“Sometimes I think that the rights in Russia are issued only crazy,” the legendary phrase of the legendary Becky Hammon. Tiny defender was not 170 cm, but this is easily offset by its sheer charisma. Even in the most intense matches, she was unfazed, continuing to quietly chew gum. In Russia is not always naturalized player becomes his. But it is certainly not the case.
Hammon arrived in Russia in 2007, when she decided to play in CSKA. Together with the contract she was offered, and citizenship. Surprisingly, a player of such talent was not needed in the United States. The decision of the basketball player explained one thing — the desire to win. But resentment against the American basketball functionaries like read between the lines.
“The situation with the national team I was very angry. But as soon as I made the decision on naturalization, he immediately calmed down. Understand the choice of women’s team USA underwater subject to political currents. Enormous role played by personal relationships of players with the managers, with the coaches. After all, most of the girls involved in national team since 13 – 14 years. Once on the “radar” basketball functionaries only 25 to 26 years, it is very difficult to break into this system. For me, the door was actually closed. So, we had to look for another,” said Hammon about your choice.
As in the case of J. R. Holden (CSKA defender had obtained Russian citizenship four years earlier), the presence of Hammon in the national team affected only positively. Outstanding playmaker, turning at any moment into a super-sniper — the perfect weapon for any coach. In August 2008, a naturalized American won “bronze” the Olympic games in Beijing. Then, of course, no one could not assume that the women’s team this medal will be the last at this level for many years. That is why the exploits of Becky and her game in the form of the national team are kept in memory to this day. Moreover, the Hammon after he helped the Russian team to take another medal at an international tournament.
The next major tournament for Hammon in the Russian team championship of Europe 2009 — was under threat. Due to the existing contract with the club WNBA “San Antonio” point guard was obliged to fly to the USA and play in the championship, which is superimposed in time in the group stage of the women’s Eurobasket. And now, feel the attitude of the American in our team, its not just released, but still kept the place under games in the playoffs.
Already through two games after returning from the USA Becky proved that waited for her in vain. In fact, in his debut in the tournament games against France and Latvia, she spent 34 and 40 minutes, respectively, scoring 18 and 11 points in each of the meetings. But the semi-final with Spain on 19 June 2009, it turned out just divine! In
Hammon played in the style of his idol Michael Jordan. It tore the protection of the Spanish passages, “bombarded” from behind the arc, strained their opponents in defense. In the end, in 31 minutes of playing time Becky realized 10 of 14 shots from the field and 4 of 5 long attempts. How do you mean?
Unfortunately, the final match against France will not be nearly so successful. And if from the middle distance and something else was able to score, then 0/8 from a distance look quite sad. The finals, the Russians lost despite a comeback in the fourth quarter. After will be another Olympics in London with a “wooden” medals, where Hammon will go to the age of 35, but will play at the highest level.
It remains with your favorite game and after a career. First, Hammon successfully sued a couple of hundred thousand dollars from Orenburg “Hope”, where she was trying to get rid of the wording “does not correspond to level”. And after beginning his coaching career, which predict a great future. Partner of LeBron James on the Lakers Danny green, who worked under the guidance of Hammon in “San Antonio” without constraint Becky recorded the five best coaches in his career. Even Barack Obama congratulated her on an official assignment to the “spurs”.
Over the years the legend of all coaches, Greg Popovich, Hammon learned a lot. The master admits that his assistant of many more competent men and are quite willing to lead the NBA, becoming the first woman in history who stood at the helm of the club. Apparently, it is a matter of time. At the end of 2019 Becky was close to signing a contract with “new York Knicks”, but it did not happen. Perhaps she will change her teacher Gregg Popovich after he announced retirement after the Olympics in Tokyo.