it seems most of the arguments here are that Chicago should have taken Skylar primarily for marketing reasons. Of course, it would have been great to have her playing so close to South Bend. But the other girl, at this point, has a skill set and a height advantage that makes her a "no"brainer" pick if your'e mainly concerned about winning. Yes, the WNBA needs to be marketed better, but so do alot of sports programs including the men's at ND. When you draft players, you're first goal has to be who's the best choice for what we need. If you're intent on building a winner the player from Delaware has to be your pick. The best result will be that Skylar fits in well at Tulsa and plays well. Her shooting needs improving, but her leadership qualitites and desire to win should carry over to the pro game and serve her well.
Not at Cleveland. Their last world series win was under Bill Veeck. And, yes, he did have weekend fireworks and offered some great promotions, but he also brought in Joe Gordon from the Yankess to stabilize his infield and gave Lou Boudreau, the greates shortstop of his time, the reins as manager and then proceeded to spend money to build up the talent on the club. Veeck was a shrewd baseball guy. He knew the value of promtion, but he also knew talent and kept Cleveland in contention even after forty eight with some smart moves that had to do with talent more than promotion. The great Early Wynn was another smart pick up. He also brought in Mickey Vernon, a great first baseman from Washington, but Micky didn't do all that great in Cleveland. But Wynn certainly did. I spent many summer afternoons and nights in Cleveland stadium back then and the Indians were a fun team to watch. Of course, Bob Feller was my favorite and I have an authographed ball from him. A great part of my youth finally died when he passed away last year.
Veeck owned the '59 White Sox that lost to the Dodgers in the World Series.
There, too, he certainly placed an emphasis on promotions, including the installation of the famous "exploding scoreboard."
He acquired Wynn, who won the '59 Cy Young, as well as a couple of other key deals that helped the Sox win the pennant.
It was Veeck's second stint with the White Sox that was ugly. He was undercapitalized from the start, and within months after buying the team, the "modern" free agency era began.
Veeck was screwed. Being resourceful as always, Veeck employed a "rent-a-player" strategy to great success for one season, 1977. Veeck traded young prospects for players entering their final year before free agency, speculating that players thus incentivized would be productive.
In the short term, Goose Gossage and Terry Forster for Richie Zisk and Bucky Dent for Oscar Gamble worked out brilliantly; in the long-term, not so much.
The '77 South Side Hit Men, who were in first place in August, were the only real highlight of that stretch. Other than that team, Veeck's second White Sox teams were best known for softball uniforms, short pants, Disc Demolition and the best and most appropriate banner in sports history, "(Rightfielder Claudell) Washington Slept Here."
Before I realize that the Browns were from St. Louis, not Cleveland.
Good stuff on the Indians and your childhood.
of territorial draft picks.
In the early days of the struggling NBA each team could designate a local college player (within x number of miles) as a "territorial" pick and no other team could draft that player. It was designed to, as so many posters have stated, "put butts in the seats."
The Connecticut team would dominate. Might as well let Geno coach it in his spare time.
and while it worked for a while, some teams just flat out sucked.
Some teams have kept this mentality, see the Mystics, and fans have stopped coming because the team was terribly constructed. It's really only worked for the Sun and that's because UConn has been stacked.
I believe Iowa had a big height advantage over ND. Perhaps Louisville did as well. I'm sure there were other teams that did as well. We steamrolled them all. When you're talking about EDD's height mixed with her skill level, then that is a big no-brainer. Height with little-to-no skill isn't an advantage.
be more popular in Chicago than Delle Donne.
Attendance increased around 1,500 to 2,000 fans during Skylar's time at ND. Knowing that a couple of buses would be making the trip from Northern Indiana is something that Delle Donne can't deliver.
There are rare opportunities to cash in with the WNBA. This was a lost one, which isn't to say that EDD can't ultimately develop her own celebrity in Chicago. I just think Skylar was more ready made.
if they can't effectively market Delle Donne. I mean, after all, she's not the least bit photogenic.
Without question, Diggins' combination of basketball talent (including intangibles) and marketing appeal is unmatched among women's college basketball.
But moving forward, Delle Donne has the higher ceiling for that combination, in my estimation.
I find the winning vs. marketing debate interesting. Notwithstanding my personal affinity for Bill Veeck (I mean, how can you not love a MLB owner who serves beers to two high school seniors there to interview him for an article in their school paper?), I think he was on the wrong side of the debate. In his defense, he was often forced into taking that approach, due to the lack of talent and/or financial wherewithal of the teams he ran.
Nothing markets like winning, and I suspect that's true even in women's basketball.
None of this is to say that Chicago will either win or market Delle Donne effectively. I don't know a damn thing about that franchise, and frankly I don't suspect that will change.
As I get older, my interest in professional sports continues to wane. And I never was one of those guys who passionately followed former Notre Dame football or men's basketball players in the professional ranks. I was pleased for success they may have had, but didn't make any emotional investment.
The league is marketed improperly.....
the price for what it would have taken to move up in the draft to select Lindsay Whalen, without question the most popular female hoopster ever to play in the state. It turned out to be a huge marketing boo boo for the Lynx, as many predicted it would be.
It took six more years, but eventually Lindsay ended up with the Lynx. Better late than never, but I'm sure the Lynx brass wishes they could have a mulligan for their 2004 timidity.
The Sky's situation is obviously a little different, but the league still needs to put fannies in the seats. With all due respect to Elena, a tremendous player, drafting Skylar would have been a marketing coup which only presents itself once in a blue moon.
It takes stars to build a league and the stars need to be in the right venue.
I love Skylar, but EDD is the better pro prospect.
She wants to get into sports TV. Perhaps she can start doing some sports reporting on TV in Tulsa (much smaller mkt) and get a start on her real career.
Now NY and LY would have been better for marketing, but if she wants to break into TV, Tulsa is probably better.
I understand that there are 3 outstanding players and all of that, but I wonder if buts in seats is almost as good as winning in the WNBA?
No one, and I mean no one, has the skill set Delle Donne possesses. Closet is probably Lauren Jackson.
It sounds cynical, but it's probably true for that league.
unless the NBA fails.
Butts in seats, eyeballs on TV. That's what Chicago needs. Elena is not going to get that done.
Skylar's mom probably wants to cry right now. 2000 miles away.
And that's nothing against Skylar, it's just a reflection of the fact that Chicago is a big city with a lot of competition for people's attention. The first half of the WNBA season overlaps with the Cubs, White Sox, plus the Bulls and Blackhawks if they're in the playoffs. Chicago also has an MLS team. The combination of all that means she'll be on the back page of the sports section.
She will be one of the only shows in town in Tulsa.