Off the Bounce with Megan Schuster

Megan Schuster
Web Editorial Assistant

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With all of the recent World Cup ferver and the Fourth of July falling this weekend, I got to thinking this week about what it means to represent oneís country (and if youíre sick of hearing about soccer and the World Cup, then I apologize in advanceóIím going somewhere with this, I promise).

For soccer players, there is no larger stage than the World Cup. It comes once every four years, many people never have an opportunity to play in one, and theyíre facing the best players from around the world.

Iíve watched plenty of the tournament this year (and when I say plenty, I mean Iíll be suffering from withdrawls in about a week), and Iíve seen players giving their all for their team, themselves and the pride of their country.

You can see it in their eyes during the playing of their national anthem. When the United States would play and you could hear the haunting ďU-S-AĒ chants from a Brazilian stadium, it gave me chills and Iím sure did the players too.

The World Cup is soccerís biggest stage, and in basketball, thatís the Olympics. Like the World Cup, the summer games happen only once every four years. Teams are extremely competitive and to represent oneís country is a huge honor.

Wearing your nationís colors, going to a foreign land, and trying to prove your strength and determination is one of the most poetic things I can think of. And, on the 2012 U.S. Womenís Olympic Basetball Team, three Lynx players represented their country.

Maya Moore, Lindsay Whalen and Seimone Augustus donned their nationís colors and took home gold for the United States.

Prior to the start of this yearís World Cup, Moore was asked about what it feels like to be a representative for her nation and play for the national basketball team.

ďItís very exciting,Ē Moore said of playing for Team USA. ďItís one of those once in a lifetime moments where a special group of people are put together to try to represent, you know, an entire nation. So thereís a lot of pressure, but itís also really fun. Itís a privilege and the emotion, the motivation, the passion, itís so easy to stir up during world events like this.Ē

Not only do Lynx players represent their country during the Olympics, but most play overseas during the WNBA off-season. They play all over the world, from China to Spain to Australia and more.

Through their skills, behavior on and off the court, and overall work ethic, they represent the Lynx, the WNBA, and, in a way, their country.

Lucky for us, theyíre a pretty great representation. So to everyone out there, Happy (belated) Fourth of July! I hope it was a very patriotic weekend and full of WNBA basketball.

For more news and notes on the team follow the Minnesota Lynx on Twitter.

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