Thursday, October 18, 2018
Page 748

Mystics Nakia Sanford balances ball with charity work

Very mature, very commendable on her part.

Her road-trippin team is glad to be home to play LA tomorrow.

A more complete list of summer club ball tournaments

The NCAA-certified list is the best.

So many good tourneys there that my head might explode.

Nice reflective pice here on the End of the Trail Tourney in Oregon City.

Storm name all-decade team

Not only did the Seattle Storm beat the Sacramento Monarchs tonight, the Storm organization announced their All-Decade Team. Fans voted for the selections, in commemoration of the tenth year of the team. The roster:

Kamila Vodichkova
Lauren Jackson
Sue Bird
Betty Lennox
Adia Barnes
Tully Bevilaqua
Simone Edwards
Iziane Castro-Marques
Janell Burse
Swin Cash

Vodi, Jackson, Bird, Lennox, Barnes, Bevilaqua, Edwards and Burse are obvious selections to me, either for their court performances or off- and on-court personas and contributions. But I’m not sold on Cash or Castro-Marques. Cash has been with the team not even two seasons, and her performance has been less than stellar. Castro-Marques was nice, but she did nothing special for the Storm during her tenure.

I would have picked Sheri Sam and Tanisha Wright. In the case of each player, the team couldn’t have done it without them many times. That should be one of the main criteria for an all-decade team member.

Sparks win a road game! (and other stuff)

If anyone told me last spring that it would take a month into the season before the Sparks won a road game, I’d have said they were nuts. But so be it. I’ll take tonight’s 69-60 win over the Liberty.

Interesting starting lineup in Tina Thompson, Delisha Milton-Jones, Candace Parker, Marie Ferdinand-Harris and Shannon Bobbitt. Betty Lennox scored 20 points off the bench and Kristi Harrower, 4.

For the first few minutes of the game, though, I was wondering what the hell the Sparks were doing. Glad they got it together.

Assistant Coach Marianne Stanley weighs in with her thoughts on the season so far in an interview released today.

In the Sparks MVP newsletter of today, fans are given humorous player facts collected on the road trip so far:

– Marie Ferdinand-Harris has a shoe deal with Reebok and her shoes that are made up in purple and gold have “MFH 24” on the tongue. She has had this shoe deal for the past four years.

– The team has a nickname for Betty which is “Big Buckets Betty.” The name means that she has her game face on and is ready to drop “Big Buckets” on our opponent.

– While riding down the escalator at our hotel with DeLisha on Wednesday, she mentioned that we had another whole night in New York and that this big city was a little too much for her. She likes New York and that all the different cultures co-exist here but in her exact words, “there is TOO much going on here for me!”

– Madison Square Garden, located on 7th Avenue in New York, is one of the oldest and most well-known arenas in the world and even to us it’s still a tourist attraction. Candace Parker took time before shootaround on Thursday to get a picture of baby Lailaa on the floor next to the MSG logo.

– Tina Thompson is not just an incredible basketball player; it seems that she is also wise when it comes to motion sickness. She shared that she sits in the middle of the bus because she gets motion sickness from time to time. Her advice to thwart it:
1. Sit in the middle of the bus
2. Don’t read
3. Don’t stare at one thing for long periods of time
4. If you are listening to music try to close your eyes

– Bobbitt and Vanessa listen to their music at a higher decibel than should be legally allowed. Whether we’re on the bus, in the airport or stuck on the slowest freight elevator in history, we can all get down to their music because it seems as though it’s on a loud speaker. This morning in the freight elevator at MSG, we were all jamming to Beyonce’s Halo courtesy of Vanessa.

– Coach Stanley has the hook-up! Having spent time in both NY and D.C., she knows a lot of the ins and outs for getting around NYC, getting discounted show tickets and even how to get from inside the Garden to an underground NY pizza joint. If you are headed to NY anytime soon, make sure you ask Coach Stanley for tips.

And finally, Candace Parker’s ESPN commercial is out.

Tennessee’s Amber Gray transferred to Cincinnati hospital

The forward suffered complications after shoulder surgery last week, so she’s being moved to an out-of-state hospital.

Wow. UT has a good hospital, too. I wonder what’s up?

Dan Hughes, Lin Dunn to coach WNBA All-Star game

It should be interesting, seeing two who used to coach together coach against one another. Game is July 25.

Courtney Paris “wasn’t familiar with a lot of the WNBA players”?

In an interview published in today’s Oklahoman, former Sooner and Monarchs rookie Courtney Paris says she’s unhappy with her minutes. But at the same time, she confesses:

“I can’t honestly say I was familiar with a lot of the players and what they do,” she said. “In the summers, I was doing stuff, so it’s not like I paid attention as much to the WNBA.

I wish that were an uncommon perspective, but I’ve found that it’s not. Plenty of female high school basketball players don’t watch many WNBA games, and/or don’t know who key players are even if they don’t tune in. I can think of only one girl off the top of my head who I can have an intelligent conversation with about WNBA players.

It’s definitely a classic mistake of youth – being unprepared. And it can be somewhat overlooked in high school. But if you’re one of the top collegiate players in the country for practically all four years at your school, and it looks like the WNBA will want to draft you when you’re done, you should have thought to start checking up on the players and the games earlier.

A good charitable cause

Normally I’d say two posts in one day about one’s hometown WNBA team would be too “homerish.” But today the Sparks posted a story on their web page about their trip to the Jenesse Center – a shelter for battered women and children. The Sparks will partner with the Center and with Home Sweet Home, and sealed the deal by helping renovate some apartments last week. On the Sparks home page, there’s a picture of team members with Halle Berry.

Now that’s a good cause to get behind.

Ah, to live in NYC

Great pics on Sportspagemag of the West 4th Street Women’s Pro Classic from this past Saturday.

The Nike West 4th St Pro Classic Women’s Basketball Summer League runs annually. Exodus (A) is one of several Exodus teams that is coached by former Scarlet Knight Epiphanny Prince’s AAU coach. Besides Prince, featured players are Erica Morrow (Syracuse), Shennika Smith (incoming St. John’s freshman), and Samantha Prahalis – once she returns from USA Basketball.

It would be fun to just be able to walk down the street and catch this league in action on a given day.

Candace Parker is a “celebrity mom”

Nice interview with And a CP promo ad for public libraries on the top left. Very nice all the way around.

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