Inequality in the Workforce: WNBA vs NBA

Recently owner of the NBA’s Dallas Mavericks went on to say that given the opportunity he would draft in the upcoming NBA Draft Britney Griner. During the draft, athletes who played in college can enter with a chance to play in the NBA. Only the select few will get selected based on achievements during their playing career and potential to be a great player. Britney Griner could arguably be one of the best female college basketball athletes ever. She has set records at her school Baylor University and has won national championships. She was undoubtedly the best player in college basketball the past 4 years. The problem with this is the Dallas Mavericks are a part of the NBA featuring males only.  Marc Cuban said he would draft her and this is one step in the right direction. Maybe one day, everyone will stand up for a great female basketball player and put them in the league. Griner is definitely better than some of the lower level NBA players. Cuban says he would treat her like any other basketball player and if she was the best one then he would select her. Gender should not be a choosing point for whether the player is good or not.

Another issue is pay. The highest paid athlete in the WNBA is Tamika Catchings making $105,500 per season while many players in the NBA make upwards of $20 Million per year such as Kevin Garnett. This is outrageous and a prime example of inequality, but who can we blame? No one but us is the one and only answer. The reason these athletes from the NBA, NFL, and MLB make so much money is the popularity and the endorsements they receive. Also the attendance factors in greatly and helps pay the athletes. These franchises in the WNBA do not cost nearly as much as the NBA. We are the ones who buy tickets to NBA games even though they are expensive instead of a cheaper WNBA game. ESPN and all athletic television programs play NBA games because we want them to. Yes there a few supporters of WNBA but compared them to the NBA, and it is no contest. I completely think it is unfair that they get paid much lower than the NBA but it’s our fault. Maybe that is why women should start playing in the NBA if they are as good as the NBA players. Griner would pose a real threat to some NBA players. Some critics would say is she tall enough, athletic enough and so on, many would respond she can flat out play. She may be extremely skinny but many players fit that mold: Reggie Miller, Anthony Davis, Teyshaun Prince, and perhaps best player in the NBA, Kevin Durant. One can be successful without being strong. It has been proven. Also to say she is not tall enough, she is towering in at 6’8. Brittney Griner could pose real threat to players in the NBA, she may not be a star but she can show all of us that women can play in the NBA and begin to stop inequality in sports.

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8 Responses to Inequality in the Workforce: WNBA vs NBA

  1. I agree with the whole concept that there is little equality between men and women in regards to playing basketball on the professional level. You did a good job at explaining how the system is set up to allow for such a disconnect between the male and female athletes. Endorsements and popularity I agree are to blame, but I would also argue that once you’re on top, the only place to go is down, and when you’re on the bottom, the only place to go is up. Simple logic, but I think it applies to this situation. Mr. Cubans comments and the publicity of this occurrence shows how anything can help these women athletes right now. More and more things like this will continue to happen and women will continue to show out on the court and be better than some male players. In my opinion, one day the women basketball players get the clout they deserve.

    • dozto001 says:

      Agreed, It will take time for it to happen but if our sports can get out of the norm and start seeing their are females with talent then it could go a long way.

  2. jhump017 says:

    I agree also, the WBNA will never be as broadly broadcasted as the mens. It’s a shame, women athletes are just as good as the men, some even better!!!!

  3. dozto001 says:

    Yes but that’s where I propose that these women and men conjoin together, if they do not make it then that it where another lesser league can be made for both. At first it may be a bit skewed towards men but if women grow up competing with other males they are bound to be as good if not better then males.

  4. mziar001 says:

    I agree Griner is an amazing athlete and basketball player and could play at the professional level. Professional sports dominated by males is a cultural norm that I believe won’t change because the public accepts it. The reason male athletes are paid so much more is due to endorsements and the popularity.

  5. rawpickle says:

    I support your theory on inequality of NBA and WNBA because it is crazy when people always comparison of female athletic to male athelic rather than female because it undermines their ability as player and givng male athelic more leverage why sport is so popular. Also i must say it a business like who would u rather watch the most electrify sport NBA or dull and somewhat exciting WNBA, so this is the reason why male dominate sport entertainment business from their to go above and beyond. Think about it Brittney Griner versus Anthony davis so who will win??? Exaclty… Also Damian Lillard versus Skylar Diggins, well i dont know but it will be a close game because of skylar’s talent and heart

  6. Matt C says:

    NBA players make more because more people want to watch it. It has nothing to do with inequality. It’s the same reason soccer players in the United States aren’t paid as much: people don’t want to watch it as much. There is not one single WNBA player who could compete in the NBA. It’s not a knock on women, they are just not physically capable of playing against the best men in the world. End of story. They will never, ever be paid as much because the product is not nearly on the same level. You may personally enjoy it, but the other millions of people in the world disagree with you.

  7. JBone says:

    This article is a bit silly…you basically answer your own question–NBA athletes make more than WNBA athletes because many more people are interested in the NBA. They buy NBA tickets, NBA gear and watch the NBA on TV. No one is to “blame”. It isn’t blind inequality. Fact is, NBA basketball is better. It’s the same reason people choose one movie over another, one bottle of wine over another, one car over another.

    Griner is a great basketball player, for sure. She would, however, get eaten alive in the NBA. A thin 6’8″ might make you a physical force in the women’s game, but it makes you a small forward in the NBA. Unless she can handle the ball, defend and shoot like an NBA small forward, I don’t see how she’d make it work. Sorry. Not sexist, just fact.

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