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What are the solutions, and how much would they cost, to avoid WNBA travel headaches in the playoffs? – The Athletic

Death, taxes and WNBA travel woes.

Every season, it seems, there are new travel issues that plague the WNBA, forcing players and teams into unfortunate circumstances that unfairly tests their mettle at new levels.

On Thursday night, Connecticut coach Curt Miller revealed another instance of the dilemma. After the Sun beat the Chicago Sky 79-68 in the second game of their WNBA semifinals, he explained the kind of travel gymnastics taking place Friday as both teams made their way to Chicago for the third and fourth games of the series.

Each team — with roughly 20 members in each travel party — planned to split into three groups apiece, and travel from two airports (Hartford Bradley and Boston Logan) in order to get to Chicago on non-stop flights that made sure players avoided main class cabins or center seats.

“That’s what this league goes through,” Miller said. “That’s what these amazing women, the best in the world at what they do, go through.”

Connecticut had the benefit of a double bye, so the Sun had made travel plans to all of their potential destinations for the semifinals weeks ago. But Chicago, having played its way into the semifinals through two single-elimination victories, did not. As a result, the Sky’s travel day Friday — just two days before Game 3 — began at 3:30 a.m.

It follows a history of WNBA travel headaches.

In 2018, for the first time in league history, a WNBA team forfeited a game after a 24-hour travel saga that had left the Aces feeling as though they were neither mentally or physically ready to play a game.


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