Dishin & Swishin 10/04/12 Podcast: Tully Bevilaqua calls it a career & Chasity Melvin on the WNBA conference finals
The WNBA season is nearing completion, and soon we will in the college season. Tonight begins the conference finals and Dishin & Swishin is all about the WNBA this week.
First, for the second week in a row, we say goodbye to a friend, who played the game with grace, style and intensity. Last week it was Ticha Penicheiro, this week it is Tully Bevilaqua. While Bevilaqua never had the “star quality” of Penicheiro, her career is the thing dreams are made of. She thought she would be drafted by the ABL (American Basketball League), but was not, so she returned to Australia. Word of her game still drifted to the States, and the Cleveland Rockers signed her. Released by Cleveland, Bevilaqua landed in Portland, and she has stayed in the WNBA ever since, enjoying a 14-year career.
The consummate role player, Bevilaqua recognized the importance of filling the position of floor leader, defensive stopper, and ball handler, and she filled it well, especially in Seattle, where she was a vital part of the WNBA championship team in 2004. The Indiana Fever signed her as a free agent, and it continued there, as she was WNBA All-Defensive team six consecutive seasons (beginning in Seattle), and the Kim Perrot Sportsmanship award recipient in 2007.
The last few years, first with the Fever and then with the San Antonio Silver Stars, Bevilaqua has taken on the role of mentor for young guards such as Briann January and Danielle Robinson. She has graciously shared her knowledge and been a leader on both teams, always with a smile for the fans.
The WNBA is going to miss Tully Bevilaqua, and we here at Dishin & Swishin wish her the best in her new endeavors!
On to the conference finals!
When Indiana Fever post Erlana Larkins ended the Eastern Conference semifinals with a 20 rebound performance, included in that were nine offensive rebounds, tying the record set by Chasity Melvin in 2006.
Melvin joins us this week to help break down the conference finals. Melvin has had a strong WNBA career, with seven playoff appearances, first with Cleveland and then Washington. She knows the playoff atmosphere, and played with or against most of the players in the conference finals this season.
Melvin joined Dishin & Swishin this week to breakdown the Indiana-Connecticut and Los Angeles-Minnesota playoff series and more. We discussed the growth and improvement of coaching in the WNBA over the years. That led to a discussion of what her former team, the Washington Mystics, need to do to turn the franchise around. Also, as October is breast cancer awareness month, we discussed her mentor, the late Kay Yow, and her impact on and off the court on Melvin.
Melvin played overseas last season, and is undecided about this year. In the meantime, she has been doing a great job blogging and video blogging on her website, chas44.com. We know you are going to enjoy her insight!
So to summarize, we say goodbye to Tully, and hello to Chas, who breaks down the conference finals.
Enjoy the podcast!