Los Angeles Sparks forward Candace Parker is a very valuable asset to the WNBA. She's not able to play at the moment. If you want to see why, all you need to do is look at the cover of the latest ESPN Magazine. It shows her in all her pregnant glory.
The article talks about how important Parker can be for the struggling WNBA since she's not only an incredibly talented basketball player, but she's somewhat of a knockout as well. Though it seems that the article may have tried to drive home the part about Parker's physical appeal a bit too much and it's caused somewhat of an uproar amongst sports writers across the internet.
At SportsJournalists.com there's an entire debate going on about the lede paragraph to the Parker feature, which was a bit too heavy on Parker's bra size for some writer's tastes. Here's the first paragraph to the Parker story:
"Candace Parker is beautiful. Breathtaking, really, with flawless skin, endless legs and a C cup she is proud of but never flaunts. She is also the best at what she does, a record-setter, a rule-breaker, a redefiner. She is a woman who plays like a man, one of the boys, if the boys had C cups and flawless skin. She's nice, too. Sweet, even. Kind to animals and children, she is the sort of woman who worries about others more than about herself, a saint in high-tops."
So, just to be clear, Candace can fill up a C-cup which makes the fact she can dunk even more amazing, not to mention dangerous. Those things could hurt her out there.
Still, you do have to wonder if the author Allison Glock really needed to mention the fact that Parker has a C-cup. Is ESPN the Magazine trying to sell the sex appeal of Parker in hopes that it will somehow increase the television ratings of the league that currently airs games on ESPN?
Oh, and if a man had written this story, how insane would the reaction have been then? Surely more than the nine pages the current discussion has taken over at the SportsJournalists.com forums. Seriously, fellas, isn't there some sports writing you can be doing right now?
Along with writing for NBCCHICAGO.com, Tom Fornelli can also be found contributing at FanHouse, SPORTSbyBROOKS, and his own Chicago sports blog Foul Balls. He currently wears an A-cup, though he doesn't think it makes him any less of a writer.