As basketball returns this month for NBA and WNBA players, there is much excitement for the players and the fans. With the ongoing pandemic, players will be in a bubble to ensure their safety.
Most of the WNBA players arrived at IMG Academy in Florida at the beginning of July. Some players were not too happy about their living arrangements, and a lot of concern has been going on about that.
A look at the 2020 WNBA season
Like other professional leagues across the world, the WNBA had to make changes once the pandemic continued throughout the country. Before the start of the season, the league planned to make a schedule increase and change the number of regular-season games from 34 to 36. Also, a mid-season Commissioner’s Cup tournament was going to happen for the first time in league history.
The original start date for the 2020 season was set for May 15. On April 3, the season got postponed due to the pandemic. During the postponement of the season, the 2020 WNBA draft took place virtually on April 17. On June 4, ESPN reported that the WNBA was planning on a shortened 22-game regular season to be held at IMG academy. When this news first came out, players would receive 60 percent of their salaries. Concerns about the reduced salaries started to grow, and on June 12, the league revised its plans to include full-season salaries for the players.
On June 15, the plan got approved for the season to return. The shortened season will begin on July 24, and the playoffs will run through the end of October. Some players were hesitant about the return due to the pandemic, and some players even opted out of playing during the season.
WNBA players not happy with their living conditions in the bubble
WNBA players went to social media and addressed their concerns about their living conditions. Multiple videos quickly surfaced through Twitter as players were showing the social media world where they were living. One video showed a laundry room featuring dirty floors and a mousetrap. Another video showed a worm on the floor next to a bed that had players very disturbed.
The players did not think the living conditions would be like this, and many players are concerned about their safety living inside the bubble. If things don’t change, players will continue to have concerns about their living conditions, and on top of that, they’ll have to focus on playing a season.
NBA players and other media people addressed concerns with the WNBA bubble
When those videos went out on social media, NBA players quickly expressed their concern for the WNBA players. NBA stars like Damian Lillard and Ja Morant left comments on videos and could not believe that the WNBA players were living under those conditions.
Sports television personality Stephen A. Smith went on a rant about how bad the WNBA bubble is, and he called out the NBA on it. “The NBA might need to be aware of that and make sure they address that quick, fast and in a hurry,” he said. Over the years, there have been discussions about the NBA receiving better treatment than the WNBA, and it has been ongoing for a while. Something needs to be done so that the players feel safe.