Toward the end of UConn’s win over Iowa — Draymond Green posted a series of tweets touching on the pay gap and lack of media exposure to women’s sports.
WNBA Players Association President Nneka Ogwumike was asked about it and stated how it feeds into the “miseducation and ignorance” she sees on the subject.
Here are the Los Angeles Sparks forward comments in full:
“To be honest, I feel as though comments like that — which were kind of followed a few days later from Shaq’s comments to Candace [Parker] about lowering the rim — I think what I’m feeling is a lot of miseducation and ignorance. I’m always careful about using the word ‘ignorance’ because I think we’ve grown up to believe that it has a negative connotation when it really doesn’t. And it’s great to know that there’s allies out there that are seeking to see the women’s games better and the women’s business be better in sport. But I do think that a lot of that education and dispelling of the ignorance that we experience just on an individual level, it can really be kind of dissolved by us having conversations.
“So with that, I’m very, very, very, very tired of people attacking each other, especially on social media. And I want a lot of people to understand that cancel culture and exclusivity is something that is not helping us move in any direction. Although we’re in a time now where we need to make space for people who are directly experiencing the inequities and also allowing those who have the power to understand how they can use their power to see things move forward.
“When that comes to women in sport, I do appreciate Draymond coming out and using his platform to talk about it. I would like to take it a step further and say hey, let’s continue the discussions, even if they’re offline, for us to really figure out how we can really move forward in a way that’s not just helpful for women in sport, but also for everybody because it helps everyone when those who aren’t getting the most attention or most space, rise.”
Despite the backlash on his tweets, Green has since doubled down and reiterated his stance that women are “complaining” about the difference in pay between WNBA players and NBA players.
“So, then, if they don’t put money toward marketing women, the revenue never grows,” he continued, via NBC Sports Bay Area. “And it falls [on] deaf ears and comes across as a complaint because no one is going to act on it. If no one acts on it, and you keep saying the same thing over and over, it’s going to come off as a complaint — as opposed to holding these people accountable that say ‘We support women. Women empowerment this, we’re doing all of these things for Women’s Empowerment Month,’ but they don’t put their money behind it.”