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STILL diving…

just like my poor, disheartened, displaced Lib. Sigh.

On a better note; looks like Beryl has become “just” a heavy rainstorm. St. Thomas breathes a sigh of relief, but there are still plenty of “blue tarp homes” that will struggle in the face of heavy rains. It would be cool if media folks paid attention….

Meanwhile, underwater:

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Smooth Trunkfish

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Arrow Crab

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Perennially shy Queen Angelfish

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Hogfish Snapper – goin’ right!

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Hogfish Snapper, goin’ left!

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Juvenile Spotted Drum

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Just a little closer on the Spotted Drum. Fuzzy, I know, but they move like ribbon dancers…

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Trunkfish on the move

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Can you spot the Southern Ray?

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Thar She Blows!!!!

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Thar She Goes!!!!

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You. Can’t. See. Me.

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Just talkin’ about the games….

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Grey Angelfish

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Lizardfish

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“Tryin’ to nap here….”

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“Fine! I’m up!”

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“BRB. Gotta go pick up some groceries…”

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Still…

Diving….

Spotted Eagle Ray (sorry about the visibility) Here it comes!PICT0700.jpgPICT0701.jpgPICT0702.jpgPICT0703.jpg

There it goes!

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Baby Spotted Drums

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Grown Spotted Drum

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Squid!

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Spotfin Porcupine Fish (Puffer)

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Permit Jack (I think…my first spotting!)

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Spotted Trunk Fish

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Nature

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Gone…

Diving…

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Green and Yellow ruled Green and Blue: Seattle rolled over Dallas by 21.

Yah, ’twas ugly. Sparks snuffed out Westchester by 26.

 Rachel roared, helping the Sun soar over Indiana, 87-78.

Age before….youth, as the Lynx trumped the Aces, 88-73.

Did they listen? Nope. Chicago over Phoenix, 97-88 . Question: should we be worried about Diana’s back?

Up Tuesday

In the meantime: 

CBS Sports: WNBA Power Rankings: Sparks take the top spot, while rival Lynx start to heat up

It’s that time! ESPN The Magazine‘s Body Issue 2018.

You have to wonder what the trophy case at Sue Bird and Megan Rapinoe’s place looks like, other than really, really big. The superstar athletes, who made their relationship public in July 2017, have been dominating their respective sports (Bird in basketball, Rapinoe in soccer) for over a decade. Together, they’ve got five Olympic gold medals — along with plenty of muscle and scars — to show for it. On the set of their recent Body Issue photo shoot, the couple sat down with ESPN’s Jemele Hill to talk about battling injuries, having to kick their nutrition up a notch and who would win in a foot race.

Swish Appeal: Hoops Happening: Sue Bird, Megan Rapinoe become first gay couple featured in ESPN’s ‘Body Issue’

Picking a 2018 WNBA All-Star from Each Team

The Unsung 2018 WNBA All-Stars: A list of WNBA players who have never been All-Stars and deserve a shot at making the team this year.

Yes, WNBA Stars Should Be Paid More Than NBA Referees

Inside The W: Love & Basketball for Dupree, Bonner

On this particular day, DeWanna Bonner is sitting in an airport waiting to board a flight to Chicago, the start of a 10-day road trip for the Phoenix Mercury.

Candice Dupree, meanwhile, is in the air on this same morning flying back to Indianapolis from Seattle, ending a five-day trip to the West Coast.

This is how the summer of 2018 looks for the WNBA veteran stars, who were married in the fall of 2016 and are juggling their first WNBA season together as parents to 10-month-old twin girls, Cali and Demi.

Social Recap: #WNBAPride at the NYC Pride March

NCAA

Ohio: Three newest members of Dayton women’s basketball team arrive on campus

Arkansas: Ramirez talks transfer to Razorbacks

A loss: Veteran women’s college basketball ref Rachelle Jones dies

Veteran women’s college basketball official Rachelle Jones has died after a seven-year fight with cancer.

Jones died June 18 in a hospital in the New York area.

The 51-year-old had been one of the top referees for the past few years and was rewarded with her first Final Four in 2017. Jones served as an alternate official in Dallas and handled off-court duties, such as assisting with instant replay reviews.

“It was so special, unbelievable,” she recalled in an interview with the AP in March of her trip to Dallas. “The Final Four atmosphere is just amazing. They put a lot into that tournament. The way they treat the officials is just great. I wish everyone could experience it.”

Gonna have to use multiple platforms to keep up, though….

4pm: Seattle v. Dallas or, as I tend to think of it, GreenYellow v. Green Blue. Really looking forward to this game, as both teams are finding their groove.

5pm: LA v. Westchester. Oooof, with the Sparks coming off a stomping, this could get ugly.

6pm: Indiana v. Connecticut: “Looking for Win Two” faces “Looking to End a Losing Streak.”

6pm: Las Vegas v. Minnesota: The Newbies v. The Oldies. Which of these teams will maintain their groove from their previous games?

6pm: Phoenix v. Chicago: Great game for the to regain their focus, but let’s not take the Sky lightly, shall we?

From BDuD: The Money Line: Spread trends to know for today’s games

We are about a third of the way through the season and with the exception of the Indiana Fever, it would appear every team is in playoff contention. The Lynx have rattled off three wins in a row and appear to be taking shape, while the Sun find themselves on a four-game skid after starting the season 7-1. Both those teams, along with eight others, are in action tonight and there are a handful of trends to know for each game when looking from a betting perspective.

Hashtag Basketball: The Unsung 2018 WNBA All-Stars

Important: Breanna Stewart opens up about her story of sexual abuse

Stewart tells her story in an E:60 feature today at 9 a.m. This is an online exclusive story from ESPN The Magazine’s Body Issue 2018.

Last October Breanna Stewart — four-time NCAA champion, No. 1 pick in the WNBA draft, WNBA All-Star in her second season — joined the #MeToo movement by publishing a powerful essay in The Players’ Tribune in which she detailed years of sexual abuse as a child. The piece was about reclaiming her voice and taking back control of her body. It’s with the same spirit of empowerment that Stewart decided to take part in the 10th edition of the Body Issue: “I’ve really opened myself up to the world this year, so this felt like another part [of that]. It’s hard to open up and tell your story, but it’s worth it. I’ve really embraced myself — being tall, understanding my body — and also the story that my body portrays.” Stewart sat down with espnW’s Julie Foudy to share more details of her story and talk about finding the strength to come forward.

NCAA

Opa! Maryland women’s basketball guard Eleanna Christinaki turning professional in Europe

Arizona Desert SwarmWhy are top recruits flocking to Arizona women’s basketball?

The Tennesseean: Vanderbilt women’s basketball: ACC transfer, five-star signees, major departures

International

“Flat! Flat! Flat!” Interesting night, no?

Don’t see THAT too often. Connecticut had the lead over a rather discombobulated Atlanta, and then they went on and 0-20 run. Dream win by five (welcome back, Ms. Sykes).

Wings of BOOM! Top dog LA went into DFW and got their Sparks handed to them. Dallas by 29.

Tina got her 5000th, but L.V. was playing with house money. Aces pull away in the fourth to win by 10. (oh, and this was cool: Statue of Liberty on Las Vegas Strip dons Aces jersey).

“I’m not dead yet!” Minnesota got their groove back (for a game) and chilled the Merc with an 11-point victory.

The Boss, Sarah Spain showed up (cool) but so did Elena (30-10-6). Washington gets a 16-point win over a struggling Sky.

Shine bright like a diamond! Jewell goes off for 25 and the Storm keep the Fever at one win.

Catching up:

Thanks, Seth: The Liberty Try to Make Westchester Feel Like Home

After Tina Charles and Maya Moore exchanged go-ahead baskets in the final minute of the Liberty’s home opener against the Minnesota Lynx on May 25, a high-ranking W.N.B.A. official sitting courtside proudly remarked, “Who says women can’t play basketball?”

That question was tongue-in-cheek. But a more serious question emerged as Charles and Moore, both Olympic gold medalists and former league most valuable players, dueled inside the Westchester County Center in front of an announced crowd of 2,319.

What constitutes a proper environment for women’s basketball?

Washington Post: Elena Delle Donne took exception to Adam Silver. With that, a WNBA star found her voice.

Think Progress: The first WNBA player to join Kaepernick’s protest refuses to stop kneeling

Sumter Item: No. 1 pick Wilson adjusting to tough life in the WNBA

.com: A’ja Wilson’s Idols Becoming Her Rivals During Stellar Rookie Season

DieHards: Jordin Canada finding her stride in WNBA under mentor Sue Bird

Hero Sports: FanDuel and WNBA Partnership Taking Off

Hashtag Basketball: Evaluating the Dallas Wings through one quarter of the 2018 WNBA season

Hey, remember that time two weeks ago when I said that the Sun couldn’t be stopped?

Well, they were, and now the WNBA’s standings are a bit more complicated than they were at the beginning of the season.

The State: Dawn Staley’s hopeful message to Tiffany Mitchell after her WNBA team’s slow start

Cool: Former UConn Star Diana Taurasi Honored By WNBA For Supporting Single Mothers, LGBTQ Community

.com: Race to MVP (Week 5): Taurasi Joins Griner in Top Five

The Ringer: Diana Taurasi Plays Basketball in a Coat of Invincibility Armor

LVRJ: Bill Laimbeer has game plan for building Aces

Women’s Hoops World: Aces embrace Las Vegas in maiden season

“Our message was, women’s basketball is here, pro hoops has arrived,” said Christine Monjer, Executive Director of marketing for MGM Resorts. “We’re really staking that claim that we do know basketball as a community, and this is basketball you’re going to want to see.”

The Aces are currently in the midst of a rebuilding season, but have set their sights on creating brand awareness this year, without regard to on-court success.

High Post Hoops: Cheryl Reeve: The mileposts on the way to 200 wins

Minneaplois Star Tribune: Is Lynx coach Cheryl Reeve the most powerful sports figure in Minnesota?

Cheryl Reeve has achieved so much with the Minnesota Lynx that she’s now one of the most accomplished coaches in Minnesota sports history.

The journey to get there was not always easy — nor was the path always clear. A standout student and point guard at La Salle University in Philadelphia, Reeve went into coaching and moved her way up the college and professional basketball ranks.

She endured tough early years, with franchises she worked for folding or relocating, but Reeve was able to parlay her role as a well-respected WNBA assistant with Detroit into the Lynx head coaching job starting with the 2010 season.

Michelle: Inside the W with Michelle Smith:

It’s hard to believe that the WNBA season is just about a third of the way through.

Enough time to determine front-runners – teams such as Los Angeles, Phoenix, Seattle and Connecticut. Enough time to determine surprises, disappointments and teams that still have a lot of work to do.

But the breakouts, those players who have gone from being role players to marquee names, those are much easier to spot.

Hashtag Basketball: Facts And Figures: Miscellaneous Numbers From the First Month of the 2018 WNBA Season

Kvetch and be heard? A response from the league on Tuesday’s ‘Hoops Happening‘: A source from the NBA/WNBA reached out to address concerns raised in Tuesday’s column. Here’s a roundup of the points that were addressed.

Although this passage does not include intentional or unintentional critique of the league’s scheduling, I was asked to report that the number of back-to-backs in the WNBA for the 2018 season is 2 games per team, which is close to the all-time low for seasons condensed by international competition: World Cup (WC) and Olympic Games.

From Ray: Anne Donovan truly larger than life, both on and off court

NCAA

Wanna support history? Got an extra 19.82 hanging about? Maybe ya wanna support Rutgers/AIAW’s Forgotten Champions

Woot! ND women’s basketball nominated for three ESPYS

At the symposium, the participants took an active role in exploring many important areas of college athletics, such as: personal branding, individual strengths and values, resume building, interviewing and goal and vision setting.
 
“The symposium consisted of multiple sessions each day on a variety of topics,” Wall said. “All of the speakers were excellent and taught me so much that I didn’t know before. There was so much insight they had to offer.

So now what? I have a 9 month recovery, no more school, no more scholarship check to live on, no more training table every day… crap. When my family asked me my plan, my first idea I shot out was that I was going to be an Uber driver! Yes… a Duke graduate, business masters owning, WNBA draftee Uber driver. Heck, I bet I could get 5 stars and make a name for myself. I was hype about this idea and honestly still may do it in the fall… but luckily another gig panned out in the meantime. I was lucky enough to snag a summer sports marketing internship with an awesome company in Chicago called Intersport. Ask me how I got it if you want to hear a funny story.
International
High School

Anne Donovan, 1961-2018

Mechelle: Anne Donovan played essential role in growth of women’s basketball

It was Dec. 14, 1979, and Scope arena in Norfolk, Virginia, was packed to the rafters with patriotic fever. The Soviet women’s basketball team, on a tour of the United States, was meeting defending national champion Old Dominion in an exhibition.

American hostages had been taken in Iran in November. The Soviets’ invasion of Afghanistan in late December would lead to the United States’ boycotting the 1980 Summer Olympics in Moscow. The Cold War was still red-hot.

On the floor was a very tall, thin, 18-year-old center. A Catholic-school girl from New Jersey whose gentle nature coexisted with her determined competitiveness. Anne Donovan had always loved being on a team but never wanted to stand out. At 6-foot-8, she didn’t have a choice.

Yet somehow, her Old Dominion point guard, Nancy Lieberman, briefly lost sight of Donovan in that game. Crazy as it sounds, Donovan was obscured by one of the few women bigger than she was: the Soviets’ 7-foot-2, 250-pound star center, Uljana Semjonova.

AP Doug: Women’s basketball mourns death of Anne Donovan

To many in the world of women’s basketball, Anne Donovan was a giant. And not just because she stood 6-foot-8.

She won a national championship at Old Dominion, two Olympic gold medals as a player and another as a coach in her storied career.

The 56-year-old Hall of Famer died Wednesday of heart failure, her family said in a statement.

“One of the greater basketball players in her time slot,” Las Vegas Aces coach Bill Laimbeer said. “She stood out for her height, but also her playing ability and continued that throughout her whole life, coaching, her ambassadorship. You name it, she did it.”

Mechelle: Anne Donovan, Hall of Famer and Olympic gold medalist, dies at 56

Out of Paramus (N.J.) Catholic, Donovan was one of the most highly recruited female basketball players in the country in the late 1970s. She picked Old Dominion, in part, because of the success the program had with stars such as Nancy Lieberman, who was a senior when Donovan was a freshman.

“I know that when we were recruiting her, the coaches were saying, ‘You’ve got to see this kid. She’s amazing,'” Lieberman said by phone Wednesday night. “She and I talked a lot about the experience she’d have. We talked about building a legacy, even though we were so young. I don’t think we really knew what a legacy was at that point.

NorthJersey.com: Anne Donovan, a one-of-a-kind athlete in Bergen County

As an eighth-grader playing basketball for Our Lady of Mount Carmel in Ridgewood, Anne Donovan towered over her teammates and the competition. 

“It must have been challenging for the other teams to show up and play us,” her coach back then, Maureen Monroe of Glen Rock, said. “Anne was so considerably taller than the other players. She was leagues above the other players in terms of height.”

Donovan, the Basketball Hall of Famer from Ridgewood who won a national championship at Old Dominion and two Olympic gold medals in the 1980s, and coached the U.S. to gold in 2008, died Wednesday of heart failure. She was 56. 

NorthJersey.com: Anne Donovan: Rose Battaglia, North Jersey athletics world on the basketball legend

Seems only fitting that Anne Donovan spent some of her final hours socializing with the people she knew best — other greats in women’s basketball.

The much decorated player and coach from Ridgewood attended the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame induction ceremony in Knoxville, Tenn., last weekend, at which Dr. Rose Battaglia, her coach at Paramus Catholic High School, was inducted.

The news of Donovan’s passing Wednesday at age 56 of heart failure hit her high school coach and longtime friend Battaglia particularly hard.

NorthJersey.com: What they’re saying about Anne Donovan, North Jersey sports legend

The Virginian-Pilot: Old Dominion basketball legend Anne Donovan dies at age 56

Anne Donovan, a towering figure of the glory years of Old Dominion women’s basketball and a legend in the sport as a coach and player on the professional and Olympic levels, died Wednesday of heart failure. She was 56.

The 6-foot-8 Donovan played for the Lady Monarchs from 1979 to 1983, and teamed with Nancy Lieberman to lead ODU to the AIAW national championship in 1980.

TeamUSA.org: Anne Donovan, Only Woman To Win Olympic Basketball Gold As Player And Coach, Dies At 56

At 6-foot-8, Anne Donovan towered over opponents on the court, but stood even taller off of it with her contributions to USA Basketball and the sport as a whole.

Donovan died Wednesday at the age of 56 due to heart failure, leaving a lasting legacy as a decorated player, coach and pioneer of women’s basketball in the United States.

A native of Ridgewood, New Jersey, Donovan was a two-time state champion in high school before going on to play at Old Dominion. With the Lady Monarchs, she won the first-ever women’s Naismith College Player of the Year award in 1983.

With no professional league at the time in the U.S., Donovan played her pro ball overseas. But it was with Team USA where she perhaps starred the most, winning Olympic gold medals in 1984 and 1988.

High Post Hoops: Anne Donovan, Basketball Hall of Famer, dead at 56

A life that included so many successes, building women’s basketball in every way, is over much too soon.

Anne Donovan, a champion by every measure, a game-changing player and coach whose imprint on the game of basketball will continue for decades to come, has died at the age of 56, Mechelle Voepel of ESPN.com reported Wednesday night.

 

Donovan, a 6’8 paradigm-shifting center, grew up dominating the opposition in Paramus, NJ, before heading to Old Dominion to win the 1980 AIAW (forerunner to NCAA tournament) championship and reach the 1982 Final Four. Donovan remains the NCAA’s all-time leader in blocked shots, with 801.

Indy Star: First Indiana Fever coach dies at 56

“First and foremost, she was a personal friend of mine,” added Krauskopf. “I have lost a friend and someone who’s had an impact on the basketball world, certainly with the Fever. She’ll forever be part of our history. She’s always been a part of our family.”

“We’ve shared a lot of stories and a lot of laughs over that first season. There will never be another first year. And there will never be another Anne Donovan. She was a professional and a class act. The roots of women’s basketball are embedded with her name, and so is our franchise.”

The Day: Anne Donovan was much more than just a basketball legend

The following juxtaposition applies to all of humanity:

There’s what we do: Anne Donovan was a basketball coach who led the United States to Olympic Gold, the Seattle Storm to a WNBA championship and later walked among us, coaching the Connecticut Sun.

And then there’s who we really are: Anne Donovan was a gentle soul. Yes. This is where it begins and ends with her. A gentle soul with a puckish sense of humor, big family and many friends who were lucky enough to be in her life.

It was with unspeakable sorrow that we learned of Anne Donovan’s death during Wednesday night’s Sun-Mystics game, the most surreal night in the history of the franchise and the arena.

Anne Donovan died the night the man she replaced here in Connecticut, Mike Thibault, was coaching the other team.

She was 56.

“A great friend,” Thibault said. “I don’t know what to say. All the basketball stuff goes away when you have this kind of stuff happen.”

NH Register: Anne Donovan was towering, on and off the court

There was something surreal and undeniably sad about the moment. Pacing one bench was Mike Thibault of the Washington Mystics, the man who was replaced by Anne Donovan as coach of the Connecticut Sun. Pacing the other was Curt Miller, the man who replaced Donovan.

And now, squeezed between the two, as two WNBA teams raced the floor at Mohegan Sun Arena Wednesday night, was this horrible news that Anne Donovan was dead of heart failure at age 56.

Seattle Times: Hall of Famer and Olympic gold medalist Anne Donovan, who led Storm to a championship, dies

USAToday: Anne Donovan through the years

Washington Post: Death of Anne Donovan, legendary women’s basketball star and coach, stuns sports world

Washington Post: How Anne Donovan was a trailblazer in women’s basketball

USAToday: Anne Donovan, Olympic gold medalist, basketball Hall of Famer, dies at 56

NPR: Anne Donovan, A Basketball Legend As A Player And Coach, Dies At 56

“She brought half of us here and hearing about it at halftime, it really put me in shock,” Sun guard Alex Bentley said. “That second half was for her, just to fight for her. It is crazy. 

“She just got us on the court. She was really connected to how we played, our style of play. She brought me here so I had a special relationship with her because she was one of those coaches who completely put her faith in me and believed in me, pushed me, challenged me. I am definitely going to miss her.”

As small Anne story from me: When she was coach of the New York Liberty, I was hosting a group of female college students from the UAE. Took them to a game (they were ecstatic) and we met with coach Donovan after. She was shy and humble. They were shy and in awe. It was beautiful.

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