As NBA and WNBA competition commences, many players in both leagues have been giving fans an inside look at their lives in their respective Bubbles through YouTube videos. The NBA restarted their season at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in Orlando, Florida. The WNBA is 107 miles away at the IMG Academy in Bradenton.
These videos show players traveling to Florida, enduring COVID testing protocol, attending practices and meetings and hanging out with teammates and opponents. Among the players that are making vlogs about their lives in the Bubble are Minnesota Lynx guard Lexie Brown, Philadelphia 76ers forward Matisse Thybulle, Dallas Wings forward Isabelle Harrison, and Denver Nuggets guard Troy Daniels
Brown puts an emphasis on documenting practices with her teammates and Florida’s sporadic bouts of rain. One episode showed her at an outdoor track for training, waiting for a rain system to pass through. Viewers see Brown addressing reporters about social injustices during media day and doing daily temperature checks. She introduces us to her coaching staff and several of her teammates, including WNBA leading rebounder Sylvia Fowles and Rachel Banham. Sparks forward Seimone Augustus and Las Vegas Aces star A’ja Wilson also made cameos in one of the episodes. Brown’s YouTube channel also features videos of her experiences competing overseas.
Thybulle takes viewers from his home to his first meal in quarantine in the first episode. His creative use of jump cuts condenses his day-to-day activities while still being informative. Viewers follow him on a boat ride with teammates Tobias Harris and Kyle O’Quinn in one episode and complete rookie duties throughout the series. Thybulle also shows team meetings relating to their plan to address social justice issues. Cornhole matches, weightlifting in hotel rooms, and a team trip to the driver’s range are highlights of the series. All Stars Joel Embiid and Russell Westbrook make cameo appearances.
Harrison usually narrates her plans for the day at the beginning of each episode. In her first Bubble episode, she shows her preparing to pack and doing errands before traveling to Florida. In the second episode, Harrison gives viewers a tour of the IMG Academy campus while on her way to practice. She also shows the Dallas Wings training room, which was converted from a hotel villa. There was a team dinner where the Wings players played Heads Up! and the card game Speed. Los Angeles Sparks star Candace Parker and former Oregon standout Satou Sabally make appearances.
Daniels Bubble vlog begins on his birthday, July 15, where he picks out his birthday outfit and gives himself a photo shoot. He gives Lakers forward Kyle Kuzma a birthday photoshoot in his third episode. Daniels narrates his plans for the day at the beginning of his videos and utilizes background music heavily throughout each episode. He gives viewers a tour of a lounge where players can read books, play video games, table tennis, and board games. Prior to the Nuggets first scrimmage, Daniels shows his ritual of eating breakfast while doing Normatec therapy.
While these videos give a behind-the-scenes look on the WNBA and NBA Bubbles, the vlogs profile a camaraderie among players and give an in depth look into the personality and creativity of the hosts.