Weekend warriors no match for elite women
Earlier this month, comedian Kevin Hart and a group of male friends challenged the UConn women's basketball team to a game of five-on-five. The video has recently made the rounds on social media.
Hart, who's so short he calls himself a "little grown man," was confident he and his entourage could defeat the Huskies, who are ranked No. 4.
That's right, a group of men whose cumulative collegiate basketball experience was one Division III season challenged one of the best women's teams in the country.
And, as expected, UConn wiped the Gampel Pavilion floor with Hart and his crew. The only things that may have been bruised during the game were five male egos ... and one guy who hit the ground pretty hard after being posted up by a UConn center.
As I watched the video, I laughed -- at first. But then I began to seethe. These men actually thought they had a chance against these elite players. The jokes they cracked made it seem like they were surprised women could run and dribble at the same time. Maybe they didn't get the memo about UConn's historic 90-game winning streak that ended last season or the 99-game home streak that ended last week.
They may also have just learned women do more than cook, clean and raise children. They are allowed to vote and play sports.
I'm not totally condemning Hart. I understand he's a comedian who's trying to get a laugh any way he can. At the beginning of the video he actually expresses trepidation about playing the women.
However, he and his crew are an example of the group of delusional men who believe just because they possess a Y chromosome that they can compete with, or even beat, elite female athletes at their chosen sport.
Of course, I'm not referring to the entire male species. I love you guys -- especially the ones who read espnW. I'm referring to those men who think a pick and roll has something to do with putting your finger up your nose but still believe they can compete with any top female athlete.
It's insulting when a man, whose only athletic experience is third-grade T-ball, challenges a collegiate or pro female athlete in her sport. If I were an elite female player I wouldn't entertain the idea. It's similar to Pablo Picasso accepting a challenge from a paint-by-numbers artist. It would never happen because the two just aren't on the same level.
Testosterone must be one powerful hormone to convince some men they can actually hold their own against the world's best female athletes.
When the WNBA's Phoenix Mercury held tryouts for their practice squad last season, a group of men showed up believing they could offer the women some good competition.
Some players "looked like they might have a hard time competing in a playground pickup game, dribbling the ball off their legs and running into each other on the three-man weave drill," an Associated Press report said of the tryouts.
Their inflated male egos told them they could actually run with the big girls. Those guys are probably the same ones who sit on the couch saying, "I could beat (insert WNBA player name) in a game of one-on-one."
They would never challenge Ray Allen to a 3-point shooting contest or claim they could box out Kevin Love. Why? Because they respect their talent. However, that same respect is missing for a woman who has also made the game her career.
The madness has to stop.
Fellas, no matter how good your mom said you were on the junior varsity team, let's remember the women have been doing this for their entire lives. Being a man doesn't give you superhuman athletic ability.
Leave the game to the professionals.
They got this.