Sunday, June 07, 2009

We're Still Here . . . and Glad We Are!

Game day began early for the remaining 324 season ticket holders who signed up in 1998, have renewed ever since (motto: "we're still here"), and thus survived all 11 previous seasons of the good, the bad and the ugly. We were treated to a private reception followed by the unveiling of a permanent tribute to the Mystics' "Founding Fans" -- complete with all of our names -- on the Main Concourse (across from Guest Services). The BasketCases and all the other Founding Fans we spoke with felt truly honored by the team's acknowledgement of our loyalty. What a great way to start an exciting home opener! Many thanks to COO Greg Bibb for making this happen.

Lest old acquaintances -- and old teammates -- be forgot . . . new Mystics Asst Coach Vicky Bullett and new Atlanta star Chamique Holdsclaw share a hug.

An elaborate home-opener introduction . . . complete with silhouette screen, runway with flashing lights, smoke and music special effects. Some pre-game excitement for what turned out to be a very exciting -- and fun -- afternoon.

If you are reading this post, you were likely at the game or watched the web cast, so you already know that Atlanta raced out to a big lead (22-8), but the Mystics battled right back -- pushing tempo, diving for every loose ball, dialing up the defensive intensity (17 steals today! ) -- and took a lead heading into the locker room at the half which they never relinquished, winning 77-71. Two games do not a season make, not by a long shot, but the re-made Mystics are so vastly different from last season's team it's astonishing. They are competitive, they hustle, they are playing a true "up tempo" game as Coach Plank promised. In short, they are fun to watch. In fact, we had more fun today than we did all of last season.

Chemistry 101 . . . Grade A+. Whether on the court or on the bench, all 11 players stayed very much in the action. It's clear they enjoy playing together and supporting each other.

The Architect-in-Chief of the remodeled Mystics (and writer), GM Angela Taylor (L).

Rookie Head Coach Julie Plank (still undefeated in WNBA regular season play!) and her veteran star, Alana Beard, who put on an explosive perfomance today and led all scorers with 27 points (plus 5 steals and 5 rbs)!

The fans weren't the only ones who left the arena happy. As the fans applauded, Tasha Humphrey and her teammates smiled, waved and applauded right back. We love this team!


Photo Credits: DC BasketCases

11 Comments:

At 9:33 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was pleasantly surprised with the way we fought back. That's something I'm not used to seeing! I think Atlanta had a lot of frustration fouls. Nikki Teasley was a total non-factor, Mique couldn't find her rhythm, and Izzie was just plain flat. Coco played well for the Dream, who really have turned around as a franchise with the help of the draft and a few other key acquisitions. We play them a bunch of times, so look for the series to be a good one!

 
At 9:35 PM, Blogger tervin said...

The only sadness I had today was the realization that some of my section mates had moved back a few rows, so they weren't right behind me.

Other than that, I loved everything I saw and had an awesome time. It was beautiful to see the intensity, hustle and, yes, FUN the team had today!

Many thanks and congratulations to you for your Founding Fan status :)

 
At 10:49 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great game, but I wonder what the outcome would have been if the Dream hadn't played that Double OT game the night before.

Kudos to Chamique on reaching 4k points in the arena where she scored so many.

 
At 5:30 AM, Blogger BasketCases said...

Like Atlanta, the Mystics also were playing the second half of a back to back on Sunday. In fact, Mohegan is so isolated that the Mystics had to take a 7 hour or so bus ride home after Saturday's game, and did not return to DC until the wee hours of Sunday morning.

-- BC

 
At 7:57 AM, Anonymous Stewart said...

Three things really jumped out at me yesterday. An earlier poster alluded to the fact that the team fought back to overcome that sluggish start. We all know that, in the past, if they got behind, the team would start to get down on itself. They didn't quit, at all! All I wanted to see this season is some sign that the team is turning things around and that's a huge one. Secondly, the defense forced all of those turnovers -- something unheard of with past Mystics teams. Lastly, we have awesome depth. Anyone can get hot on any given night ('Rissa Saturday, Tasha and Matee Sunday) and Alana doesn't have to carry the load. It's only two games, but I'm liking what I'm seeing thus far.

 
At 8:34 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Only 324 left? Didn't we have to have 7,000 season ticket holders to get a team in 1998? I'm one of the ones who gave up on the francise. I remember when the stadium was completely full.
Yesterday's game was terrific, I haven't enjoyed my self more since the early years. I have a six pack, but if the team effort keeps up, I just may have to return as a season ticket holder.

 
At 9:40 AM, Blogger posting-up said...

The Fan Wall is really cool... but after years of trying to get the organization's attention, my partner and I are still not on their Founders list. We were part of a large group that banded together to get a good seating block, and bought our tickets before the team was a reality. We have called, written, spoken to people in person, but (like Rodney Dangerfield) we still "don't get no respect."
It's like we don't exist to the organization 11 years later. :p

 
At 10:59 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would be interested to know how many seats are represented by those 324 names -- e.g., my name counts for two seats.

In other words, how many Founding Fannies are there?

 
At 1:03 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'll just say it is hard to keep accurate records of the early years when you were not the organization that owned or staffed the team. As for our effort yesterday-it is a new day in Mystics land. Diving on the floor for loose balls, a blocked shot from behind, a press on defense! Not folding! Not standing around and just watching Alana! I was beside myself, with joy!!

Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!

 
At 10:17 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

There are six of us who share two tickets, but -- for ligistical reasons -- mine is the only named listed as the season ticket holder. I wish I had known they were going to do this and I would have tried to get all of our names on the list.

 
At 8:30 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think Nakia's 5/6 free throws warrants mention, no?

 

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