Women Cagers Get No Respect

Women Cagers Get No Respect

Today is the Phoenix Mercury home opener. In case you don’t follow professional women’s basketball, the women’s teams play a short season during the summer. There are 34 regular season games as opposed to the men’s teams which play 82 games a season. The women’s games are way less expensive for fans, too. My season tickets for the Suns were in row 12 toward the side and cost $100 a seat. My season tickets for the Mercury were row 5 toward the center and were $20 a seat. The guys do play more games but that does not explain the salary differential. The average salary in the NBA is $4,999,000. For the WNBA it’s $55,000. An NBA rookie’s average salary is $473,604. The average WNBA rookie gets $34,000. Women athletes get no respect.

Does this spill out from our culture as whole? Of course. The dominant culture says women’s sports are not as important, not as exciting, and not as acceptable to follow. Often during the summers I judge a potential date’s worth by asking him to a Mercury game. If he blanches, he’s not worth my time.

Economics and geography have forced me to give up my season tickets. /Since I live in Munds Park in the summer, I was going to very few Mercury games. And my season ticket partner decided not to renew. For my Suns tickets, there are three of us sharing the season. One of the others retired last year. She can’t afford the tickets anymore and I realized I couldn’t either. The third partner and I bought the playoff tickets. I wanted to go out on a high and so far the Suns have accommodated me.

P.S. The Mercury beat the Los Angeles Sparks today in the last seconds. Great game.

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