After the Los Angeles Sparks had finished practice Thursday, forward Nneka Ogwumike indicated the team would likely continue to stay in the locker room during the playing of the National Anthem.
She also said she was somewhat surprised by the boos the Sparks heard while emerging onto the floor before Games 1 and 2 at Williams Arena on the University of Minnesota campus.
“We were not showing disrespect to the Minnesota fans,’’ she said.
Ogwumike did say the team received a letter written and sent by a Lynx fan supporting the Sparks’ decision on the matter.
“I would hope our fans would understand as well,’’ she said. “Everyone knows it’s all about unity, acceptance and togetherness.’’
The Sparks’ decision before Game 1 Sunday came amid the controversy caused by President Donald Trump’s comments on the matter and the decision of several NFL players to kneel during the anthem --or to stay in the locker room, as the Pittsburgh Steelers did.
“There are big things happening in this world,’’ Ogwumike said. “And so we wanted to take a moment to let people understand that. As a league, as players and the players union, we’re all about integrity, morality and honor.’’
--If the Lynx are going to win this series – or even bring it back to Minneapolis for a Game 5 – they’ll have to do something they haven’t yet done this year – win at Staples Center.
The Sparks won the season series 2-1, with both victories coming at home.
It won’t be easy. The Sparks were a league-best 16-1 at home during the regular season and won both home games in the semifinals.
“L.A. has done a great job of taking care of their court throughout the entire season,’’ Lynx coach Cheryl Reeve said. “Including the playoffs. We have our work cut out for us.’’
--Reeve said the Lynx surrendering much of their 20-point third quarter lead in Game 2 was partly her fault.
“I did a terrible job subbing,’’ she said. “We got ourselves caught with some tired players on the floor. Our offense wasn’t very good to us, some of which was L.A. Ultimately, we had people trying to execute at times when I put them in a bad spot. We have to do better in that area.’’