When I talk to young girls, I think back to when I was 12 years old and I had just moved to Texas from Alabama. My dad took me to a Houston Comets game and that was it. I told him right then that I wanted to play in the WNBA.
In January 1991 I attended my father's funeral after he died from complications related to AIDS. Attending the funeral was a different experience for me, as I was just one month shy of my fourth birthday.
There is no doubt that in its 15th year, the WNBA continues to represent something more than just another pro basketball league. It also has become a social instrument for how we view women athletes in the professional team sports world.
From setting a franchise record with 27 wins to tying the league's all-time single-season record for road wins to enjoying our best season attendance-wise since our inaugural season in 1999, this year has provided numerous unforgettable memories.
My sister found her passion in the Army. She fell in love with the camaraderie and challenge she found, first becoming an Arabic linguist and then a Blackhawk pilot. As I was preparing for the 2006 WNBA Finals, my sister was also preparing for battle -- the real one.
My faith plays a part in everything I do on and off the court. From coming early to practice to taking extra shots or staying afterwards to work on my free throws -- my faith inspires me to work harder and harder each day.
When the Raiders chose Ohio State quarterback Terrelle Pryor yesterday in the supplemental draft, you probably went "duh." No player has been too troubled or overrated for the black and silver to take a flyer on.
As a WNBA player and a person with a family history of diabetes, I understand the importance of an active lifestyle. And as a Dribble to Stop Diabetes program ambassador, I am encouraging fans to understand their risk for developing or living with diabetes.
The WNBA is firmly entrenched on the global sports landscape. Games are broadcast in more than 200 countries and territories, the league trends strongly on Twitter on game nights, and it has become the destination for the most talented female players in the world.
"I have six girls that I really mentor... I'll pick them up and just spend time with them because I'd rather them be with me, a positive role model, than... doing something that could possibly get them in trouble."
Because the WNBA season isn't very long, I do everything I can to make sure I'm as healthy as I can be for those 4-5 months. Eating right, daily weight training sessions, and extra sleep are all part of the routine.
I was a little girl growing up with a hearing problem, speech problem and big hearing aids enveloping my ears. I vowed never to go back to school but when my parents kept telling me I had to go back to get smart, I chose the next best thing: sports!