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It's time for us to talk.
I’d like to welcome the Women’s Tennis Association to our select group.
Please take this tiny, uncomfortable, wooden chair at the front of the room – we saved it just for you.
We are all your friends here. The NBA, NFL, NHL, NCAA... We all care about you.
You are the most successful women’s sports organization in history.
In the 1970s, when no one gave a shit about women’s sports, your players made a deal with Big Tobacco and launched a league of your own. Amazing.
Getting young athletic women to wear those tight, little, revealing dresses as a statement on “feminism”. Brilliant.
What a way to get men to care about a women’s “sport.” Only beach volleyball is doing it better.
Cashing in on lesbian players. Genius.
You sold billions in Subaru’s and flannel shirts in underground marketing campaigns while making more money on tennis dresses than the men made on racquets or balls. Fucking unbelievable.
But you are forgetting those roots.
Ruthless deals with the devil are what got you here. Don’t let this PC bullshit with one player screw this up.
Yeah, we are talking about Peng Shuai. A good player, but not a superstar player.
A 35-year-old player, who peaked in 2014. A doubles player for fuck’s sake.
And you are walking away from CHINA.
China, home to 1.4 billion potential ticket buyers, and 50 percent of your future global market.
China, the second largest economy in the world.
China, where you have one of your 3 corporate headquarters and held 9 tournaments and the end-of-season championships.
Over what, a Weibo (Chinese tweet) that said Peng was forced to have sex with a 75-year-old commie?
Look, WTA, you’re not a kid anymore. You are almost 50.
Listen to us. Maybe you can remember something about business.
See how the NHL handles sexual assault of minors? You call it an isolated incident. You fire a coach -- maybe you say, “it is up to the criminal justice system.” But you don’t shut down a team or cancel a playoff game in Canada.
The NFL would give its left nut to break into China.
If it wasn’t for the Party's concerns about the brain damage, the NFL would be printing Communist Party logos on helmets tomorrow.
The NBA won’t walk away from China — even if they shoot somebody on 5th Avenue. It could be 30-percent of the NBA’s revenue in a few years.
If an NBA player or an assistant coach says something about freedom or genocide, the league immediately disowns that shithead and gets LeBron James or some other superstar to tweet something good about China.
It’s called Star Power, WTA, use it.
Don’t have Serena or Naomi take a “stand.” The next thing you know, they are going to ask for retirement benefits and health insurance.
That’s bad for all of us.
No one wants to see a healthy, happy, successful 100-ranked player. They want to see a half-starved “dreamer” fighting for their survival just to make the first round of a major match on ESPN.
Don’t give us the moral argument, WTA. That bullshit about being a “players’ association,” we were all founded by players. As soon as the founders die off, the adults come in and manage the “institution.”
Taking a “moral stand” could fuck this up for everybody. Will we turn off the gambling apps? Are we going to stop advertising beer?
Look at the NCAA. It has been around 3 times longer than you and makes billions more.
The NCAA says it is all about the players. It promotes them before a game. It shows commercials of former players becoming doctors, lawyers, and scientists.
But it rotates them out as fast as possible. Never let a player get bigger than the GAME. There’s no insurance in college.
There is no retirement plan – hell, they don’t even get paid by the NCAA. That’s the gold standard.
So, with all of that being said…
…We think it best you come to our crisis marketing treatment center. We can help you through this.
You can learn how to accept whatever story the Chinese tell as gospel. Get your players and coaches in line. Carrots and sticks.
Some extra appearance money here – a random drug test there. They will get on board.
It’s time to grow up – start acting like a fucking adult.
Just smile and count the money. It’s what the rest of us are doing.
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