Laetitia Guapo: "The Paris 2024 Games, a springboard for 3×3”

11 Mar 2024

Paris (FRANCE) -  A parity model. A booming discipline. One of the attractions of the Games. Many things are being said about 3x3 basketball.

Myth or reality? Laëtitia Guapo has accompanied the recent evolution of the discipline, from which she expects a new boost accelerator at the Paris 2024 Games.

Is there a before and after Tokyo 2020 for 3x3 basketball?  

Of course there was a before and after Tokyo for both 3x3 and its media coverage. A lot more people have started to know this incredible discipline, more and more people are following 3x3 now and that will be even more the case after Paris. Personally, it’s not my best memory because of the “chocolate medal” (4th place) but it was a learning curve and I grew from the experience, which was and still is useful to me today daily. Thanks to this 4th place, we also have the opportunity today to better prepare for 2024 and take our revenge. 

Can the Paris 2024 Games further change the discipline's image and popularity?  

It will definitely change the media coverage and popularity of the discipline. First of all, we can already see that the tickets sold out very quickly, which proves that it’s a popular discipline, its trendy and what people like nowadays. Namely fun, fast paced, spectacular and snappy. Parisians and the whole world will indulge in 3x3 for sure!  

With 4,000 daily fans expected at the Place de la Concorde in the heart of Paris, alongside all the other urban sports, it will be an amazing atmosphere for the players and fans.  

What else does 3x3 need to gain in popularity?  

Even more media coverage! But the Games are going to be a real springboard for this, that’s for sure! People are immediately hooked and fall in love with 3x3 as soon as they see it, even without knowing all the details. The rules are simple and as I said, it’s fun and dynamic!  

3x3 is flexible enough to be played anywhere by anybody. All you need is a hoop, a half-court, and six players. 

3x3 is presented as a model of parity. Is this an image or a reality?  

Reality! We are in the same conditions as the men, same hotels, same grounds, same rules, same ball and I think that the fans also like women's 3x3 basketball. FIBA’s women’s competitions like the FIBA 3x3 Women's Series also continue to grow and inspire the next young players coming through.  

You played basketball before taking up 3x3. Are the two sports comparable in terms of parity?   

It's difficult to provide a simple yes or no answer to your question. While the prize money disparity may be less pronounced in 3x3. France's initiative to professionalize women's 3x3 this year, in preparation for Paris 2024, is a positive step. Hopefully, this will inspire other teams to follow suit, leading to a more sustainable and thriving 3x3 ecosystem for women, beyond one-shot opportunities 

Have things changed much for female athletes since you started out in basketball? 

Definitely! There's been a big increase in recognition, with better salaries and in particular, prize money in 3x3. It's a far cry from when I started playing – then, countless tournaments earned me nothing. Thankfully, prize money not only appeared, but it's also steadily increasing. In 5v5, we have established professional contracts, similar to most jobs. Additionally, media coverage is growing, proving that fans love women's basketball too! In France, we're even closer to significant progress, as sectoral agreements specific to professional basketball players are about to be signed.