Day 10: Name the Player

Today is Day 10. Tif’eret sheb’gevurah. Beauty that emerges from strength.

All-American in high school.  Two-time national champion in college.  Voted the top collegiate point guard in the country three times.  College player of the year as a senior.  Number one draft pick.  Three championships in the pros.  Eleven All-Star appearances.  The all-time assists leader.  Four time Olympic gold medalist.  

You may be racking your brain.  “John Stockton?  But he never won a title.  It must be a guy who played back in the 1950s.  Slater Martin?  Dave Bing?”  Sorry, no.  This player did not play in the 1950s.  She is still playing to this day.  She won a WNBA title two years ago.  She plans to play in the 2020(ish) Olympics, even though she will be 40 years old.

If you were in a lab trying to create a basketball player like Sue Bird, combining the attributes of Day 10 of the Omer would be a good place to start:  strength, power, discipline, beauty, harmony, balance, and compassion.  Imagine the strength and power it takes to stand 5’9″ and not back down (she has broken her nose playing basketball countless times).  The discipline it takes to stay in peak physical condition while playing in the WNBA and overseas for two decades (oh by the way, she won the EuroLeague Championship five times).

And that is just what it took for her to get on the court.  Once she was there, she played with a beauty and a harmony and a balance rarely seen before.  16 WNBA seasons, 11 All-Star appearances, 8 All-WNBA teams, 3 championships, and guess how many seasons she averaged over 15 points?  Zero.  How could she score so little and be considered one of the greatest women’s basketball players ever?  I’ll let her peers explain:

But don’t get it twisted.  If her team needed her to score, like in the deciding game of the conference finals, she would score.

If you want to learn more about Sue Bird (spoiler alert:  her dad is Jewish & she is an Israeli citizen), or if you’ve just watched every show on every streaming service and want to put off cleaning your bathroom for a little longer, here you go:

Today’s guest post was written by my cousin Ben.


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