Thursday, June 21, 2012

Last night, the 2-6 Washington Mystics arrived at US Airways Arena, home to the 2-7 Phoenix Mercury . . . for a “battle” between two teams that have experienced pretty dismal starts to their seasons. The Merc, at least, have a good excuse for their lop-sided losing record. First, they lost All-Star Penny Taylor to injury even before the season began. Then, two games into the 2012 regular season, All-World Diana Taurasi was sidelined with a hip injury. Last night, the Merc were even more depleted, as both Candice Dupree and Nakia Sanford joined Penny and Dee on the bench -- in street clothes -- nursing their own injuries. That left the Merc with just 8 players; for all intents and purposes, the Mystics were playing DeWanna Bonner and the Phoenix bench. 

Yet, even against that lineup, somehow the Mystics still lost. Up by 3 points at the start of the 4th quarter, and leading by 5 with 2:26 left in the game, the Mystics could not hold onto the lead. Once again, they could not finish, and the Merc won, 80-77 -- handing the Mystics their 13th consecutive loss on the road. Phoenix rookie Samantha Prahalis scored 7 points in the final two minutes and 2 seconds. 

The BCs simply DO NOT BELIEVE that Crystal Langhorne, Monique Currie, Matee Ajavon, and their teammates do not have the talent or the desire to beat the Phoenix Mercury bench. Nope, WE AREN’T BUYING IT. It’s one thing to get blown out, on the road, by L.A. -- a team stocked with some pretty talented players. But losing to the Mercury bench? Uh-uh, something is very wrong here. 

We’ve been to a couple of games this season. We’ve seen for ourselves that there’s still a small, but hardcore, group of fans who, unlike the BCs, are living and dying over the Mystics. We feel for them. We really do. We’ve read their comments on the Mystics’ Facebook page. And they are suffering. Undoubtedly, the players are suffering, too. 

These fans love the Mystics. They deserve better. These Mystics players are trying . . . they deserve better. The city deserves better. The WNBA deserves better. 

No player letters to the Coach will solve this problem.  No player detentions, or writing “I must try harder” a hundred times on the White Board, will solve this problem. The buck -- and any chance of solving this problem -- stops, not with the players, but up the food chain . . . with the Mystics’ front office.


At 6:30 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Amen, Amen!!!!

At 9:58 PM, Anonymous nsw43 said...

BCs -

Can you think of a POSITIVE end- game for this mess? I cannot.

If the problem lies with the Front Office, and we all know it does, then the only answer is to change the Front Office. That means Sheila Johnson relinquishing her hold on the team.

I cannot imagine that she would do so and continue to be an investor. Ted L. has clearly turned over virtually all decision-making to Sheila. Can't see him stepping in if she backs off.

That leads me to think the only end game for the Mystics is for Sheila to fold the franchise after it becomes clear that nobody is going to pay to come see this ragtag bunch.

I suppose if the Mystics win the lottery and get Griner, there would be something to market next year. But all that does is prolong the end. An awful GM and Coach, even with a superstar, cannot create a winning team.

Can you see a positive way forward?

At 12:34 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well the last hope for Mystics fans is that Sheila Johnson is a real person, and not just a bag of GREED in a Sheila outfit. I keep hoping, but, "the past is prologue".

At 11:18 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I do like the Mystics, currently still support the cause - but it is frustrating to see this team play with SUCH a lack of chemistry and lack of heart. The win against Indiana was a desperation hold - buzzer could not come fast enough; I about threw my Ipad down as I saw the phoenix game slide away. We are not even in LA's league now (but it was nice to see some of our old players...I digress.) I think these games are signs of a bigger issue.

The analogy I would use is a poorly maintained car that is failing mechanically, running low on gas too and may not survive.

Were Trudi to go, how many good coaches would want to come into this? Really, right now - how attractive is this team for any player with 'robust' choices.

We pulled in lots of parts in the offseason (some doing well - go Ms Snow!) but it still feels like that -a group of parts.

I don't subscribe to the greed/ money, conspiracy issue per se. Have you seen how very empty Verizon Center looks at home games - it is depressing and I am sure making no one any money. I have to believe there is some threshold/ exit strategy there for Monumental.

I applaud the team for the social mission they have pursued. Without that, I feel like there is so little to this team that is compelling at all.

It is a strange dynamic to be 'celebrating' 15 years for the Mystics and yet feel like this franchise is really gasping and facing such a questionable future.

I want to say a coaching change is the answer, "we are one player away", etc. But I am afraid it is more than that.

Each of these disappointing losses feel like painful miles on the odometer. I fear we are getting to the point where, even with small fixes now, the car just won't run.

At 2:50 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

BCs, I never thought I would say this but I'm now with you--it's just not fun anymore. Unless there's a big change this is my last year as a Season Ticket holder. Not only are games a disaster but no transation with the front office is easy--I ALWAYS have to follow up because someone has lost my information. Honestly, they can't be trying to keep track of all that many people.
I just pulled my very old Mystics bumper sticker off my car. I'm tired of summers being defined by frustration with the Mystics.

At 4:05 PM, Blogger dcsportsfan said...

I think everyone knows Trudi has gotta be fired ASAP, and there really is no good time to do it, but when is the best time to fire her without causing too much distraction to the team?

Typically it's not done during a road trip, so it seems that Trudi will be allowed to keep coaching through the Seattle game on Sunday. One possible day to fire her is on Monday, but depending on flights, etc., it may not be a good time to disrupt the players either. The next game just happens to be against Seattle at home as well, but there are two days in between that game and the Friday game vs. Connecticut. If ownership gives a darn about the basketball product of the Mystics, rather than the novelty aspect, they need to fire her by next Wednesday.

Only question is, what happens if the Mystics either split the series with the Storm, or sweep it? The Storm hasn't played well this season even though they did win two in a row this past week.

I really don't have faith in the Mystics front office, which happens to be the head coach too. None whatsoever.

At 8:45 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

How wants to coach in DC? That's the question. Can they get a good coach to come here. Who want want to work for Sheila Johnson. Not me.... I don't even know how the Mystics survive as an organization for much longer. They had a chance with Julie Plank and Angela Taylor--a real chance--to become an elite team. The pieces were there. I watch all sports and I've never seen an organization like the Mystics that make such poor decisions. Unfortunately, because it's the WNBA, no one knows. SHeila Johnson is touted by the league as something special in a good way. When in fact, she clearly knows nothing about women's basketball and is a horrible leader--inept at running any sports organization. Yet, they tout her as great. It's a shame and it's embarrassing as a knowledgable women's basketball fan.

At 2:56 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If they do fire Trudi I suspect it will be during the Olympics. That gives the team time to coalesce around someone new. Even if Sheila doesn't see a problem here you'd think the sponsors would be making some noise. I can't imagine they're happy about a losing team with a shrinking fan base. I can't understand a formula where so much continues to ride on keeping Trudi in as coach--it's not like she has a good track record and they're just waiting for her to hit her stride.

At 5:41 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Doubt that anyone will read this since the original post is so old, but it feels better to have my say. Ted Leonsis sent an letter to season ticket holders last October, recapping 2011 and promising a better season in 2012....saying how much respect and faith he had in Trudi Lacey as Coach and GM. I kept the letter - and just responded to it. Yep -sent a letter to Ted, for what it's worth, lamenting the squandered fan base (we went from winning attendance records to maybe 3000 attendees!!) and asking him to please fire Trudi. Maybe if enough of us did that ....

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

Trudi destroyed the Charlotte Sting and we lost the team. She is a marginal coach at best. I remember when I was a Mystic fan we had 15000 fans each game. When I see them on tv the seats are empty. It really doesnt matter who take over---trudi needs to go


Post a Comment

<< Home