Sports·Opinion

Joy Drop: The power of the WNBA and playoff perseverance

CBC Sports Senior Contributor Shireen Ahmed's weekly roundup of the things that struck her from the week that was.

CBC Sports' senior contributor Shireen Ahmed on the week's happier moments

Canadian Bridget Carleton, left, of the Minnesota Lynx is a WNBA mainstay. (David Berding/Getty Images)

Hello! Hello! Friday is here, and we are all ready for a relaxing weekend. Except for the Leafs' fans who are all pumped up for Game 7 Saturday night (CBC, CBCSports.ca, 7 p.m. ET) in the series against reigning Stanley Cup champions, the Tampa Bay Lightning. Good luck to all the fans out there who are rooting for their NHL teams!

I believe in never giving up and when we are in the playoffs, I think it is even more powerful. One such example is Talaya Crawford. I was so excited and happy to see this young child win a high school track race in Omaha, Neb., which began with her losing her shoe. She composed herself in that moment, ran back, put the shoe on again and continued the race — which she won.

Talaya's father is world boxing champion Terence Crawford, who posted the video on his Instagram page. He wrote that "she let it all hang out even when she was hit with adversity." What a beautiful reminder to steady yourself and then keep going. Pure joy. 

The WNBA's 26th season started last week and the games are total fire. In Canada, there are a few ways to watch. There is always a league pass available for purchase (careful of the geo-blocking!) and also TSN is broadcasting the games. I love all the hype around the WNBA and also the Canadian connection.

I also wanted to point to some really beautiful jewelry that the WNBA promoted by Baublebar. In preparation for the season, NBA Canada sent some of the pieces to a few prominent sports media personalities.

Last season, the orange WNBA hoodie was the most sought-after sports accessory and maybe this year it will be jewelry featuring the WNBA's iconic logowoman. Anything that helps support and promote women's sports is always going to be something I adore. And if it sparkles, all the better!

While we are celebrating women's basketball, I am so happy to share the news of the Maritime Women's Basketball Association (MWBA) starting this weekend! My colleague, Myles Dichter, wrote a piece on this brand new league and why it matters

For many elite women's athletes, after their university careers end, there isn't always a place for them to continue to play. This league provides top-tier athletes with that opportunity to continue with the sport they love. You know I am very soft-hearted about the Maritimes but when there is news about women's sports blazing a trail there, I can't help but feel overjoyed. 

The weather looks to be beautiful so I hope you can get some fresh air, get outside or in my case get some Spring cleaning done!

I leave you with a beautiful song from one of my favourite Haligonians, Sarah McLachlan.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Shireen Ahmed

Senior Contributor

Shireen Ahmed is a multi-platform sports journalist, a TEDx speaker, mentor, and an award-winning sports activist who focuses on the intersections of racism and misogyny in sports. She is an industry expert on Muslim women in sports, and her academic research and contributions have been widely published. She is co-creator and co-host of the “Burn It All Down” feminist sports podcast team. In addition to being a seasoned investigative reporter, her commentary is featured by media outlets in Canada, the USA, Europe and Australia. She holds an MA in Media Production from X University, in Toronto, Canada where she now teaches Sports Journalism and Sports Media. You can find Shireen tweeting or drinking coffee, or tweeting about drinking coffee. She lives with her four children and her cat.

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