Washington Mystics head coach Mike Thibault is an old-fashioned type of person. He likes his dad jokes, appreciates the simple things in life and most certainly is not going to complain about the lack of amenities within the WNBA's bubble on social media.
As WNBA athletes have begun their bubble quarantine down in Bradenton, Fla, several players have expressed their disdain for some of their living conditions.
Images and videos have scattered Twitter and Instagram of the player's laundry rooms filed with mouse traps, worms on the floor of some rooms, and their inadequate meals. The Mystics' own Tianna Hawkins posted about her shower being backed up on her IG story. While these are all less than ideal, Thibault has a different approach on how to get some changes.
"I find it to kind of be a generational difference," Thibault, 69, told the media via Zoom. "My first instinct if something isn't right, is to try to go fix it. Make a call, go do something. See if you know I can switch rooms...
"My first instinct when I have a problem is not to tweet the world and tell them everybody about it because I'd rather problem solve."
Certainly, there have been issues within the bubble. That's not just in the WNBA, but some MLS and NBA players have voiced their frustrations - primarily with their food options - once they reached their own respective campus in Florida.
But Thibault wants there to be some restraint on the complaints and coverage. He says there are no bed bugs, as reported by Deadspin, and the league is moving quickly to fix some of the problems addressed by the players.
Not only does he think most of these issues will be corrected, but once the players get on the court things will change.
"Nothing's going to be ideal in quarantine, I mean our players really haven't had a chance to go and see the campus much and do everything else because they've basically been in their rooms and you know that's not fun for anybody to be cooped up but it's part of a show that everybody's safe," Thibault said.
Thursday afternoon is the first opportunity for some WNBA players to leave their rooms. All individuals entering the bubble must quarantine for four to seven days before stepping foot on campus. Once quarantines are done, training camp for each team will begin.
"I think that you'll see as we get into practices and people get out about a little bit more on campus. That feeling of being cooped up will go away. You know it's a different environment. Nobody said this was going to be ideal and we certainly don't have the same amenities that maybe the NBA does but you know we also don't have that same kind of money coming into that helps pay for that so we're in a nice place."
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