Mad Seasons: The Story of the First Women's Professional Basketball League, 1978-1981

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U of Nebraska Press, Jan 1, 2006 - Sports & Recreation - 336 pages
As the popularity of women?s basketball burgeons, Karra Porter reminds us in Mad Seasons that today?s Women?s National Basketball Association, or WNBA had its origins in a ragtag league twenty years earlier. Porter tells the story of the Women?s Professional Basketball League WBL, which pioneered a new era of women?s sports. Formed in 1978, the league included the not-so-storied Dallas Diamonds, Chicago Hustle, and Minnesota Fillies. Porter?s book takes us into the heart of the WBL as teams struggled with nervous sponsors, an uncertain fan base, and indifferent sportswriters. Despite bouncing paychecks, having to sleep on floors, and being stranded on road games, the players endured and thrived. Karra Porter brings to life the pioneers of the WBL: ?Machine Gun? Molly Bolin, who set lasting scoring records?then faced an historic custody battle because of her basketball career; Connie Kunzmann, a popular player whose murder rocked the league; Liz Silcott, whose remarkable talents masked deeper problems off the court; Ann Meyers, who went from an NBA tryout to the league she had rebuffed; Nancy Lieberman, whose flashy play and marketing savvy were unlike anything the women's game had ever seen. A story of hardship and sacrifice, but also of dedication and love for the game, Mad Seasons brings the WBL back to life and shows in colorful detail how this short-lived but pioneering league ignited the imagination of a new generation of female athletes and fans.
 

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Mad seasons: the story of the first Women's Professional Basketball League, 1978-1981

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For a nearly forgotten league that lasted just three years, the Women's Professional Basketball League (WBL) enjoyed a surprising share of good stories, recorded here for the first time. Having ... Read full review

Selected pages

Contents

1 The Lights Go Up
13
2 Chance of a Lifetime
22
3 A Mans Game
35
4 In the Locker Room
52
5 Playing by the Rules
57
6 Working Hard for the Money
73
7 Makeup Game
87
8 Ball Games
104
14 OutofBounds
167
15 Benched
178
16 The Super Rookies
186
17 Foul Play
199
18 Suspended
209
19 Home Court Disadvantage
221
20 Final Buzzer
230
21 Snapshots of the WBL
246

9 Color Commentary
118
10 Changing the Lineups
127
11 Standards of Conduct
138
12 The Money Men
143
13 Wrong League
154
Epilogue
269
WBL Teams and WBL Player Roster
275
Source Notes
283
Index
325
Copyright

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About the author (2006)

Karra Porter is a lawyer in Salt Lake City, Utah. She has represented a number of WNBA players in her practice and has given speeches on the history of women?s basketball and the law of professional basketball.

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