The importance of Serena Williams

Originally Published: March 8, 2011
By Joel Drucker | Special to ESPN.com

It was already known that Serena Williams was not going to play the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells, Calif. This year marks the 10-year anniversary of a Williams title run marred by controversy and confusion.

But after Williams' announcement that her absence from tennis is the result of something even more troubling than the foot injury that's kept her out since Wimbledon, it's a good time for a deeper look at what's lacking in a tournament when she's not on the grounds. ...

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