Philadelphia Freedoms

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This article is about the tennis team currently playing in WTT. For the team of the same name that played in WTT in 1974, see Philadelphia Freedoms (1974).
Philadelphia Freedoms
Philly Freedoms.png
Founded 1974
Current season 2016
League World TeamTennis
Team history Philadelphia Freedoms
1974, 2001–present
Based in Radnor Township, Pennsylvania
Stadium Cabrini College (2001-2007)
King of Prussia Mall (2008-2009)
The Pavilion (2010-Present)
Colors Bright Venetian red, white, international Klein blue
              
Owner(s) Billie Jean King
Head coach Josh Cohen
Championships 2001, 2006
Mascot Nettie King

The Philadelphia Freedoms is a tennis team currently competing in World TeamTennis.

Overview[edit]

For more details on the original Philadelphia Freedoms franchise, see Philadelphia Freedoms (1974).

The team traces its origins to WTT's inaugural season, in 1974. The original team starred tennis legend and social pioneer Billie Jean King, who had beaten Bobby Riggs in the "Battle of the Sexes" the previous year.

Other members of the team were: Fred Stolle (Australia), Brian Fairlie (New Zealand), Buster Mottram (U.K.), Julie Anthony (US), Tory Ann Fretz (US), Betsy Nagelsen (US) and Kathy Kuykendall (US).

Julie Anthony later married the owner of the team, Dick Butera, and they settled in Aspen, Colorado, where she practices as a sports psychologist. Nagelsen married the late Mark McCormack, the Founder and Chairman of International Management Group. McCormack who represented Tiger Woods and Michael Jordan amongst others, was often referred to as one of the most powerful men in sports. Mottram was a controversial figure who spoke publicly about his extreme right wing views and made unsuccessful attempts to become a Conservative candidate for the British Parliament. Stolle was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 1985. Fretz was inducted into the Intercollegiate Tennis Hall of Fame in 1999.

Pop singer Elton John was a friend of Billie Jean King's, and was invited to participate in a promotional match during one of the team's games. In return, he was later inspired to write a song about King, also called "Philadelphia Freedom." In 1974, the Freedoms had the league's best regular-season record, but were upset by the Denver Racquets in the championship game. The following year, the Freedoms merged with the Boston Lobsters (also a 2006 member of WTT).

The current team joined WTT in 2001. Before the beginning of the 2008 season, the Philadelphia Freedoms announced they would be leaving their previous home at Cabrini College. Their home matches would be played at the tennis stadium outside the King of Prussia Mall in King of Prussia, Pennsylvania (located near Philadelphia) from 2008 to 2009. For 2010, the Freedoms announced they would move to The Pavilion on the campus of Villanova University.

Current squad[edit]

2016 Season[edit]

The Philadelphia Freedoms' 2016 season will once again be played at the Villanova University Pavilion. Olympian Caroline Wozniacki will be playing one away match with the team against the New York Empire, and then she will join the Freedoms for their home opener in Philadelphia.[1] The opening match will feature an Olympic Send-Off Party for Wozniacki.[2] The Freedoms will also host Andy Roddick, who will play for the New York Empire at Philadelphia.

The team will play 12 regular season matches. The schedule is as follows:

July 31: Philadelphia Freedoms vs. Springfield Lasers @ Springfield

August 1: Philadelphia Freedoms vs. New York Empire @ New York

August 2: Philadelphia Freedoms vs. Springfield Lasers @ Philadelphia (feat. Caroline Wozniacki - PHL)

August 3: Philadelphia Freedoms vs. Washington Kastles @ Washington

August 4: Philadelphia Freedoms vs. Springfield Lasers @ Philadelphia

August 6: Philadelphia Freedoms vs. Springfield Lasers @ Springfield

August 7: Philadelphia Freedoms vs. Orange County Breakers @ Orange County

August 8: Philadelphia Freedoms vs. San Diego Aviators @ San Diego

August 10: Philadelphia Freedoms vs. New York Empire @ Philadelphia (feat. Andy Roddick - NYE)

August 11: Philadelphia Freedoms vs. Washington Kastles @ Philadelphia

August 12: Philadelphia Freedoms vs. Orange County Breakers @ Philadelphia

August 13: Philadelphia Freedoms vs. San Diego Aviators @ Philadelphia[3]

2015 Season[edit]

Once again, the Freedoms hosted seven home matches at the Villanova Pavilion. Serena Williams was drafted to play for the Washington Kastles at Philadelphia on July 20, 2015, but sustained an elbow injury that prevented her from playing.[4] The Bryan Brothers and Eugenie Bouchard played for the California Dream and the Boston Lobsters, respectively, at Philadelphia in the last two home matches.[5]

The Freedoms made it into the Eastern Conference Finals against the Washington Kastles. In a game played on the Kastles' home court, the Freedoms lost 25-9 and fell short of making it into the championship match.[6]

2014 Season[edit]

The Philadelphia Freedoms played 13 regular season matches in the 2014 season, and hosted 7 of them at the Villanova Pavilion. Victoria Azarenka played for the Freedoms against the San Diego Aviators; Andy Roddick also made an appearance at a home match, playing for the Austin Aces.[7]

The Freedoms made it into the playoffs but lost to the Washington Kastles before they could reach the Eastern Conference Finals, achieving their best season since 2007. Team member Marcelo Melo was named the 2014 WTT MVP.[8]

2013 Season[edit]

The Philadelphia Freedoms competed in 14 matches throughout the 2013 World TeamTennis season. They hosted seven home matches at the Villanova Pavilion featuring marquee players including: Andy Roddick, Sloane Stephens, John McEnroe, Martina Hingis and Bob and Mike Bryan. Coached by Josh Cohen, the Freedoms fell short of a playoff run and ended the 2013 season with a record of 5-9.

During the 2013 season, the Philadelphia Freedoms also welcomed a new member to their team. They unveiled their new mascot, Nettie, at their home opener against the Springfield Lasers with the help of World TeamTennis co-founder Billie Jean King.

2012 Season[edit]

The Philadelphia Freedoms competed in the 2012 World TeamTennis season. The Freedoms hosted seven home matches at the Villanova Pavilion and competed in seven away matches. This season featured marquee players including: James Blake, Ryan Harrison, John McEnroe, Mark Philippoussis, Bob and Mike Bryan, and Martina Hingis. This was head coach Josh Cohen's first season leading the Freedoms. The Freedoms ended their season with a record of 5-9.

Former Freedoms Players[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "World TeamTennis". WTT.com. Retrieved 2016-07-06. 
  2. ^ "The Philadelphia Freedoms — Freedoms announce 2016 FreedomFest Theme Night...". The Philadelphia Freedoms. Retrieved 2016-07-06. 
  3. ^ "Check Out the 2016 Philadelphia Freedoms Schedule!". myemail.constantcontact.com. Retrieved 2016-07-06. 
  4. ^ "Freedoms Announce Home & Visiting Team Updates". WTT.com. Retrieved 2016-07-06. 
  5. ^ "2015 Home Schedule Highlighted by Marquee Visits from Serena, Bryans & Bouchard". WTT.com. Retrieved 2016-07-06. 
  6. ^ "Freedoms Fall To Kastles In Eastern Conference Final". The Philadelphia Freedoms. Retrieved 2016-07-06. 
  7. ^ "Grand Slam Champions highlight Philadelphia Freedom's 2014 schedule". Retrieved 2016-07-06. 
  8. ^ "Freedoms Fall To Kastles 21-16 In Eastern Conference Finals". The Philadelphia Freedoms. Retrieved 2016-07-06. 

External links[edit]