The Chicago Sky fell to the Indiana Fever tonight at the Allstate Arena with the final tally being Indy 91 and the Sky 79...dropping the Sky to a 2-9 record on the season. It hasn't been a pretty year for the Sky with new coaches, loss of a league MVP (I won't say the name Elena Delle Donne since it ticks off the current Sky players to no end) and new faces on the team along with some veterans. It's not that they don't play hard...I saw tonight how hard they try but too many turnovers and missed shots would lead any team to a 2-9 record. For example, in tonight's game the Sky had 18 turnovers - while the Indiana Fever had 4 - yes I wrote FOUR but to be fair it was a franchise record low turnovers for the Fever. I've seen every Sky game this season whether it was on TV or live at the Allstate Arena and they have too many turnovers in every game and just don't seem to have jelled as a team and it's getting deeper into the season with little hope of improvement in sight. Turnovers in the last few games have been 15, 16, 15, and tonight's 18...
The game today for me was very personal - I made sure to attend the game in person at the arena to watch my friend Pokey Chatman do her thing - and do it she did leading her Indy Fever to their FIRST road win of the season which was a sweet birthday present for the Coach. Happy Birthday Pokey!!! I also witnessed two other birthday gifts for the coach which were unexpected - when Chatman left the tunnel to enter the arena before the start of the game the crowd saw her and started clapping and whooping it up for her - I was amazed and loved it! She also got a very huge ovation when the announcers were introducing the Fever and when they mentioned head coach Pokey Chatman - there was a huge roar from the crowd once again. I've never seen anything like it - such huge cheers for the rival coach - this proved to me once again what she meant to the Chicago Sky fans and those of us in the media too. Yes we dearly miss you Pokey and to prove it even further....after the game I went down to the locker room area and there was a group of media members gathered outside the VISITING Team locker room waiting to interview and see Pokey - and there wasn't ONE press member outside the Sky's locker room...I rest my case.
Happiness is seeing Pokey Chatman in Chicago = Sadness is knowing she would be leaving to go back to her new team in Indiana.
Happiness is getting to gab with Pokey and catch up a bit in person to hear how she's doing and her telling me after a big hug - she is doing great and that the organization for the Indiana Fever is wonderful and treats her so well...she is happy but misses many of the great friends she made while in Chicago. She also told me she was just overwhelmed by the welcome she got by the crowd tonight and that it gave her chills - I can't think of a better birthday present for anyone to be recognized like that for their achievements and the crowd showing their love and appreciation for her time in Chicago.
Happiness is seeing former asst. Sky coach Christie Sides watching the game so when I asked her who she was rooting for she quickly said "Pokey, of course!" And when she threw the question back at me I answered "me too!" Christie spent her first year away from the Chicago Sky as an asst. coach with the Northwestern women's basketball team and told me she will be back with them this year too. Both Christie and Pokey at the Allstate Arena - it was like the good old days and I sure do miss seeing them as our coaches.
Happiness is running into my pal Tamika Catchings (now retired basketball goddess) who was in the house with her crowd of supporters for the annual Chicago Road Trip bringing Indy fans to Chicago in support of her wonderful Catch the Stars Foundation. (you can read all about the excellent programs her foundation offers at catchthestars.org). She still gives the best hugs in the world and it was a wonderful surprise to see her tonight and catch up in person.
Pokey, Christie, Tamika - it was GREAT to see you. Coach Stocks and the Chicago Sky - I apologize for harping on and on about the former coaches and the Fever's superstar Tamika Catchings but you see we are friends and I miss them. I want to feel the same about the 2017 Sky but I am still dealing with my anger at losing the coaching staff and yes I'm going to say her name once again - Elena Delle Donne. They made the Sky special and the team is no longer special....it is mediocre at best. Give me and the fans time to warm up to the new coaches and players - and give us something to cheer about - a 2-9 record just doesn't really cut it.
Filed under: Uncategorized