With free agency season having hit, it is about to be a busy time for our beloved WNBA.
It is expected to be another wild and wooly free agent period with all 12 teams looking for pieces that they believe can get their teams to the next level. With big names such as Breanna Stewart, Candace Parker, Diana Taurasi and Nneka Ogwumike up for grabs, the landscape of the W could look very different when we tip off in May.
The 2023 season will feature, for the first time, a 40-game slate. At the midpoint of that 2023 season will feature the All-Star Game, which the WNBA officially announced (following its Chicago interlude last year) will be back at Michelob Ultra Arena in Las Vegas – home of the defending champion Aces.
With the official announcement of the W’s summer festivities also came the unveiling of the official All-Star logo. And as the top of this story illustrates, it has exactly the personality and charisma one would hope for from an All-Star logo.
The various design elements were even explained in the WNBA’s official announcement as Vegas as the host site. The 19 dots on the two dice that adorn the sides of the logo are an ode to the fact that 19 All-Star Games have taken place. Notice the small red diamond in the logo’s center? That is a direct ode to the Aces themselves, whose primary and secondary logos also feature a diamond.
Also – does one notice the eight-sided star at the bottom of the logo? That is a direct reference to Las Vegas’ iconic “Welcome to Las Vegas” sign.
If anyone remembers when the NBA held its All-Star weekend in 2007 in Vegas at the Thomas & Mack Center, its logo was basically just their version of the same “Welcome to Las Vegas” sign with a tinge of NBA flair. This one has infinitely more character than even that logo.
In fact, look at virtually every NBA All-Star logo since the 2018 rendition when it was held at Crypto.com Arena – the home court of the Los Angeles Sparks.
These NBA All-Star logos nowadays have the character of a sports management class at 9 o’clock in the morning.
Unfortunately, the NBA is not the only one of the “major” sports that is simply winging it with the logos for one of its marquee events.
Next month, the NFL will stage its Super Bowl at State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona – in the same market that the Phoenix Mercury call home. Hopefully, there will be a Merc presence next month when the Big Game takes place in the Valley.
But – if anyone thought the state of the NBA’s All-Star logo was bad, one should see the even sadder state of the Super Bowl logo.
Seemingly past its prime.
The Super Bowl is knocking on the door of 60 years old. It is as if the Super Bowl logo itself is also knocking on the door of 60.
What makes this all the more jarring of when one looks at a WNBA budget as opposed to that of an NBA or NFL budget. The NFL and NBA practically print money and they can hire the best designers money can buy. Putting a bit of effort into designing a logo for a big sport takes having a creative mind. Plenty of fans on social media design creative logos all the time either for events, uniforms or athletes themselves.
But when one looks at the WNBA’s recently unveiled All-Star 2023 logo and compares it and contrasts to previous logos of NBA All-Star and the Super Bowl, WNBA All-Star 2023 looks infinitely like the more must-see event and the Sin City factor has a lot to do with it.
Do not get us wrong, though. Commissioner Cathy Engelbert deserves a hint of criticism for seemingly keeping All-Star almost completely sequestered to Las Vegas when locales such as Los Angeles and Washington, D.C. are more than deserving of hosting WNBA All-Star weekend. Not to mention, it was the previous commissioner er… “league president”…in Lisa Borders who introduced All-Star to new places such as Minnesota, Seattle and…Las Vegas.
But it is very clear that whoever designs WNBA All-Star logos needs to be hired to do those of NBA All-Star and the Super Bowl because those two leagues are asleep at the wheel.
Or should we say sleeping during the fastbreak? Or have blown the coverage?