Watching the Olympics always evokes a sense of nostalgia in me, especially when I tune into the US Women’s Basketball Team. It brings back memories of the excitement I had as a 12 year old rushing home to catch the 1996 Women’s Olympic team play. I had only just started to get into basketball and if there was anytime for a young girl to start gaining an interest in basketball, 1996 was a good year.
The WNBA was founded in the April right before the start of the Atlanta Summer games and we were sending collegiate legends like Lisa Leslie, Dawn Staley, Rebcca Lobo and Sheryl Swoops (I even owned a pair of the Nike Swoops shoes) to represent our country. And of course, lets not forget that 1996 would mark the beginning of the US Women’s dominance in the Olympic games.Sadly, women’s basketball is rarely given the attention it deserves. With all the dominant US sports teams/individuals competing in the games, women’s basketball is hardly on anyone’s “watch list”. This is unfortunate considering this year’s team holds some of the most talented females to ever play the game of basketball: Candace Parker, Tamika Catchings, Sue Bird- just to name a few. Sunday, Diana Taurasi, one of the top players in WNBA history, scored 22 points which aided her team in its 38th consecutive olympic win. Additionally, the team set two American Olympic records with 33 assists which led to a milestone of 52 baskets thus obliterating the Chinese team in a 114-66 win.
Tomorrow, Tuesday, at 9am ET the 2012 teams goes up against Canada in the quarterfinals. A win tomorrow will put the US in a strong position to battle in the finals for their 5th straight gold medal. This team is history in the making and I for one will be sure to tune in to lend my support to a team that has been put in the time, dedication, and heart to be so rightly named: “the best team in the world”.