Like WNBA counterpart Elena Delle Donne before her, Los Angeles Sparks star Candace Parker sat down with UNINTERRUPTED CEO Maverick Carter for an episode of “Kneading Dough,” a series that gives athletes a platform to discuss their financial realities. With gender-based pay inequity becoming more of a social concern in all sectors, WNBA players have been more vocal in recent years about the disparity between their pay and that of their NBA counterparts. Still a title-seeking player in the league, Parker — a WNBA champion and Finals MVP in 2016 and winner of two league MVP awards (2008, 2013) — also is an NBA analyst with TNT, joining other WNBA players in juggling multiple careers to shore up their financial futures during and after basketball.
Here are the top takeaways from Parker’s “Kneading Dough” appearance:
On pervasiveness of sexist trolling toward women athletes:
You have the ‘back to the kitchen’ references, the ‘make a sandwich’ references ... There is a lot of people that think women athletes shouldn’t be out there being more than athletes.
On attending prom with Dwight Howard, different paths for men and women:
So I was 18, I went to prom with Dwight Howard ... McDonald’s All-American, national player of the year. He goes straight to the NBA, signed a deal, was obviously drafted by Orlando, signed a shoe deal, did all that stuff. I went to college ... which was great, but I think that’s when I first realized, there’s a huge difference. He just changed his life (financially).
Me, it’s changing my life, but not in that way.
On the lives she wants WNBA players to live after basketball:
I want women in sports to have something after basketball. I don’t want people at the airport to come up and be like ‘you’re an athlete right?’ I want to be like, no, I’m an author, I’m a businesswoman, I’m an entrepreneur, I’m this, I’m that, I want to be all those things.