Storm’s Bird, Stewart Featured In ESPN Body Issue
By Jasmine Brown
This year’s ESPN Body Issue will have a little bit of history. The Storm’s Sue Bird and Breanna Stewart are part of the issue, marking the first time that two WNBA players will be featured in the 10-year history of the publication. This will also be the first time that two players from the same team will be featured. This is huge for the WNBA, which is growing more each day. It is apparent that more major sports outlets are now paying attention to the league.
Bird has been the face of the Storm since her arrival in 2002, while Stewart currently leads the WNBA in scoring, averaging 22 points per game.
For Stewart, being featured in the magazine has special meaning.
In a tweet she posted on Wednesday she said: “I started this journey of coming forward publicly 9 months ago and have been working on what would be next. Being in the Body Issue for me was about having agency and ownership over my body, but I also realized there’s more to this story.”
Last October, Stewart released an article entitled, “Me Too” through the Players Tribune. She spoke on her encounters with sexual assault and how she struggled with that while playing basketball. Yes, she won four championships in college, but she was unhappy behind the scenes. After revealing her story, it seems easier for her to live her life more normally. Towards the end of the article she said, “Every time I tell someone, I feel a little more unburdened. I wish it was as simple as saying that it’s just something that happened to me. Part of it is just that simple - it literally is something that happened. But I don’t know why it happened.”
In a society where women sometimes are subjected to greater harsh treatment, it is very important that more women come out and tell their stories. It will make a healthy domino effect and create a more inclusive environment with a substantial amount of support. It always starts with one and more will follow when comfortable.
Stewart’s E:60 episode will air at 9 a.m. ET this Sunday, while the ESPN Body issue hits the shelves on June 29.