Development is a phrase used usually when describing the WNBA. And a method for the league to attach with followers is permitting them to get to know the celebrities higher — on and off the court docket.
That’s the intent of “Shattered Glass: A WNBPA Story,” which is a Tubi-exclusive, behind-the-scenes view into the lives of WNBA MVPs — the New York Liberty’s Jonquel Jones and Breanna Stewart, the Los Angeles Sparks’ Nneka Ogwumike and WNBA legend Sheryl Swoopes.
Produced by MALKA in partnership with the WNBPA and Puma, this documentary is a first-of-its-kind piece that options among the recreation’s greatest gamers within the WNBA.
It’s scheduled to air Jan. 31 completely on Tubi.
“It was a variety of enjoyable filming the documentary,” Jones, a four-time All-Star who gained WNBA MVP throughout the 2021 season, informed Fox Information Digital. “Numerous work as properly, ensuring all people was obtainable and all the things as a result of we shot it throughout the season. So, there have been a variety of shifting items.
“It was most likely the primary time I’ve had a gaggle of individuals following me so in depth. I’ve had shorter items with the WNBA and different alternatives the place folks would come and spend like a day within the life. To have or not it’s a number of filming periods, totally different members of the family and the canine, you get a special perspective.”
Perspective is the important thing to this documentary.
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Las Vegas Aces star Kelsey Plum spoke to Fox Information Digital in November 2023, explaining how she believes there isn’t a “nice inside scoop into the tremendous stardom of WNBA stars.” Leagues just like the NBA market their stars to make them extra relatable for followers.
Jones took it a step additional, believing all WNBA gamers must get their tales on the market.
“I believe the WNBA, at occasions, we strive our greatest to attach with the superstars,” she defined. “However I believe it kinda leaves a bit bit extra to be desired by way of listening to among the different tales of gamers within the league. I believe it kinda confirmed previously the place we’ve had a sure funds, and we solely have been capable of spotlight sure gamers. Due to that, you’d see most likely one business yearly, and it was like, ‘OK, we’ve seen this business like 100 occasions now.’
“When you’ve firms like MALKA invested and permit us to carry our tales to the desk and to have the ability to do it in a approach we did it this yr, like I mentioned earlier than, simply having so many filming periods and having totally different views and simply having a lot materials you can carry an awesome product to the desk, it’s going to permit us to proceed to develop.”
“Shattered Glass” permits Jones to inform her story about how a 6-foot-6 ahead from the Bahamas made her identify with the Connecticut Solar. However whereas followers can have a look at the stat sheets and the draft report to see that, the documentary exhibits a extra private facet of Jones that she often retains non-public.
“I believe I’m a fairly humorous individual,” she mentioned, laughing. “I believe the documentary does job of kinda exhibiting my humor bit. Simply type of permitting me to open the doorways to folks that have by no means actually seen that facet of me. We did some filming at my home, get to fulfill my canines a bit bit. And I’m a fairly non-public individual with regards to, like, social media and stuff. So, I believe that facet of me is sweet to see and permit followers to have that connection.”
Gamers on the faculty degree are creating their very own stardom, too, due to NIL offers and being able to market themselves earlier than going professional.
However this documentary additionally exhibits the sacrifices WNBA gamers are making. Many WNBA gamers play abroad within the offseason to complement comparatively modest pay.
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“It’s making an attempt to achieve the audiences and making an attempt to allow them to see what number of sacrifices we, as WNBA gamers, should make as a way to play at such a excessive degree,” mentioned Jones. “We kinda contact on it within the documentary as properly, the place we’ve got to, most occasions, a variety of us go abroad. I’m a kind of gamers. I’m solely within the U.S. proper now as a result of I’ve a break. So, in a pair weeks, I’ll be heading again to China.
“So, we’ve got these youthful gamers coming in [with] these NIL offers, they usually’re going to be stars in our league. I hope that this documentary sheds gentle on the sacrifices we’re making now in order that, once they come into the league, they don’t should make these sacrifices. They will play in the summertime and be capable of rehab their our bodies and work on their video games throughout the offseason and never should decide to enjoying abroad.
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“I believe shedding a lightweight on that’s going to hopefully carry extra of these conversations to the desk and permit the Caitlin Clarks and Angel Reeses to not should do what we do.”