We Got Game, When Will We Get Options?


In recent years, there have been new leagues coming on to the scene and making a name for themselves. There isn’t just the NBA or WNBA anymore. Two of the biggest alternates are The Basketball Tournament (TBT) and The BIG3. Currently, both of these tournaments do not feature women’s play. We have the game, so could these be options for us soon?

The Basketball Tournament

The Basketball Tournament kicked off in 2014, in front of 17 fans and has since partnered with ESPN, paid out of millions of prizes, crowned champions, and been watched by the masses. TBT’s goals are simple. First, get your team of at least seven players together. Second, apply and qualify for the tournament. Third, compete for the title and split the payout between you and your teammates! Sounds fun right?

What makes TBT more fun is The Elam Ending! TBT implemented The Elam Ending starting in 2018. The goal of the ending is to have the game end naturally. At the first dead ball under the 4-minute mark in the fourth quarter, eight points will be added to the leading team’s score. That number becomes the winning point total. During the last four minutes, there is no clock, which makes the losing team hone in on defense. The ending became so popular, it made its first NBA appearance during the 2020 NBA All-Star Game, and not long after, national teams were adopting the rules as well.

The BIG3

In 2017, Ice Cube and Jeff Kwatinetz announced BIG3. The BIG3 is a 3-on-3 half-court basketball league, that consists of the best players to ever play the game. They have rules that are unique and special to their league as well. They implemented the four point shot behind the three point line that players can attempt any time during the game. Also, the first team to reach 25 points sends the game to halftime and the first team to 50 wins the game! Lastly, this year they added “Bring the Fire”. This challenge allows each team, per half, to challenge a foul, and go one on one with an opposing player. Now, what if these two leagues added women?

We Got Game…and Options

The biggest, best, and well-known women’s basketball league is the WNBA, but what if there were other avenues after a player chooses to retire from the league or is cut from a team? We have game, but where else can we showcase it? It’s no secret that the WNBA has a few older players, not enough teams, and a history of cutting bright, young talent. Ice Cube and The BIG3 have not shied away from including women. WNBA legends Lisa Leslie and Nancy Lieberman are the top two coaches in the league. Lieberman won a championship and Coach of the Year in 2018, and Leslie did the same in 2019!


TBT has been hit with the question of when a TBT Women’s tournament would happen. As early as July of this year, the league hinted at the possibility of adding a women’s tournament. With TBT hinting and The Big 3 already having women in visible positions, the sky is the limit to see more women, in more leagues, on our screens in the near future! We have the talent, the interest, and the marketability. This has been proven time and time again. When women are put on national television, the numbers are there. When women are given a chance, the numbers are there. Only time will tell which league will bet on women first. We have the game, could these become our options?


About Karissa Engram

WNBALead and TheLeadSM Contributor #WNBA #WBB

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