Cappie Pondexter — WNBA Baller Is Ready For Business
MN: Do you think the comparisons—as far as attendance to the games, salaries and popularity of the players—between the NBA and WNBA are still relevant?
As a player, it’s tough as a female sometimes. Attendance, salaries and popularity are still way lower than the NBA, but the WNBA is making progress.
In my lifetime, I may not see women in the WNBA making a $1 million, but what I can do is paint the picture of what it could be in the future. That’s my goal for young women who want to pursue basketball professionally.
MN: How did you get to the WNBA? Does it start as you playing as a kid? What’s your story?
Basketball came to me because my brother would go to the playground and play basketball after school. Growing up in Chicago, that’s what everyone did afterschool. Once, I decided to pick up the ball and dribble, my brother would laugh…and so it became a challenge.
I got so good, that I was the only girl on all-guy team, like a pee-wee league, I was 10-years-old, the tallest at 4’11, playing center. I’ve been playing all-year-round since then.
MN: Tell us about owning a successful lifestyle management firm.
Lisa Smith Craig, my partner and I, have know each other for 6 years and 1-½ years ago we started the company, 4 Season Style Management, in New York. We provide fashion and image advice to not only professional athletes, but all kinds of clients
MN: Why did you decide on lifestyle management and not say, a fashion line?
I want to get into having a fashion line, but later when I go back to school. As a WNBA player, the way people perceive us…a suit and a shirt is not really cool, maybe for the coaches sitting on the bench. I love helping people shop and developing these images.
MN: It seems like you’re very interested in building your brand outside of basketball. Why?
A lot of people say that it’s early, but I say why not start now because you never know what tomorrow brings. It’s important to build a foundation, and when I got traded to NYC, I knew what I had started was falling right in line with the move I was about to make. New York is a state of opportunity in whatever field you’re interested. Phoenix was a great city, but it was time for me to move on. NYC was a perfect fit. [The New York Liberty] needed to be elevated, and on the business side I could start my brand.