WASHINGTON – After welcoming the WNBA champion Lynx on Monday, President Barack Obama had a question:

"So this is the team's third visit to the White House in the past five years. So I guess, I should ask, whose house?"

The atmosphere was awfully homespun for a team that has established itself as something of a dynasty in women's pro basketball, homespun enough that Obama welcomed the son of Lynx coach Cheryl Reeve to the stage when he got fussy in the crowd.

Citing a roster featuring Maya Moore, Lindsay Whalen and Seimone Augustus, three of the top 20 players in WNBA history, the president told the crowd packed into the East Room: "I think it's safe to say this team is a powerhouse."

Obama joked that Reeve was getting greedy winning all the titles.

"With the banners going up and the champagne popping, she looked around and said, 'This never gets old,' " Obama said. "It's never gotten old for the players either."

But Obama pointed out that the team's most recent celebration included something special. "The Lynx drove out to Paisley Park for a private concert by one of their biggest fans — Prince — which was pretty cool, and reminds us of how much we miss him," the president said. "In fact, the last time I saw him he was on this stage [in the East Room] at a really good party."

The president offered a somber shout-out to Timberwolves coach Flip Saunders, who died last season of cancer.

Otherwise, the ceremony was a familiar celebration. Obama was presented with another Lynx jersey. In a sport where women are paid exponentially less than their male counterparts, the president offered a pitch for "equal pay for equal work" that attracted a loud ovation.

Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar was on hand for the ceremony and offered her congratulations to the team.

Whalen invited the Commander-in-Chief to come to "our house." She joked that she and the team thought a third term for Obama could keep the championships coming.

The president highlighted the injuries that the Lynx overcame to win the title in 2015 as an example of their achievement. But he also highlighted the work the team has done off the court in Minnesota, visiting Boys and Girls Clubs and hosting kids from tough backgrounds in hopes of pointing them toward success. That as much as any trophies made the Lynx champions, the president said.