WNBA union president Nneka Ogwumike calls for charter flights between games

The latest example is the Los Angeles Sparks. One of their star players is Nneka Ogwumike – who happens to be the President of the Women’s National Basketball Players Association. After being stuck at an airport overnight between games, she calls on the league to take action, saying in a expression“A lot has changed in the business travel landscape since we negotiated our current collective agreement,” referring to the collective agreement that came into force in 2020.
After the Sparks defeated the Washington Mystics on Sunday, Ogwumike posted a Video on social media early Monday as he attempted to fly home from Washington DC, saying: “We’re roaming the airport. It’s the first time in my 11 seasons that I’ve ever had to sleep in the airport.”
It’s been a miserable weekend to fly, according to flight-tracking website FlightAware, with 951 flights canceled in the United States on Sunday and more than 8,000 flights delayed on Sunday.

Ogwumike, who said it was 1:44am when she recorded herself in the video, said her flight was delayed several times before being canceled at 1am. The team was rebooked to 9am. Ogwumike said there weren’t enough hotel rooms for the entire team, so half the team stayed at the airport for the night.

Later Monday night, the WNBPA tweeted a statement from Ogwumike, calling on the league to “allow teams to invest in charter flights between games, beginning with the entire 2022 WNBA Playoffs, and with a reasonable resolution for the.” to continue for the entire season beginning in 2023.”

“And in a spirit of cooperation,” Ogwumike continued, “we urge airlines, both private and commercial, to recognize this bold leadership opportunity: American, Delta, JetBlue, Southwest, United, NetJets, Wheels Up, JetSuiteX and others: We encourage you to meet us at the table and work with WNBA players to help eliminate the toughest opponent they face each season: travel.”

The WNBA declined to comment when reached by CNN Monday night. Last month at the WNBA All-Star Game, WNBA Commissioner Cathy Engelbert said the league will provide charters for both teams during the upcoming WNBA Finals.

“I think we’re going to look at other ways to do charters like we’ve done in the past,” Engelbert said at the time on July 10 from west to east with the challenge of having a day off or no day off at all, so we’ll continue look for these opportunities when our budget allows. But we wanted to start slogging away somehow and getting into WNBA Finals.”

The Sparks are scheduled to host the Connecticut Sun on Tuesday.

The WNBA Playoffs begin August 17th.