Stephanie Ready to become first full-time female local NBA game color analyst

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We certainly have heard some superb women working as analysts of NBA games before. ESPN’s Dorris Burke steps in occasionally and is better than most in that chair. Both Ann Meyers and Nancy Lieberman have done some local work as well.

Now Stephanie Ready has been tapped to take the next step — she will be a full-time color analyst on Charlotte Hornets games on Fox Sports Southeast, something the team announced Thursday. Ready will work with play-by-play man Eric Collins and former Hornet standout player Dell Curry in a three-person booth.

Ready is going from sideline reporter to the booth (she also has and will continue with postgame shows on the network).

“I’ve had a love affair with the game of basketball for as long as I can remember, both as a player and a coach. I’m honored and excited to be able to share my passion for this sport with our audience,” Ready said in a statement. “FOX Sports and the Hornets have always taken pride in being innovative and forward-thinking. I’m extremely proud to be a part of history.”

This breaks another barrier around the NBA — young girls watching the games should see role models and know they can grow up to be part of an NBA franchise in a variety of capacities, not only someone who dances during timeouts.

But as an NBA League Pass junkie I’ll tell you why I’m happy — she’s good. She was a fantastic sideline reporter. Combine her with Curry in the booth and a rock-solid veteran play-by-play man in Collins and we should get some quality, insightful commentary and a broadcast worth watching. All local broadcasts have a bit of a homer feel (know your audience), but the best ones have a level-headed sense and a love of the game that shines through above all else. A lot of teams miss that boat. I could be watching a lot more Charlotte broadcasts this season.