The Unfair Game of the WNBA and Women’s Sports

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Many of us hear about the pay inequality gap between men and women in the context of the workplace, typically in office settings. It should come as no surprise that the same gap exists in the world of women’s sports – but is it even greater in sports?

Running the numbers on overall salary cap – take a look at the New York Knicks sitting on a $109+ million budget vs the New York Liberty at barely over $1.3 million.

Yes, you read that right.

The entire New York Liberty is basically making the same as the NBA league minimum ($925,000). Overall, the WNBA players take home less than 23% of their NBA counterparts. Yet, 83% of sports are now offering the same amount of prize money for men and women.

2020 was a breakout year for many in the business of women’s sports.  Consider this:

  • Women made up 40% of sportspeople but received just 4% of sports media coverage
  • Viewership in the National Women’s Soccer League grew by nearly 300%
  • Only 0.4% of sponsorship dollars are going to women’s sports

So what can we do to change the game? More media coverage and advocacy is key. Last year out of the top 50 highest ranked players, only 1 woman was part of that elite club – Naomi Osaka.  Perhaps Naomi Osaka has used her relative status to set a precedent for us all by withdrawing from the media and taking a mental health break – which, let’s face it, we can all use after this year.

It’s obvious that women’s sports are in demand by the fans – do your part to support them. Check out more facts and stats in this visual below:

 

The Business of Women

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