Sunday, April 16, 2006

Love and Basketball

I wanted her to win it all. Cut up my skin and you'll see that I bleed Lady Vol orange. But inside, deep inside, I was rooting for her. Because she came back. Unlike Chris Paul, she turned down the pros despite knowing she would be a top 3 pick (also because the money aint the same in the W as it is in the L). But she never once regretted that decision. Because she has one of the meanest scowls in college basketball. I loved that look on her face. Because she is one of only three players in the WNBA who graduated with a master's degree. Because she wanted a chance to have that one shining moment. And just like that, I was sold on Monique Currie.

So when the Lady Terps threw up the ball in the air as time expired on the night of April 4th, I mourned. Just like the ESPN dude (Trey Wingo) beside Kara Lawson and Stacy Dales-Schuman said, "Youth is served." The unsurmountable exuberance of Maryland players, fans, and coaches was not enough to keep my gaze off her. Mo, sitting on the bench...eyes welling up....with a look of frustration (still not regret). And for the first time, I hated the look on Mo's face. Because I wanted her to win it all.

This piece maybe 2-weeks overdue, but I never forgot that look. The next day came. The day she chose to forego the previous year. The day after the most devastating day of her college career. And with the 3rd pick, the Charlotte Sting easily became my new favourite team.

p.s. Even with the emergence of the CPs (Candace Parker, Courtney Paris), the WNBA's tenth anniversary and extra media coverage, it was actually quite a sad season for women's basketball. R.I.P. Sue Gunter, Shawntinice Polk and Maggie Dixon. You are deeply missed.


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