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WNBA: It's FOULtastic. Still better than the NBA though
October 6, 2011 - Per Peterson
There is so much to enjoy about watching the WNBA finals between the Lynx and Dream: Simone Augustus’ filthy ball handling and undefendable fade-aways, sharp shooter Angel McCoughtry toying with the Minnesota defense with her playground-style, one-person offensive circus. Watching the WNBA makes you forget the womens’ counterparts in the NBA are on the verge of losing the entire upcoming season because of their spat with NBA owners over the percentage of basketball-related income players receive and the salary cap. NBA Commissioner David Stern said the first two weeks of the regular season will be wiped out if a deal isn’t reached by Monday. These negotiations have been going on for almost two years — you think they’ll end with a resolution in the next few days? Right. Anyway, back to the WNBA. Before Wednesday’s game, there was little to complain about concerning the WNBA, but that’s changed in this series, as the Dream players started to remind me of NBA players. If you saw the game you know what I’m talking about. Now, while I will admit there were plenty of questionable calls Wednesday, I can’t help but shake my head at how not a single Dream player can ever admit they commit a foul. It's clear WNBA officials have taken a page from the NBA referees' book when it comes to whistle-happiness. There has to come a point — especially in the finals — when refs just need to let 'em play. But that's not going to happen. Too bad the Dream players can't accept that. Nearly every call that went against the Dream drew the offending player’s ire. Almost every single whistle against the Dream was immediately followed by a look of disgust and complaining from the offending player, who looked like she just smelled some rotten Brie every time the ref blew the whistle against her. The team’s coaches have even told the players to give it up, that they worry too much about whining after a call and thus lose their focus. And it’s not like these calls were one-sided. Atlanta’s Iziane Castro Marques was twice fouled while taking a 3-pointer — a call you don’t see that often. Then she ends up missing all but one of her six FT attempts. Probably too concerned with what she’ll say after her next personal foul to worry about a silly thing like making her free throws. This constant complaining is something NBA players are notorious for doing, and apparently it’s catching on with the women as well. Still, I’ll take watching the Lynx over the Timberwolves any day — they stress fundamentals, actually run an offense and hardly ever get away with travelling. And even better, they’re playing.
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