There is a changing of the guard in professional basketball.
No, I’m not talking about the ‘Clover Boys’ in Boston; I’m talking about the ladies in Mo’Town. The Detriot Shock of the WNBA.
That’s right, the WNBA.
As the eight team playoff was cut down to four Tuesday night, the Shock, the defending WNBA champion, is the top seeded team in the Eastern Conference with a league best 24-10 record. undoubtedly they are the favorite to repeat as champions and in doing so, giving them their third title in four years.
The WNBA isn’t unfamiliar with dynasties. In fact, a dynasty was formed right along with the league’s inception. The Houston Comets, led by the great Cynthia Cooper and Sheryl Swoops (who as a side note had her own shoe with Nike) won four straight WNBA titles from ’97-2000, the first four years that the league was in existence.
Then from ’01-’02, it was Los Angeles’ turn as the Sparks, led by Lisa Leslie, won back-to-back titles. And now, it’s Detriot’s time.
But there’s something different about this impending dynasty. Where as both the Comets and the Sparks have fizzled out over the years, the Shock seems to have staying power; sort of like the Spurs after Tim Duncan arrived and the Patriots with Brady. Neither of these teams win a championship year after year but like a rabid animal they’re a threat to win it every year and that’s what makes them dangerous.
It isn’t a coincidence that the current Detriot dynasty began when two legends from a past Detriot dynasty took control.
When Bill Laimbeer took over as coach for the Shock in 2002, he asked former teammate Rick Mahorn to join the staff. In ’03, the Shock won their first title.
So far in this post-season, the Shock lost Game 1 to the New York Liberty, jumped out to a 17-point lead in Game 2 only to hold on to win by three. When the series was set and done, the Shock held on to win 71-70 in OT in Game to advance to the Eastern Conference finals.
The march to destiny continues…