Right smack dab in the middle of the NBA Championship series, the WNBA will begin their second season Saturday. They begin while the world focuses on the Bulls winning their championship (their second three-peat) and the World Cup in full swing with high hopes that there won't be any terrorist activity in France.
For a league as young and hopeful as the WNBA is, I hope they don't drown in the sea of publicity other sports are now receiving. Even baseball is big news these days with McGuire perilessly close to the Roger Maris ledge of 61 home runs in a season. Still, the WNBA will give another go Saturday with two new teams and plenty of hype.
I eagerly anticipated the all-woman's league as the tip-off to their first ever season approached last year. I found myself consumed by promises of an exciting brand of round-ball, one that would be more based on fundamentals than the men's game had become. Fast-paced and high scoring, basketball at its best.
As happy as I was that America finally woke up and embraced a women's professional sports league, there were some peculiar things about the league that seemed strange. Most importantly, why does the WNBA play two 20 minute halves instead of four 12 minute quarters like the NBA?
If anyone knows the answer to this, please let me know.
It didn't make sense to me because the WNBA essentially shaved eight minutes off the clock making the women's professional game no different than college basketball.
For some reason, this gives me a feeling that the league's organizers don't consider the WNBA a bonafied professional league. A lot of points can be scored in eight minutes, and scoring in the women's game is already lower on average then the men's game anyway. Why make the women play shorter games than the men? Are they suggesting women don't have the physical capacity to play a 48 minute game? If so, that's what substitutes are for.
If that's what organizers think, why not lower the rims to nine feet, or, maybe make the basketball, say, the size of a grapefruit. That will make it easy to handle for women's smaller more feminine hands.
Hey, organizers of the WNBA, let these women play 48 minutes like their counterparts in the NBA. Put them on the same level as the men. It would only add credibility, and these women deserve it!
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