It’s a family affair in Hollywood.
‘Mike check, 1…2, 1…2. Chiney Ogwumike has gone from the Connecticut Sun to a Californian one to reunite with Stanford sister Nneka.
And in an instant the Candace Parker Sparks have plugged themselves in to this year’s favourite to be the HIGHER. FURTHER. FASTER, ‘Captain Marvel’ of the WNBA.
The Sparks are now illuminated by this former scorching Sun star, her former MVP sister, Candace, Point Goddess Chelsea Gray and hot clutch shooter Alana Beard. And that’s just for starters, before we get to the splinters that will stick in you from the bolstered bench. Or their seventh seal in this year’s draft, the Baylor made star Kalani Brown.
Looks like Laker legend and new coach Derek Fisher-no stranger to the closing seconds of the game himself-has a lot to light up from his sideline fuse.
The Sparks gave up a first round draft pick from next year’s 2020 lottery to get this former number one pick in the 2014 pick of players and it was well worth every spot. Chiney is a star in her prime now, whilst her sister Nneka is a veteran legend. Combine the two of them together on the same squad like their Stanford college alumni days and you have a one, two punch like the Sparks had in the legendary Lisa Leslie days alongside Candace Parker. Except the Los Angeles Sparks still have Parker. One of the best players in the league right now and for all time, giving them an even better big-three and superteam then they’ve ever had in their purple and gold coronation.
This is beautiful for a game that is all about family. From the Grant one to the Lopez twin peaks. Even sons inheriting the skills of their father from Gary Payton II to Tim Hardaway Jnr. To what’s to come from Bol Bol, Shareef O’Neal (let’s make this special and get him drafted to pops Lake Show) and Bronny.
Oh yeah and the Ball boys.
But nothing is quite as special as these sisters doing it for themselves and each other on the Lakers sister squad that now stands as its own in STAPLES like the California clashing Clippers.
After becoming Rookie of the Year, Chiney suffered through knee and Achilles injuries whilst playing in China which stunted her seasons. But in the last one this low post threat, bullied back in the paint with a 14 point average and half of that in rebounds with seven. Expect those stats that would be the perfect compliment to Candace and big sis to only improve anyway. As will the perimeter presence of the likes of All Star point Gray and Beard trimming down those shots from downtown Pico.
Peek at your 2019 WNBA champions. Because the best of the best Skylar Diggings-Smith and Breanna Stewart will join the legendary likes of Diana Taurasi and Maya Moore missing the majority if not in most cases all the forthcoming season. Which is such a shame, even if there is so much more talent on display in this expect great league. But with Storm’s weathered in Seattle and Dallas Wings clipped, these Sparks with the Fish that saved L.A. in charge are showing like in the Michael Cooper days they are more than just a legendary name plugged into their head coaching seat.
The stand for one of the best leagues in the greatest game and it’s next generation starts now.
Watch them make way and lead the charge in their game, their way.
And worthy of a Hollywood story, but a real household one, these sisters are each other keepers.
Sparks Storm Seattle, Vegas Aces Chicago In WNBA Playoffs
“I understand what the league is trying to do. But it’s just hard because if you’re a professional, you play your entire season to be out … in a game? I thought in the pros you really wanted to find out who the best was, and by doing that you do it in a series.”
Candace Parker was just taking to WNBA aficionado and one of the best sportswriters around Shea Serrano for 57 minutes for The Ringer this weekend about the drawbacks of the first round, one game elimination format in the WNBA Playoffs.
Those odds were in our CP3’s favour however this Sunday as the Los Angeles Sparks beat the Seattle Storm 92-69 in the 2019 WNBA Playoffs after a birthday candles like blowout first half.
Seattle were without their key players and the most dynamic duo in the league with current greatest Breanna Stewart and G.O.A.T. legend Sue Bird. But they still had Defensive Player Of The Year Natasha Hughes who lead the Storm’s front with 20 points.
But Coach Derek Fisher had too much Spark for the Storm with the Lakers sister team who did it for the L.A. and have proven for years now to be the perennial Los Angeles team when it comes to success as the 2016 champs sucker punch, knocked out the reigning ones on what looks like their own way to another one like Khaled.
They have their own dynamic duo in Candace Parker and Nneka Ogwumike. Or another one in Ogwumike and her sister Chiney twinning. Call it a big-three. Or even a Fantastic Four when sharp shooter Chelsea Gray is gunning for the purple and gold. Who needs the clutch of an NBA Playoff great like D-Fish coming off the bench when he’s leading a star unit that was firing on all cylinders in a blaze of gold glory last night.
Gray had a game high 21 to go along with 8 assists as she shared the table with Parker’s 11, 10 and 6 and 17 from Nneka. 10 days after beating the Storm by 34, they beat them again by 24 to seal their place in the Western Conference semifinals.
Meanwhile it was a much closer call in the dessert. As Liz Cambadge fresh off iconic SLAM and ESPN Body Issue magazine covers grabbed the headlines as she showed up to Sin City walking the tunnel catwalk in all black like orange wasn’t nothing for this Chicago Sky funeral march. The ace Aces also wore a matching black face mask like she was walking the streets of Tokyo, Japan. Before lighting up Chicago’s sky like Shibuya neon with 23 points, 17 rebounds and 6 blocks.
But the front of the page went to her teammate as after Kelsey Plum’s clutch 3rd quarter shot beat the buzzer and the one leg challenge in front of the Eurostep of Houston’s James Harden sitting courtside, LV took off like a rocket to win the game in the waning seconds. Dearica Hamby intercepted and stole Chicago’s Courtney Vandersloot’s pass with nine seconds to go and then just past the half court line with 7.5 seconds to go she threw up a Hail Mary and the Basketball God’s answered with a swish like there was no need for a LeBron James meme with his arms out and face in perplexed pain as the eternity left on the Basketball game clock didn’t matter.
Vegas bet it all on their new WNBA franchise (put it this way if Las Vegas get their own NBA franchise like UNLV, it will be because of the Aces and not the 2007 All Star Game) like the Aces did Hamby as her hands didn’t leave the top of her head in disbelief from the moment the buzzer rang to her postgame interview courtside. It could have gone a different way for with Frank assurace like Sinatra at the Sands it ended her way. If you didn’t know the name Dearica the Sixth Woman Of The Year is in bright lights in this Nevada town now.
And if that’s what the quarters are like imagine what the semis will show against the number one Washington Mystics and WNBA great Elena Delle Donne. Expect something legendary, because after beating Chicago for this Las Vegas team that is all aces, the skies the limit.
Expect A STAPLES Statue for WNBA Great Lisa Leslie
She caught the WNBA’s first ever dunk above the rim. She joined America’s yellow family on the couch for an appearance on ‘The Simpsons’ when Lisa met Lisa. As she did the greying legends like Shaquille O’Neal and Reggie Miller for Kyrie Irving’s ‘Uncle Drew’ movie. The ‘Coach Of The Year’ even won her first championship with the Triplets in Ice Cube’s Big3 league behind former NBA great Joe Johnson’s big three at the buzzer this weekend gone.
And now the Los Angeles Sparks legend and WNBA great who already has her 9 jersey up in the rafters with the banners she helped raise will join Shaq, Magic, Chick, Oscar and Wayne Gretzky as the first female athlete to have a statue outside Los Angeles STAPLES Centre arena.
That’s before Kobe people.
Don’t let the lipstick fool you.
Bronze awaits the iron woman of the WNBA in a year of power for women across all platforms. It’s been a great year for the women’s game, across all sports. In soccer the USA women’s team won the world cup, whilst Golden Boot top scorer from the spot Meg Rapinoe and Seattle Storm legend Sue Bird became the new power couple like her and Breanna Stewart on court for this new power generation.
Even Leslie’s Sparks are having a great season this Summer out in Los Angeles behind Laker legend Derek Fisher as Head Coach, whose job may one day be in jeopardy when it comes to the Triplets Big3 of Leslie. The Sparks are plugged in as Lisa’s former running mate Candace Parker is vying for the best purple and gold sister team of all time, if the twin ambition of the Ogwumike sisters aren’t doing that themselves for another big three.
But right now it’s time to give it up for a legend.
This women’s game has been official for over twenty years now and Lisa Leslie was there from the 1997 inauguration to her last season in 2009…and with Mamba Mentality, or Leslie legacy, she never took off the purple and gold. And now outside her old STAPLE she’ll never not wear bronze like sitting out in the California sun of Venice Beach.
Two championships. Three league MVPs. Four Olympic Gold medals. And now one monument to the wonder woman who left the league Kareem leading it all time in points and rebounds, with across the board averages of 17.3 points, 9.1 rebounds and 2.3 blocks.
And if you thought those numbers were good, how about great? How about Laker legend Wilt stilting numbers? Because back in high school with Inglewood Morningside High she once went for 101 points in a single game.
Now what do you have to say about the women’s game? She isn’t just one of the greatest players in the women’s game. She’s one of the greatest regardless of gender in any sport, all time.
Now does she deserve a statue?
Subscribe to our Newsletter!
Canadian Basketball Insider Newsletter
FIBA3 weeks ago
Canada announces final 12-man roster for 2019 FIBA World Cup
FIBA3 weeks ago
Australia hand USA first loss since 2006, ending 78 game winning streak
FIBA3 weeks ago
USA pounds Canada in final 2019 FIBA World Cup tune-up
FIBA2 weeks ago
Lithuania end Canada’s 2019 FIBA World Cup dream
FIBA2 weeks ago
Australia too much for Canada in 2019 FIBA World Cup opener
NBA4 days ago
After A Big Three In The BIG3, Triplet Joe Johnson Is Back
NBA2 weeks ago
Timberwolves sign Canadian rookie Lindell Wigginton
FIBA2 weeks ago
Canada beat Senegal scoop-up first World Cup win since 2002