Should WNBA Players Get Paid More?


Candace Parker and Riquna Williams of the Los Angeles Sparks, two WNBA players.

WNBA (Women’s National Basketball Association) players do not make nearly as much as NBA (National Basketball Association)  players for the same amount of dedication and work. Unfortunately, it is common in many jobs and careers for women to get paid less money than men for the same work. It is also common for women to be better at their jobs than men and not get raises or promotions. Although it is easy to say that the WNBA players should get paid more, it’s also true that they don’t fill up nearly as many seats as NBA games, meaning there will be less money paid by fans to pay the players.

Ticket sales are only part of it, yet it’s a big part. NBA players also get better endorsement deals and jersey sales, increasing their pay by millions. With this being said, WNBA players should make more money because they have the same dedication as the male players, sometimes even more, but this can’t happen unless the seats to games get filled up and endorsements, along with jersey sales, increase.

One reason for the pay difference is that the WNBA players do not receive the same management as NBA players to get them commercials, TV shows, and other promotions that will increase their pay. This, and the fact that people would much rather go to an NBA game than a WNBA game, which means fewer ticket sales for the WNBA, decreases the women’s pay. Currently, the WNBA’s highest player’s salary is $110,000 per year, which is far less than the highest salary of an NBA player. The highest paid NBA player’s salary is currently 25 million dollars. Michael Jordan received an NBA salary worth over 30 million dollars in a season. That’s millions of dollars more for the men who possibly do just half the work; physically, women must train harder to maintain their professional standard of conditioning.

Debatably, some WNBA players have a higher skill level than NBA players. Women have to work harder and better to develop their skill level to get the same respect as men do. Liz Cambage, a center for the Dallas Wings, tweeted that NBA refs make more than a WNBA player, and the 12th man on an NBA team makes more money than a whole WNBA team! This is very unfair, especially when you consider that the women’s basketball seasons are longer, since most go overseas to play and then come back for the start of the WNBA season. In fact, WNBA Dallas Wings’ point guard, Skylar Diggins said, “As athletes, we have to fight. As women, we have to fight. And we need more people at our table to fight with us. And we need men speaking out on these things.”

As there seems to be some progress being made, there should be some male professional athletes who should use their popularity and fan base to help the WNBA get the same spotlight. A lot of NBA players, such as Stephen Curry, Isaiah Thomas, and Paul George, are sharing their support and their respect for the WNBA players in the “#watch me work” initiative. Stephen Curry even said, in reference to the WNBA players, “ I learn a little bit from them as well.” These NBA players give the female players recognition of their game. This is a great start to the future of equally-respected basketball players.!