A sports radio host is offering a $1 MM bet that the current WNBA championship team can’t beat a boys HS state championship team of his choosing. I suspect that’s true for a big state (CA, NY, TX) boys HS state championship team. Maybe not for the Hawaii or Alaska state champs.
I was working that evening. The manager of the bowling alley watched it on the TV in the bar.
My aunt didn’t like watching women’s tennis. She said “most women stand back and play patty-cake” ie women did not play as aggressively as men. She actually understood the game, and played a lot in the 30s and 40s. She still had her Don Budge signature racket kicking around the house in the 90s.
I played hoops, people our age do not realize how good female athletes are nowadays. WNBA players are big, fast,strong, and skilled. I cannot remember the last time I watched even a minute of an WNBA game, but have seen clips of some of them playing pick up games against NBA players, and the women did not look overwhelmed. They don’t play with the same verticality as the men, but they are physically strong and fundamentally very good, maybe better than the men in that regard. I did watch the NCAA Final Four last year. LSU was really good, big and physical. The lady from Iowa is a great, highly skilled player. Only a few of these players will even make a WNBA roster.
I think the WNBA champs would probably smoke a regular high school boys State Champ. The prep sports factory teams, where the players are recruited from all over the country to play for the “high school” Academy is probably a different story, but I wouldn’t bet any money on them against the WNBA champs.
I do xc ski races, and young women are seriously good athletes, period. And that sport requires a crazy amount of strength, speed, agility, and endurance. Jessie Diggans is the best American female xc skier, she wins World Cup events against Norwegians, Finns, and Swedes on their home turf, she’s probably 1 of the top 3 or 4 female xc skiers in the world. She would annihilate the top American male high school state champion xc skiers. Basketball is much more popular in America, so the high school kids probably could make a decent showing against the WNBA champs, but …
I watched a lot of WNBA games this year and all the finals games. I’m a huge basketball fan and even have season tickets to the Purdue (my first degree) Women’s basketball team. Plus, as a South Carolina grad (MBA) and resident, I’ve seen A’ja Wilson play for years so I feel like I know a bit about the state of the game.
I would love to see the WNBA players, or even the league itself, put up the money for this bet. Even if they lost, and I doubt they would, it would be great publicity.
I don’t follow it that closely, so I don’t know the players names. One of the Final Four teams had like a 6’7", 235 pound center, I think it was South Carolina. This young lady was just a force on the boards. I don’t see too many high school boys being able to push her out of the low post. I googled the Iowa lady’s name, Caitlin Clark, she is a female Steph Curry,lol. She launches 3 point shots from 30 feet easily, and that requires strength. I don’t think too many boys high school players would be slowing her down much. Like you, I’d love to see the WNBA take up that bet, I’d watch that game.
So what, sports is entertainment? Anything the WNBA can do to increase their advertising value is a good thing. As it stands now, the whole WNBA league has less advertising value than one episode of “The Real Housewives of Miami”
My family watched when it was on. Only one big “quibble” if I remember correctly, Riggs had to defend the doubles court area while Billie Jean the normal singles court. Then throw in the fact that Riggs had been retired for almost 20 years, meh. It was good theater.
If you want a modern day comparison, read this.
Number 203 ranked male beat Serena and Venus in back to back games back in 1998. Only thing against this, Serena and Venus hadn’t reach their peak as pros yet. However, the male player was 50.
As far as the original question, would be interesting but I would still bet on the boys. If I recall correctly, biggest player on WNBA champs is 6’4 and 225. Back when I played, the Louisiana high school champs had a 7’0 center and 2 forwards that were 6’8 and 6’6. Get a mismatch like that and its lights out. Even if they are shooting 3s like crazy, they won’t shoot good enough for long enough. (And yes, the 7 footer had an NBA career). Fast forward to today, and you get kids like Victor Wembanyama (look it him up, truly a unicorn) and you could pair him up with 4 church rec league players and probably win.
I just like to hear Las Vegas Aces, it sounds a lot better than the generic term “current WNBA championship team”. What is even better would be the 2 time consecutive WNBA championship team: Las Vegas Aces but that would sound like bragging
There are a quite a few private high schools (many of them Catholic) that are essentially training programs for pro basketball players. Most of the starters on those teams will play D1 college and a number of those will go onto play in play in the NBA after the one year cool down. They even have their own leagues like the National Interscholastic Basketball Conference (NIBC) where they play against other top national high school teams.
A high school team like that I could definitely see beating a WNBA team.
I remember the UCONN Kentucky men’s championship game. The Kentucky team was all stars to be in the NBA but they were all freshmen with just one season on the college level.
UCONN had the best senior in the league and was a tested team that won the year before.
UCONN trounced Kentucky. The Freshmen stood there lethargically while UCONN ran circles around them. No one on UCONN’s team lasted long in the NBA.
A high school senior just hears his mother yelling at him to at least do his homework. There is next to nothing there.
The women are smart, trained, tough, fast…and whatever else you want to throw in there. Along with being very underpaid.
The average height of an WNBA team would be taller than boy’s high school teams. The athleticism would be a huge gap. The skills an even worse gap. The boys would miss the vast majority of their shots.
They’re not going to be playing an average HS boys basketball team. The bet is the high school boys state championship team from a large state like New York, California or Florida. This will be a team that recruits nationwide and internationally, and serves as a factory for future NBA players. I don’t doubt that the professional women will play better team basketball, but at some point the vast difference in size, speed and athleticism should win out for an elite boys team. I understand that the UConn Huskies women’s team practices against men – men from the school’s intramural basketball league. They’re not posting up against Donovan Clingan or Adama Sanogo.
Again, depends on the high school. My high school team would have been destroyed by the worst WNBA team. But we’re not talking about the typical high school.
In the late 90s and early 2000s there was a trend of more and more players going straight from high school to the NBA. Big time players like LeBron James, Dwight Howard, Kwame Brown, Jermaine O’Neil, Tracy McGrady, Rashard Lewis, etc. Some of those guys were picked number one and most of them had stellar careers. Most of them went to private prep schools that are designed to be feeder program for the NBA. I mention this because it is possible for top high school talent to immediate have an impact on the NBA, especially if they played in a feeder school.
The NBA instituted a rule that you have to be 19 and one year removed from high school before you can enter the NBA. So kids can’t come straight come out of high school anymore. They play D1 for a year then go pro.
Point is, the next Amar’e Stoudemire or Dwight Howard are playing high school ball right now, and the rest of the guys on their teams are probably going on to play D1 basketball at a minimum. I could see a team like that beating a WNBA team.