Monday Mystics Practice Update
Things were upbeat to say the least at Verizon Center on Monday afternoon. The players went through an extensive stretching routine at the end of practice, which isn't out of the ordinary, but Monday, they sang various TV show theme songs as they did lunges across the court.
First there was the "Golden Girls" theme, which several Mystics used to make fun of veterans Nakia Sanford and Chasity Melvin, and then Tasha Humphrey led them in the themes from "The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air" and "The Jeffersons."
The impromptu sing-a-long stems partly from the team's chemistry and partly from its 2-0 start.
"Don't get so excited"
Apparently after the Mystics earned their first-ever 2-0 start in franchise history, Chasity Melvin reminded them to keep something in mind: "Don't get so excited. This is what we do. We win."
That's the attitude the Mystics are working to establish.
"That's all a mentality thing," Nakia Sanford said. "To not make it so amazing that we're winning games. We're working hard; we're prepared; we're doing everything we're supposed to do to win. It's supposed to be the norm, not, 'Oh we won a game and we didn't do an 0-for season.'"
Said Coach Julie Plank: "I think you can see that they're not satisfied. Today was optional, and everyone's sticking around shooting wanting to get better. The rest of them are in the weight room or getting treatment. Everyone knows this is going to be a daily improvement."
Humphrey acclimates to Washington
As she demonstrated in Sunday's home opener, Tasha Humphrey is one of the most outgoing characters on the roster, qualities that weren't readily on display last season after she was traded to Washington.
Now feeling completely acclimated, Humphrey is ready to burst into song, steal shoes or start dancing in the middle of practice.
"For me going through training camp and getting to know the players personally has really helped," Humphrey said. "When I came over from the trade, I didn't have a lot of time to mesh; I just had to go straight into playing. Spending more time and doing more with everyone has meant a lot and been really good for me."
The Mystics play just one game in the 11 days that follow their home opener, a Wednesday visit to defending champion Detroit. I'll have more on the Shock for tomorrow's blog and Wednesday's paper, but in the meantime, keep an eye on Detroit's second of two games against Los Angeles tonight.
Detroit lost its season opener, 78-58, to the Sparks on Saturday and are without Cheryl Ford (ACL), Kara Braxton (suspended) and Plenette Pierson (shoulder). The Shock signed center Britany Miller to a replacement contract today, which teams are allowed to do on an emergency basis if they have eight or fewer available players.
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