By: Jeffrey Newholm
Chicago is home of several of the country’s best sports teams. From the Blackhawks to the Bears, and the Sky; wait, the who? With the Bulls penned into a dirty sty, the more critical basketball franchise battled to a 105-78 triumph Sunday. The Sky have fought to the fifth WNBA seed and desire acclaim as a viable Windy City entertainment selection. And with the league’s most fun players, surely it’s a reasonable argument.
Chicago sports a 12-5 record at beautiful Wintrust Arena. But, you argue, every pro arena is gorgeous? Wintrust, however, is terrific in its ambiance and cheer. It’s also perfectly sized for a more modest (for now) WNBA crowd. And prices for the best seats still outshoot the worst Bulls tickets by hundreds. Better yet, the product on the court is a more excellent draw.
Point Guard Courtney Vandersloot leads the team. She set the WNBA record for assists in a season with four games left, breaking her record. Also, partner Allie Quigley electrifies with jump shots, and Diamond DeShields provides hustle and athleticism. When one considers Stefanie Dolson’s showwomanship and style (even calling herself her fashion idol), it’s certain Chicago places first in endearment.
The 27-point rout of Phoenix left little desired. Phoenix’s Diana Taurasi treated the game as a walk-through, while Vandersloot emphatically demanded a win. With new coach James Wade energetically requesting improved detail, Chicago further established itself as genuine playoff contenders. Granted, they may not be ready for a championship in 2019. But the Sky is erasing clouds of doubt from the skeptics’ atmosphere, and those looking at shoes had best soon notice a midwest sports emergence.