Good luck in Phoenix, Candice!

Coolest freakin' day of my life!

Forget what I said yesterday — Candice Dupree is still my favorite basketball player. I will watch as many Phoenix Mercury games as I can this season and if they Sky don’t win the championship, I’ll be cheering for the Mercury to get title #3. I will probably continue to post any and all Candice Dupree news on this blog. Basically, I β™₯ Candice Dupree.

Sure, I was upset about the whole trade thing yesterday. I actually felt a lot better about the entire thing after I wrote that long, rambling blog post last night. I spent the day at work today thinking about the trade and stuff and, by the end of the day, I was cool with it. Then I got home and saw all the official announcements and the tweets and message board posts and I got sad and mad about it all over again. About 20 minutes ago, I came across this Daily Herald article (Dupree says it was time to move on from Sky). I read it and instantly, I was over it. I was over being mad. I was over being sad. Over being hurt, bitter and confused. The article is pretty much loaded with quotes from Dupree explaining her side of things. I guess I just wanted to hear from Candice.

The article starts like this…

If anyone was going to be a Chicago Sky lifer, you figured it would be Candice Dupree.

Candice says…

“I never thought I’d see the day that I wouldn’t be in a Sky uniform.”

Never thought I’d see it either. The article continues…

“I’m going to miss the fans and the city and my teammates,” Dupree said. “But, as a player, I wasn’t content (in Chicago). I wasn’t happy. It was time to move on, and I was the one who asked for the trade.”

Dupree says that she desperately wants to win a WNBA championship and that she was getting antsy waiting for the Sky to simply earn its first playoff berth in franchise history. The Sky has gotten close the last two summers but fumbled away the opportunity in the closing days of the season.

“I wanted to go somewhere I felt like I could compete for a championship right away,” said Dupree, who averaged 15.7 points and 7.9 rebounds per game last season. “This wasn’t personal. I love my teammates to death. I really like (Sky coach and general manager) Steven Key as a person. He’s a nice guy. This was strictly business.”

As a restricted free agent, Dupree had been listening to offers from other teams ever since the free-agency signing period began in February.

Phoenix was one of those teams, and when movement on Pondexter got serious, so did Dupree’s desire to leave the Sky.

The Sky wanted to retain Dupree and was willing, and had the right, to match any other offers she received. But knowing the intensity of Dupree’s feelings to move on, the Sky instead elected to defer to her wishes and try to get quality players to replace her while the offers were still on the table.

So there you have it. No spin. No sugar-coating. Candice tells us exactly what’s up. She just wants to win and got frustrated playing here due to our inability to do just that. What can you say about that? How do you argue with that? Sure I woulda liked it if she woulda stuck around to try and win here…but she tried. She tried for four years. She did everything everything in her power to transform this lowly expansion team into a winner. As the article states, we got close a couple years, but it was clear that the Sky weren’t as committed to winning as she wanted them to be. The Sky let Candice down, not the other way around.

The crazy thing is, if the Sky woulda held on to defeat the Detroit Shock in the final game of the season last year (…and in turn, they woulda made the playoffs) perhaps Candice wouldn’t be playing in the desert in the summer. It’s crazy that a few missed shots in a single game has essentially changed the course of Chicago Sky history forever. Wow. That loss hurt. It hurt back then cuz it cost us the playoffs. It hurts even more now cuz it cost us Candice Dupree. Craziness.

I don’t think in my last post, I ever really wished Candice good luck in Phoenix.

~ Good luck with the Mercury, Candice. ~

Also, I don’t think in my last post I ever really welcomed our newbies to the team.

~ Welcome to the Sky, Christon and Kraayeveld. ~

Here’s some more articles and links about the trade…
Sky’s official press release: Sky Acquire Christon, Kraayeveld
Chicago Tribune: Sky deals Dupree, gets Christon in 3-team trade
AZ Family: Mercury get Candice Dupree is 3-team trade
ESPN Chicago: Sky deal Dupree for two players

Like I said in the beginning of this post, you’ll likely continue to see lots of Candice stuff on this blog because, well, she’s still “Sky” to me. I’m gonna try to learn about and embrace the new players we got coming in this season. I’m gonna try to be as excited for 2010 as I have been for ’06, ’07, ’08 and ’09. I’m gonna continue to support my favorite team. I’m gonna continue to support my favorite player.

Thanks for the great memories, Candice! Especially these…

My first time meeting Candice. I was literally on cloud 9 for weeks after taking this pic!

The second time I met Dupree. Just as thrilling at the first time!

Fun times with Candice @ the STH ice cream social!

We're gonna miss you, Candice!

~ Chicago Sky Hoops ~

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~ by audsquad on March 30, 2010.

4 Responses to “Good luck in Phoenix, Candice!”

  1. I’m OK with it as well. My daughter is most displeased.

    • poor kid 😦

      I’m over it, but I find myself becoming more and more of a Mercury fan and less and less of a Sky fan everyday. Maybe that’s just because Candice was all over the place doing media stuff in Phoenix today. I should just change the title of this blog to “Candice Dupree Hoops” then just make it a Mercury blog. Sadly enough, I really am considering doing that.

  2. Kudos to Candice for going after what she wants and for the honesty. We’ll miss her!

  3. agreed. she seems really, really happy in Phoenix so that make me happy for her.

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