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Will the Sparks retain their Big 3?
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Will Candace Parker, Nneka Ogwumike, and Chelsea Gray all stay with LA (at least through 2021)?
Yes; all 3 will stay with LA.
25%
 25%  [ 8 ]
No; at least one of them will leave LA.
75%
 75%  [ 24 ]
Total Votes : 32

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Stormeo



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PostPosted: 01/15/21 12:28 am    ::: Will the Sparks retain their Big 3? Reply Reply with quote

Let the discussion & speculation begin.

Chelsea Gray
Years of Experience in the League: 6
Status: UFA
Why she might stay:
Found a home/good situation for herself with the Sparks
Is originally from California
Why she might leave:
Is the only one here that has been with a different team before (the Sun), so is okay with switching teams
Is from the Bay area, which Californians may argue is a world away from LA

Nneka Ogwumike
Years of Experience in the League: 9
Status: Cored
Why she might stay:
Being cored, she can't explore her options per se by negotiating with other teams
Her sister & fellow Spark Chiney's ESPN career is based in LA
Maybe wants to stay with one team her whole career
Why she might leave:
She might want to leave if Chiney leaves the team – whether it be via retirement, wanting out, or LA not being able to afford to keep Chiney
She could be tired of playing under Parker's shadow (this is pretty much Parker's team, after all)

Candace Parker
Years of Experience in the League: 13
Status: UFA
Why she might stay:
She bought a $4-mil house in the LA area last month
Quote: "My decision isn't going to be determined by what other people think. I've played with LA for 13 years, I'm loyal. I never say never, but at the same time, I've been with Adidas my entire career. I stayed at Tennessee when things got hard, I don't quit. I would rather not quit than take the easy way out any day. That's what it's about."
Quote: "I want to be in LA, I've been in LA my entire career. I've had a number of opportunities and a number of times where it's been a real option to leave. I don't want to leave LA..."
Why she might leave:
Quote: "...but at the same time, we've got to get better. We can't keep saying next year… I've had 13 years of the future being bright, at some point we've got to put it together."
And the team will instantly be on a cap crunch if all 3 of them re-sign, which will make it that much tougher to "get better" than they were.
The last time they finished with the League's best record in the regular season is 2004; to reiterate, they haven't done so in all of Parker's 13 years on the team.

Source of these Parker quotes: What is Candace Parker's future in Los Angeles?


Why any/all of them could leave:
Disliking Derek Fisher as a coach (and therefore disapproving his appointment as GM)
Disliking the organization's constant messiness & the team's perceived underachieving
Their time together in LA has run its course

Why any/all of them could stay:
They genuinely like playing together/for each other
They really think they can win another title together ( Wink )



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Last edited by Stormeo on 01/15/21 1:16 am; edited 1 time in total
mavcarter
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PostPosted: 01/15/21 1:06 am    ::: Re: Will the Sparks retain their Big 3? Reply Reply with quote

Stormeo wrote:
”I've had 13 years of the future being bright, at some point we've got to put it together."



Just fuck 2016, huh Candace..



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J-Spoon



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PostPosted: 01/15/21 1:27 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Has there ever been another time where you could at least make an argument that two different players are worthy of coring?

You can argue that one is better than the other between Ogwumike and Gray based on age, position, impact, etc but both are viable candidates for coring.

Follow up do you core the player you view as more valuable? or the player you think is more likely to leave and therefor you want to get assets in return rather than just let that player walk?


Stormeo



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PostPosted: 01/15/21 1:38 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

J-Spoon wrote:
Has there ever been another time where you could at least make an argument that two different players are worthy of coring?


In the now old days, multiple players could certainly be worthy of being cored at one time when 4-5 players were always on the same max-salary contracts. As the new salary cap sets in, teams probably aren't just gonna let their star players' contracts all run out at the same time & put themselves in this highly undesirable position (though it's highly interesting for us non-Sparks fans!).



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Stormeo



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PostPosted: 01/15/21 1:42 am    ::: Re: Will the Sparks retain their Big 3? Reply Reply with quote

mavcarter wrote:
Stormeo wrote:
”I've had 13 years of the future being bright, at some point we've got to put it together."


Just fuck 2016, huh Candace..


Laughing 2016 notwithstanding, she's not totally wrong. The Sparks haven't finished a regular season with the best record in the League overall since drafting Candace Parker, despite having season after season where the team's talent wasn't the issue.



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mavcarter
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PostPosted: 01/15/21 1:55 am    ::: Re: Will the Sparks retain their Big 3? Reply Reply with quote

Stormeo wrote:
mavcarter wrote:
Stormeo wrote:
”I've had 13 years of the future being bright, at some point we've got to put it together."


Just fuck 2016, huh Candace..


Laughing 2016 notwithstanding, she's not totally wrong. The Sparks haven't finished a regular season with the best record in the League overall since drafting Candace Parker, despite having season after season where the team's talent wasn't the issue.


Touché. The Sparks have had some strong competition in the West but I am surprised that they haven’t snagged it at least once especially with two 26 win seasons.



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Sparksfan



Joined: 18 Aug 2015
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PostPosted: 01/15/21 3:41 am    ::: Re: Will the Sparks retain their Big 3? Reply Reply with quote

Stormeo wrote:
mavcarter wrote:
Stormeo wrote:
”I've had 13 years of the future being bright, at some point we've got to put it together."


Just fuck 2016, huh Candace..


Laughing 2016 notwithstanding, she's not totally wrong. The Sparks haven't finished a regular season with the best record in the League overall since drafting Candace Parker, despite having season after season where the team's talent wasn't the issue.


It wasn't the team didn't have talent they just didn't have better talent than the other teams majority the Minnesota Lynx who Candace ran into in the prime of her career


ClayK



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PostPosted: 01/15/21 10:09 am    ::: Reply Reply with quote

A geographical note: Chelsea Gray went to high school in Stockton, which is 337 miles from LA. (That's about twice the distance between Chicago and Indianapolis, for reference.)



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myrtle



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PostPosted: 01/15/21 12:43 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

ClayK wrote:
A geographical note: Chelsea Gray went to high school in Stockton, which is 337 miles from LA. (That's about twice the distance between Chicago and Indianapolis, for reference.)


and went cross continent to college...which may or may not mean proximity to family means much to her.



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Stormeo



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PostPosted: 01/15/21 1:24 pm    ::: Re: Will the Sparks retain their Big 3? Reply Reply with quote

Sparksfan wrote:
Stormeo wrote:
mavcarter wrote:
Stormeo wrote:
”I've had 13 years of the future being bright, at some point we've got to put it together."


Just fuck 2016, huh Candace..


Laughing 2016 notwithstanding, she's not totally wrong. The Sparks haven't finished a regular season with the best record in the League overall since drafting Candace Parker, despite having season after season where the team's talent wasn't the issue.


It wasn't the team didn't have talent they just didn't have better talent than the other teams majority the Minnesota Lynx who Candace ran into in the prime of her career


Yep, the Lynx almost singlehandedly blocked the Sparks from #1 during the Lynx's incredible years-long run of title contention. By the same token, the Sparks knew exactly who their biggest threat was and – speaking strictly as it relates to the regular season – could never "put it together," as Parker said, to usurp them even once. At least they found enough magic in the 2016 postseason, for their sake. They've also had opportunities since 2018 (three, to be exact) during these Lynx re-tooling years to help themselves to a #1 seed, but they just haven't been able to get there. With all that historical context and the League being much more competitive at the top now than it was during most of the Lynx Dynasty years, I just can't see the Sparks winning the title or even getting a #1 seed with the core group it has now (including Kristi Toliver, whom we may or may not remember is a Spark as of last year!) – unless they're about to shake things up a bit in a way that keeps them in contention.



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Stormeo



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PostPosted: 01/27/21 5:24 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

The answer more & more is looking like “No.” Candace Parker “committing to” play for Chicago is now an ESPN article – looking like a done deal.

https://www.espn.com/wnba/story/_/id/30790340/candace-parker-play-hometown-chicago-sky-13-seasons-los-angeles-sparks-sources-say



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WNBA 09



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PostPosted: 01/27/21 5:56 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

I think it will big 1 before it’s all said and done unless you count Toliver and Chiney #2 & #3



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johnjohnW



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PostPosted: 01/27/21 6:03 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

WNBA 09 wrote:
I think it will big 1 before it’s all said and done unless you count Toliver and Chiney #2 & #3


Shoot. Is it too late for Toliver to go back to Washington?


Stormeo



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PostPosted: 01/27/21 6:11 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

WNBA 09 wrote:
I think it will big 1 before it’s all said and done unless you count Toliver and Chiney #2 & #3

That's looking like the case. The Next aka a Megdal-run operation broke the CP3-to-Chicago development, which is now unofficially true. They also broke the Chelsea Gray-to-Vegas as an "acquisition" development. (Still, that makes it sound like Vegas is gonna have to trade for Gray rather than just sign her...)

And then there's this on Ogwumike agreeing to a multi-year deal with the Sparks: https://twitter.com/RachGall/status/1354558786091024384

Quote:
Sources tell @Winsidr that Sparks GM/Head Coach Derek Fisher actively encouraged Nneka to have conversations with other organizations, embracing a new era of player empowerment in the WNBA.


Nneka was cored. Even with the Sparks' blessing, I didn't know cored players could even be allowed to talk to other teams, but I guess we know now! Really interesting. The LA Sparks' is Nneka's team (for) now...



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J-Spoon



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PostPosted: 01/27/21 6:18 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Stormeo wrote:
WNBA 09 wrote:
I think it will big 1 before it’s all said and done unless you count Toliver and Chiney #2 & #3

That's looking like the case. The Next aka a Megdal-run operation broke the CP3-to-Chicago development, which is now unofficially true. They also broke the Chelsea Gray-to-Vegas as an "acquisition" development. (Still, that makes it sound like Vegas is gonna have to trade for Gray rather than just sign her...)

And then there's this on Ogwumike agreeing to a multi-year deal with the Sparks: https://twitter.com/RachGall/status/1354558786091024384

Quote:
Sources tell @Winsidr that Sparks GM/Head Coach Derek Fisher actively encouraged Nneka to have conversations with other organizations, embracing a new era of player empowerment in the WNBA.


Nneka was cored. Even with the Sparks' blessing, I didn't know cored players could even be allowed to talk to other teams, but I guess we know now! Really interesting. The LA Sparks' is Nneka's team (for) now...


you suggested it somewhere else but Ch. Gray and Something for Cambage could be really interesting.

Ch. Gray for Plum and something also make some sense

and if LA wants something cheaper in return so they can retain Sykes and Chiney Ch. Gray for Young and pick 12 also has potential


Stormeo



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PostPosted: 01/27/21 6:59 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

J-Spoon wrote:
you suggested it somewhere else but Ch. Gray and Something for Cambage could be really interesting.

Ch. Gray for Plum and something also make some sense

and if LA wants something cheaper in return so they can retain Sykes and Chiney Ch. Gray for Young and pick 12 also has potential


I have to think Kelsey Plum gets included in any Gray-to-Vegas trade. They play the same position, Laimbeer has always preferred bigger guards anyway, and Plum is from SoCal so she'd be receptive to returning home (if not this year, then thereafter). It should be Gray for Plum + Vegas' 2022 1RP + maybe even something else imo. Vegas may need to keep Plum if nothing else for her outside shooting ability, but I really don't think Laimbeer values that as much as he maybe should.



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J-Spoon



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PostPosted: 01/27/21 7:04 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Stormeo wrote:
J-Spoon wrote:
you suggested it somewhere else but Ch. Gray and Something for Cambage could be really interesting.

Ch. Gray for Plum and something also make some sense

and if LA wants something cheaper in return so they can retain Sykes and Chiney Ch. Gray for Young and pick 12 also has potential


I have to think Kelsey Plum gets included in any Gray-to-Vegas trade. They play the same position, Laimbeer has always preferred bigger guards anyway, and Plum is from SoCal so she'd be receptive to returning home (if not this year, then thereafter). It should be Gray for Plum + Vegas' 2022 1RP + maybe even something else imo. Vegas may need to keep Plum if nothing else for her outside shooting ability, but I really don't think Laimbeer values that as much as he maybe should.


I don't disagree but Plum is kind of expensive if LA wants to free more cap space J. Young and something might make more sense

I think you can play Plum and Gray together especially if you retain Cambage
Gray, Plum, McCoughtry, Wilson and Cambage would be a sick starting line up and Gray and Plum's shooting would be needed to make that line up work


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PostPosted: 01/27/21 7:07 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Gray's played alongside other point guards lots of times in LA, plus being alongside Candace who does a lot of the same stuff. She's even playing alongside another pure point in Europe right now. And Laimbeer's played Plum more off the ball than he's played her on it. So I don't think the arrival of one necessarily means the exit of the other.



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Stormeo



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PostPosted: 01/27/21 7:10 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

J-Spoon wrote:
Stormeo wrote:
J-Spoon wrote:
you suggested it somewhere else but Ch. Gray and Something for Cambage could be really interesting.

Ch. Gray for Plum and something also make some sense

and if LA wants something cheaper in return so they can retain Sykes and Chiney Ch. Gray for Young and pick 12 also has potential


I have to think Kelsey Plum gets included in any Gray-to-Vegas trade. They play the same position, Laimbeer has always preferred bigger guards anyway, and Plum is from SoCal so she'd be receptive to returning home (if not this year, then thereafter). It should be Gray for Plum + Vegas' 2022 1RP + maybe even something else imo. Vegas may need to keep Plum if nothing else for her outside shooting ability, but I really don't think Laimbeer values that as much as he maybe should.


I don't disagree but Plum is kind of expensive if LA wants to free more cap space J. Young and something might make more sense

I think you can play Plum and Gray together especially if you retain Cambage
Gray, Plum, McCoughtry, Wilson and Cambage would be a sick starting line up and Gray and Plum's shooting would be needed to make that line up work


It would really depend on McBride returning to Vegas. (Hell, maybe she signs with LA.) If McBride leaves, then yes Vegas for multiple reasons ought to keep Plum and trade Jackie Young instead. Otherwise, re-signing McBride would make the Aces need cap relief more than the Sparks, since the Sparks have already lost Parker.



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J-Spoon



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PostPosted: 01/27/21 7:12 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

Stormeo wrote:
J-Spoon wrote:
Stormeo wrote:
J-Spoon wrote:
you suggested it somewhere else but Ch. Gray and Something for Cambage could be really interesting.

Ch. Gray for Plum and something also make some sense

and if LA wants something cheaper in return so they can retain Sykes and Chiney Ch. Gray for Young and pick 12 also has potential


I have to think Kelsey Plum gets included in any Gray-to-Vegas trade. They play the same position, Laimbeer has always preferred bigger guards anyway, and Plum is from SoCal so she'd be receptive to returning home (if not this year, then thereafter). It should be Gray for Plum + Vegas' 2022 1RP + maybe even something else imo. Vegas may need to keep Plum if nothing else for her outside shooting ability, but I really don't think Laimbeer values that as much as he maybe should.


I don't disagree but Plum is kind of expensive if LA wants to free more cap space J. Young and something might make more sense

I think you can play Plum and Gray together especially if you retain Cambage
Gray, Plum, McCoughtry, Wilson and Cambage would be a sick starting line up and Gray and Plum's shooting would be needed to make that line up work


It would really depend on McBride returning to Vegas. (Hell, maybe she signs with LA.) If McBride leaves, then yes Vegas for multiple reasons ought to keep Plum and trade Jackie Young instead. Otherwise, re-signing McBride would make the Aces need cap relief more than the Sparks, since the Sparks have already lost Parker.


In the free agent thread Mav put up McBride to Minn it may have been a guess
but sounded more like a statement


Stormeo



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PostPosted: 01/27/21 7:22 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

J-Spoon wrote:
In the free agent thread Mav put up McBride to Minn it may have been a guess
but sounded more like a statement

Lmao speak of the devil. Laughing Laughing It's real!

Okay, Aces (un)officially need to keep Plum now. Gray to Vegas for Jackie Young + their 2022 1RP. Although really, Gray should probably just sign with Vegas for the regular max, but what do I know!



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ChicagoAnnie



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PostPosted: 01/27/21 9:52 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

i cheated and voted after the CP new broke. Just so I could be right about something. Laughing


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PostPosted: 01/27/21 10:06 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

"Sources tell @Winsidr that Sparks GM/Head Coach Derek Fisher actively encouraged Nneka to have conversations with other organizations, embracing a new era of player empowerment in the WNBA."

https://twitter.com/RachGall/status/1354558786091024384?s=20
WNBA 09



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PostPosted: 01/27/21 11:27 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

flojojr2007 wrote:
"Sources tell @Winsidr that Sparks GM/Head Coach Derek Fisher actively encouraged Nneka to have conversations with other organizations, embracing a new era of player empowerment in the WNBA."

https://twitter.com/RachGall/status/1354558786091024384?s=20


So he’s as dumb as we thought? Nneka won’t win you a title alone Fishy. With CP’s departure her buddy Gray will most likely hit the high route as well. He’d better pray he’s not losing this core for Toliver & the Ogwumikes with B.Sykes as a supporter!



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Stormeo



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PostPosted: 01/27/21 11:43 pm    ::: Reply Reply with quote

WNBA 09 wrote:
flojojr2007 wrote:
"Sources tell @Winsidr that Sparks GM/Head Coach Derek Fisher actively encouraged Nneka to have conversations with other organizations, embracing a new era of player empowerment in the WNBA."

https://twitter.com/RachGall/status/1354558786091024384?s=20


So he’s as dumb as we thought? Nneka won’t win you a title alone Fishy. With CP’s departure her buddy Gray will most likely hit the high route as well. He’d better pray he’s not losing this core for Toliver & the Ogwumikes with B.Sykes as a supporter!


The goodwill showing of coaches to let their free agents talk to other teams imo isn't a bad strategy. If that's how the coaches think they can best build back trust with their players by letting them explore their options, then so be it. They'd have to really believe the player in question was on the fence about things (not leaning one way or another) and that there was a good chance at re-signing them though. Fisher apparently did, and it paid off.

My question is, why couldn't Atlanta core McCoughtry and then let her do the same thing by allowing her to talk to other teams – and if she picked someone else, Atlanta could've at least put together a simple deal (à la Chiney Ogwumike's trade from CT to LA) that wouldn't have allowed themselves to get completely fleeced? Laughing



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