What a wonderful All-Star weekend in Chicago. It was pretty good that the city where I got to start my career was where I had the chance to play my last All-Star Game.
There was so much to do before the actual game with media availability, practice and then when we left the arena I had a full day of events ahead.
My agency had organized a tea party for me – something to honor everything I’ve done in my career. At first, I confess that I didn’t really want to do it, but they insisted. I had to invite people, so I brought some of my friends from Chicago along with Coach (Cheryl) Reeve and his family.
As hesitant as I was at first, I’m so glad they convinced me to do it because it was really cool. We had a private room in a hotel where they had so many teas. I love tea by the way. They brought out the china as well as these awesome cupcakes.
It was very fun.
Then I went back to the hotel to get ready for the Chance the Rapper concert. I met Napheesa Collier and we had a great time. The atmosphere, the loud music, the people jumping. The music was good and the energy was awesome.
Then it was off to bed getting ready for the game.
I will always remember the reaction of the crowd during my presentation. They’ve been with me since day one and they’ve always stood by me, even when I left for Minnesota. They showed me crazy love and didn’t hate me and I can’t thank them enough. These are my irreducible.
Now I know everyone was talking about the 3 and the dunk. The coach drew the 3 in the locker room for the first game and at first I was like what was going on, but I was happy to do it. Coach (Cheryl) Reeve always dares me to shoot them and I say no. In the game, I thought to myself why not?
When he walked in, I saw how happy everyone was and that made me happy.
As for the dunk, honestly, I didn’t give it much thought when I was tackling it. I just realized why not? And then seeing everyone’s reaction afterwards is something I will always remember how happy I made them.
The hardest thing for me during the game was when they honored me and Sue Bird. It’s always scary for me. I never feel comfortable when people are kind enough to honor me. Although the more it happens, the more I have learned to accept it and be grateful for it.
The other hard part was knowing that my sister Brittney Griner wasn’t there with us. Wearing her name and number on our second-half shirts ensures she won’t be forgotten. We still have work to do to bring her home. We must continue to spread the word.
The last memory I will remember is when Sue gave me the ball after it was over. She said you deserved it for the way you played. This will have a special place in my house next to the autographed ball the players signed for me.
After the game, I made a quick stop at the Nike Nationals pit to see the Fowles team play. Unfortunately, they lost, but we had fun chatting afterwards and I was able to catch up with my old coach at LSU Bob Starkey.
He is now back in Minnesota preparing for the rest of the season to make a playoff push.
Minnesota Lynx star Sylvia Fowles comes out periodically during her senior season in the WNBA with The Associated Press.
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