is so slow, they’re fast? That’s him.”
The future Hall of Famer is never short on wit.
Garnett gets it
The showcasing of WNBA players in their additional roles outside of their playing time gives fans much desired access to their favorite players. Hopefully, the additional exposure lets casual NBA fans take an interest in these great players as well.
Days before the TNT segment aired, Garnett was interviewed about his views on the WNBA and why he makes it a point to feature WNBA players.
Garnett was very direct about his inclusion of WNBA players saying, “Our game is seen globally, but I feel like the WNBA never really gets that type of attention. There are two sides to the story. I really feel that, in order to get to the volume that it should be, people like myself that have a channel should be able to promote and push. I look forward to other channels giving it attention.”
Here, Garnett is exactly right. Those with the power to shine the spotlight on greatness should do exactly that. His final remark is a direct challenge to other media outlets who ignore the WNBA and its players.
His comments to the “naysayers” who say that women don’t know the game were definitely needed in a world where overwhelmingly talented basketball players are not given respect because of their gender.
“You don’t put a gender on it,” said Garnett. “A pick-and-roll is run the same way every time, whether a woman is running it or a man. That has no gender.”
If you knew right, you would know that the game of basketball has no color, no gender, and that the plays are designed to take advantage of personnel. At the end of the day, the play is the same and that’s what people are quick to forget. These so-called “naysayers” think that a player with brute strength or a player that is more athletic is “better” than a player that doesn’t have that — that to me is ludicrous.
Former and current NBA players have weight when they talk to the media and their continued efforts to shine a light on the great play in the WNBA eventually will bear fruit.