Coco Gauff, WNBA Negotiating For Better Salaries, 65% Of Most Successful Businesswomen Played Sports, Simone Biles, And Elena Delle Donne
Coco Gauff Wins Her First WTA Title At 15 – Outdoing Serena And Venus Who Won At 17
By Reese Wolfe
Coco Gauff, an American fifteen-year old, made history as she played against Andrea Petkovic in her first Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) final of her career. Gauff is the youngest women to play in the WTA finals since 2004 when Tashkent competed for the title. Gauff’s recent achievement is not only notable due to her young age, but due to her outstanding performance considering she was the under dog heading into the tournament. Coco Gauff’s position in the finals definitely came as a shock to all. “I thought I was out in qualifiers and now I’m here,” Gauff said after earning her spot in the finals. Going into the tournament Coco Gauff was ranked 110th in the world, however, after her outstanding performance in the WTF singles tournament, it looks like there is no where to go but up for 15-year-old Coco Gauff.
The Women’s National Basketball Players Association Are Negotiating for Better Salaries and Conditions
By Zac Cornell
Although the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team has gotten more press coverage around their fight for equal pay, the Women’s National Basketball Players Association has also begun negotiations for improved salary, marketing, and player conditions. And on October 28th, the WNBA and WNBPA announced in a joint statement that they have agreed to extend the current collective bargaining agreement until December 31st to continue discussions for a new agreement.
In the current collective bargaining agreement (CBA) the average compensation for WNBA players last season was $116,000 as cited by the NBA. To give some perspective, that salary is six-and-a-half-times less than the NBA’s minimum salary. According to the NBA, the top-paid WNBA player’s compensation was more than $187,000.
In July, Cathy Engelbert was hired to become WNBA commissioner and CEO. She is the first person to hold the title of “commissioner” as previous heads of the organization were named “president”. NBA commissioner Adam Silver said the change in title was intended to signal that the WNBA’s new leader would have the same status as the head of any other sports league. Having previously worked at financial services company Deloitte, Engelbert told Fortune that she viewed the issues facing the women’s basketball league as the “perfect business problem.”
While Engelbert realizes that salaries should be raised for female basketball players, she knows she must simultaneously get more people to watch and attend WNBA games, spend more money on marketing, generate more sales and get more sponsorships and support from businesses. “We have a big issue around women’s sports right now around money,” Engelbert told Fortune. “Less than 5% of corporate sponsorship goes to women and less than 5% of media coverage goes to women.”
Like the U.S. Women’s Soccer team who are dominating in their sport throughout the world, the U.S. Women’s National Basketball team has won six consecutive gold medals, and will compete for their seventh gold at the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo. But the lack of publicity around this amazing achievement hinders the enthusiasm and success of women’s basketball.
One issue Commissioner Engelbert already addressed is agreeing to provide league-covered charter flights during playoffs to accommodate player complaints about the difficulty associated with commercial travel. Engelbert said, “We believe it is in the best interest of the players to provide them with an opportunity to arrive expeditiously in the city of the first game of the WNBA semifinals and have a full day on-site to practice, rest and prepare.”
The Women’s National Basketball Players Association are fortunate that Engelbert can empathize with them. She was a Division I basketball player at Lehigh University, under Hall of Fame coach Muffet McGraw, and her father played for the Detroit Pistons in 1957. Hopefully the two sides will be able to agree to a new CBA and the WNBA will continue to grow in prominence and success.
65% Of The Most Powerful Women in Business All Played Competitive Sports
By Charlotte Price
A newfound association between female leadership in the business world and competitive sports has been well documented and studied. Even though they have different ways of conquering the business world, 96% of the top female executives played sports while growing up.
In a Well + Good article, Nancy Green, the CEO and president of Athleta, talks about her own personal experiences. She says “the road to business success is paved with challenges… succeeding at leading a business requires unwavering determination and belief in yourself and your team.” It can easily be assumed that Green believes that playing a sport and being part of a team requires lots of confidence, teamwork, patience, and overall creates the strongest women possible. Most of these traits come from sports, and Green immersed herself into many: skiing, sailing, and field hockey. Green continues to say, “I credit much of my professional success to being willing to step forward for an opportunity, being willing to take risks, to learn fast from both mistakes and wins.” This is the mindset and skills that every business leader should have.
More articles found more and more study results. In a Fortune article by Valentina Zarya, Zarya points out that the correlation between sports and strong women in business is “undeniable”. A study in 2015 by espnW and EY found that more than half (52%) of the c-level executives who were surveyed played sports in college or high school, or both. The most popular sports among those women surveyed were swimming, basketball, and tennis. Now, that percent has obviously gone up as I mentioned in the beginning of this article.
Overall, women who played sports often tend to have a voice in their head that tells them “you can do this” or “don’t give up”, and that is what makes them the most powerful women in business.
The Succession of Simone Biles in Gymnastics
By Julia Carroll and Haley Brettschneider
Simon Biles, the twenty-two year old American Olympic gymnast, has proven herself an incredible gymnast and athlete, with impeccable skill. The young girl is a confident daredevil, that always seems to bring 100% every time she competes. Her flawless, graceful execution of her routines often masks the true rigorous, athletic training that she completes, yet her muscles and strength pose a different view.
This October (2019), in Stuttgart, Germany, Biles broke a world record of 24 world medals won by a gymnast. Not only did she break the record, she proceeded to win yet another gold medal with her stellar floor routing making her at a 25 medal count.
Biles had an emotional ending to her floor routine since it would be her final world championship. That routine scored a 15.133 points — well ahead of her nearest competitors, who included American Sunisa Lee, 16, who took silver (14.133) in her world championships debut, and Russia’s Angelina Melnikova (14.066) who took bronze.
Biles’s coach, Laurent Landi, claimed that Simone is always looking to step past the boundaries, and add her own flare into her moves. Supporting his claim, after taking a break following her 2016 experience at the Olympics in Rio, Biles did just that. She has incorporated two new, original gymnastics moves in her floor routine: a double-twisting, double-somersault dismount on beam and a triple-twisting double somersault, which she has now claimed the names of.
Not only is Simon Biles an outstanding individual athlete, she also led the U.S. women to their fifth consecutive world team medal.
Elena Delle Donne Wins MVP Again As She Leads The Washington Mystics To Their First Championship Title
By Zac Cornell
Although Washington Mystics player Elena Delle Donne suffered from a bruised knee, a broken nose, and three herniated discs, she persevered throughout the WNBA finals and was crowned with her second MVP award as she led her team to their first championship title against the Connecticut Suns and achieved the first 50/40/90 shooting season in WNBA history.
This was also the first WNBA finals win for coach Mike Thibault. Although Thibault was named WNBA Coach of the Year three times (2006, 2008, 2013) and is the winningest coach in WNBA history, this was his first WNBA Finals win. “A lot of people questioned why I went to a team that hadn’t been to the playoffs in a while,” Delle Donne said, “and I saw it with coach, I knew he was building something really special.”
Thibault was the head coach of the Connecticut Suns before moving to the Washington Mystics in 2012, possibly making the finals win over his old team even more poetic.
After the game, Delle Donne said to Thibault, “Have I told you lately that I love you?” revealing to reporter Holly Rowe that she posed the rhetorical question to Thibault after every game throughout the playoffs. It was an exceptional moment for both.