6 Reasons Why Families Should Attend L.A. Sparks Games
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Los Angeles is home to three professional basketball teams. In order of general popularity, we have the Los Angeles Lakers, the Los Angeles Clippers, and the Los Angeles Sparks. But how many of our families even know about the Sparks? Or have seen a live Sparks game at the Staples Center?
Our L.A. Sparks are in the WNBA Playoffs, defending their championship title, and looking to make it two-in-a-row! (Their first playoff game is on September 12th. Tickets are available online).
If you’ve never been to a game, now is a great time to go. And here’s why:
1. Put your money where your mouth is. We believe in equality. We believe our daughters are capable of doing everything our sons can do. We want our daughters to grow up believing that no goal is beyond their reach, that hard work and dedication will turn their dreams into realities. Therefore, we need to support these women who have done just that.
2. Normalize it. If families regularly attend WNBA games, our kids would stop focusing on the fact that there are female players out on the court. Instead, they’d be focused on the impressive basketball — the solid defense, the great passing, the consistently made free throws. They’d talk about the basketball players and leave “female” out of it.3. Spread the word. Here in Los Angeles, everyone knows about the Dodgers and the Angels. The Kings and the Ducks. The Lakers and the Clippers. But who talks about the Los Angeles Sparks? Our Los Angeles Sparks won the 2016 WNBA Championship (and in fact are three-time WNBA Champions!). But where were the banners on the lampposts? The billboards on the sides of buses? The parades that stopped traffic all around town? Where was the pride? We’ve got to fill those Staples Center seats and spread the word about this incredibly talented team and their impressive accomplishments.
4. Great basketball and great sportsmanship. Our family is a basketball family. (We’re Clippers fans. You can click here to read my post “6 Lessons My Son Is Learning From Watching the L.A. Clippers”). And too often during NBA games, we see players called out for technical fouls. We see players acting rudely to the opposing team and to the referees on the court. We often see players rushing off the court at the end of the game. But, we didn’t see any of those actions at our Sparks game. We saw rules being followed. We saw respectful behavior. We saw both teams remain on the court to give each other high-fives after our Sparks beat the Minnesota Lynx (78 to 67).
5. They are role models for our girls. When our family attended a recent game, we watched our Sparks compete against another top-ranked WNBA team. We saw the visiting team coached by a female. We saw a female referee on the court. We saw the President and COO of the Sparks, a woman named Christine Simmons. These women are showing our girls that everything is possible. These careers are out there and our girls can have them.
6. They are role models for our boys. Let the boys see that girls play basketball. And they play well. Not well for girls. They play well, period. We can’t just tell our boys that girls are their equals. We have to show them. I asked my son what he thought about a female coach, a female referee, female teams. He seemed surprised that I even asked. Unlike his dad and I, Ryan is growing up in a world where professional basketball is played by men and women. But when I pressed Ryan, he told me the Sparks played hard. “They ran fast,” he said. “And they showed a lot of teamwork.”
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