Swoopes won the MVP award for posting 20.7 points, 6.3 rebounds, 3.8 assists and 2.8 steals per game. The WNBA's first-ever Coach of the Year recipient, Van Chancellor gives Cynthia Cooper instructions on the sideline. Yet, after winning her fourth title, Cooper opted against pursuing a five-peat. I’ve told her even if she’s not scoring, just being out there on the floor, teams have to pay attention to her, and that allows other people a chance to step up offensively.”. The Comets, of course, were involved in the fight for the title after tallying a 27-5 record. Kayla McBride: ‘The world stopped’ ... and ‘the dark stuff’ came out. Brittney Griner entered the WNBA to bully opponents in the paint and slam down dunks. By accessing any information beyond this page, you agree to abide by the NBA.com.
What if Cynthia Cooper had not retired after the 2000 WNBA season? The offensive dynamo would register a game-high 25 points earning her MVP honors in the process. While cliché, the Cynthia Cooper-1999 Houston Comets showed that they had the hearts of a champion. Her frustrations, in combination with the emotional exhaustion that likely lingered due to the deaths of her mother and Perrot, make Cooper’s decision to retire explainable. On August 30th, 1997 the Houston Comets met the New York Liberty with a claim on the first-ever WNBA … “The bottom line, though, is that both teams have one thing in common,” Cooper told the Times. List of NCAA Division I College Teams and APR scores, Wings let Brian Agler go in mutual decision, Statistics aside, impact players for each 2020 WNBA team. In honor of Mental Health Awareness Day, we are sharing an excerpt of her essay plus snippets from other WNBA players who’ve spoken out about their mental health. Where does the team, led by Arike Ogunbowale and Satou Sabally, go from here?

Every time they went to the WNBA Finals, they won. For Cooper, this emotional blow followed the passing of her mother, who had died of breast cancer earlier that year. Cooper remained resistant to her adapted role. Reggie Miller, who served as analyst for Lifetime, concurred: “There are so many similarities in style and star quality between the two teams.”, When it came to such comparisons, Cooper demurred.

#tbt #cynthiacooper #knowyourhistory #ballislife #neosportsplantbasketball, A post shared by NEO Sportsplant Basketball (@neosportsplantbasketball) on Apr 25, 2019 at 5:45pm PDT. L.A. was led by Lisa Leslie, on a mission. All the more, she was surrounded by a fantastic supporting cast, highlighted by fellow starters Tamecka Dixon, DeLisha Milton-Jones, Mwadi Mabika and Ukari Figgs. A Comets upset would have been a tall task. 2 seed in the Western Conference, improving upon the 20-12 record of the Sacramento Monarchs. We count down 10 moments that made the 2020 season special. Two-time WNBA champion head coach Brian Agler leaves the Dallas Wings after a lackluster two-year tenure. Tina Thompson closes out on Rebecca Lobo as she gets up a jumper. The Sacramento Monarchs disbanded in 2009. So, Cooper and the Comets’ prospects of a five-peat comes down to the 2001 Western Conference Finals? She practices, she plays and she lets nothing bother her. The Comets were one of the founding teams in the WNBA.

The first ever superstar of the @wnba Cynthia Cooper (@ccooper14) Only playing 5 seasons, she dominated by winning 4 straight titles, 4 final MVP’s, 3 scoring titles and 2 League MVP’s. Opening Tip. Houston Comets Win WNBA’s First Championship. Tina Thompson embraces Kim Perrot after the Comets win. The following season, Cooper and the Comets confirmed their dynastic destiny. It is reasonable to suggest, however, that they would have attained a record worthy of the No. After missing the majority of the 1997 season due to pregnancy, Sheryl Swoopes in 1998 — who was presented to the world as the Comets’ superstar leading up to the league’s launch — began to flash her expected upside. Before the 2001 season began, Sheryl Swoopes suffered an ACL injury while playing in a pickup game. Nevertheless, calling it quits seemed like Cooper and the Comets were leaving a fifth title on the table.

The Comets finished the 1999 regular season 26-6 and captured their third-consecutive championship, with Cooper again claiming the Finals MVP trophy. By repeatedly raising the roof on her play, improving and excelling into her mid-30s, she also raised the roof on what was possible for women’s professional basketball more broadly, showing that women players could be unapologetically and enthusiastically obsessed with winning. Cynthia Cooper hoists the first-ever WNBA championship.

The Comets were not immune to the diseases that infect dynasties. “You couldn’t ask for a better time to go out than on top with the Houston Comets as number one.”.

It would be the first of four straight championships for the duo. “I’m not going to retire anytime soon, because I feel good and still have the love for the game and the drive and determination to be the best,” she told Sports Illustrated. This unfortunate injury, along with Cooper’s retirement, appeared to affirm that the Houston Comets dynasty was done. Houston, however, fell 2-0 in the Western Conference Semifinals to the Los Angeles Sparks, the eventual Finals champion.

The Sparks superstar would sweep the MVP awards for the 2001 season: league MVP, All-Star Game and Finals.
The Eastern Conference consists of the Atlanta Dream, Chicago Sky, Connecticut Sun (in Uncasville), Indiana Fever (in Indianapolis), New York Liberty … Then, they retired at the top, leaving the game on their own terms with an unstained championship legacy.

So, despite celebrating a historic four-peat, Cooper seemed to believe her time had passed and chose to end her career as dominant rather than demoted or diminished. But just a week shy of her 30th birthday, her legacy off the court as an outspoken advocate for LGBTQ+ issues rivals her vast on-court successes. Cynthia Cooper and the Houston Comets took the WNBA by storm, winning the first four championships in league history. “As long as I still have the in me, I’ll compete in the WNBA.”. It thus was easy to envision that Cooper could have made a greater impact on the unfolding of the 2001 WNBA season as a player. In that inaugural season, Cooper scored an efficient 22.2 points per game to lead the Comets to an 18-10 record. Sheryl Swoopes was on mainstay in the Comets lineup and while she was known for her smothering defense, she also added a solid offense spark when need be for Houston. Tina Thompson drives the lane en route to two of the 18 points that she would eventually tally in the championship. Every time they won the Finals, they also won the Finals MVP. “If it was my squad, I would know my role.”. Along the way, Cooper claimed two regular-season and four Finals MVP awards. She plays at a top level night in and night out. Houston is still clearly a basketball city. Kim Perrot raises her arms in excitement as the waning seconds of the clock tick off before the Comets are named as a champions.

What if she had come back for one more run?

But it was Swoopes at the dawn of the new decade, not Cooper, who propelled the Comets’ regular-season success. Quite possibly, the Comets would have been the second-best team in the league. In a season played in extraordinary conditions, the WNBA delivered its usual excellent on-court product while continuing to pave the way for athletes speaking on social justice. The absence of Swoopes likely would have allowed her to resume her role as the crux of the Comets’ offensive attack.