CONGRATULATING DETROIT SHOCK FOR WINNING 2003 WOMEN'S NATIONAL BASKETBALL ASSOCIATION CHAMPIONSHIP
(House of Representatives - March 09, 2004)

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[Pages H887-H888]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]




    CONGRATULATING DETROIT SHOCK FOR WINNING 2003 WOMEN'S NATIONAL 
                  BASKETBALL ASSOCIATION CHAMPIONSHIP

  Mrs. MILLER of Michigan. Mr. Speaker, I move to suspend the rules and 
agree to the resolution (H. Res. 392) congratulating the Detroit Shock 
for winning the 2003 Women's National Basketball Association 
championship.
  The Clerk read as follows:

                              H. Res. 392

       Whereas on September 16, 2003, the Detroit Shock won the 
     2003 Women's National Basketball Association championship, 
     defeating the 2-time defending champion Los Angeles Sparks;
       Whereas the Shock finished at the top of the Eastern 
     Conference with an outstanding 25-win season;
       Whereas the Shock defeated the Cleveland Rockers 2 games to 
     1 in the first round of the playoffs;
       Whereas the Shock defeated the Connecticut Sun 2 games to 
     none in the Eastern Conference finals;
       Whereas in the finals against the Sparks the Shock won 2 
     straight games after losing the opening game;
       Whereas Ruth Riley scored a career-high 27 points in the 
     final game;
       Whereas in the final game Deanna Nolan nailed a 3-pointer 
     with 53 seconds remaining, and made 4 out of 4 free throws 
     down the stretch;
       Whereas 22,076 attended the final game, setting a new 
     attendance record for the WNBA;
       Whereas the Shock made an unprecedented turnaround in the 
     2003 season under the leadership of their coach, the former 
     Detroit Piston and NBA champion Bill Laimbeer, who was named 
     2003 WNBA Coach of the Year;
       Whereas Coach Laimbeer and his staff of Laurie Byrd, Pamela 
     McGee, and Korie Hlede provided strong leadership and solid 
     coaching, resulting in a basketball team which has been 
     undeniably dominant in regular and postseason play;
       Whereas many other individuals have contributed to the 
     Shock's success, including athletic trainer Laura Ramus;
       Whereas the Shock's success resulted from contributions 
     from the entire roster of players, including Swin Cash, 
     Allison Curtin, Barbara Farris, Cheryl Ford, Kedra Holland-
     Corn, Sheila Lambert, Astou Ndiaye-Diatta, Deanna Nolan, 
     Elaine Powell, Ruth Riley, Stacey Thomas, Petra Ujhelyi, and 
     Ayana Walker;
       Whereas 3 Shock players, Cheryl Ford, Swin Cash, and Deanna 
     Nolan, were named to the all-WNBA second team;
       Whereas Cheryl Ford was named 2003 WNBA rookie of the year, 
     receiving 49 out of 54 possible votes;
       Whereas Ruth Riley was named Most Valuable Player of the 
     2003 WNBA Finals MVP;
       Whereas the WNBA and the Shock exemplify the highest 
     standards of sportsmanship and success, and help to encourage 
     the participation of women in professional sports; and
       Whereas the Shock have displayed great strength, ability, 
     and perseverance this season, which are all reflective of the 
     hardworking people of the metropolitan Detroit region and the 
     great State of Michigan: Now, therefore, be it
       Resolved, That the House of Representatives--
       (1) congratulates the Detroit Shock for winning the 2003 
     Women's National Basketball championship and for their 
     outstanding performance during the entire 2003 season, and 
     congratulates all of the 8 WNBA teams who played in the 
     postseason;
       (2) salutes the achievements of all of the players, 
     coaches, and staff of the Shock, who worked hard and who were 
     instrumental in bringing the City of Detroit its first WNBA 
     championship;
       (3) commends the Los Angeles Sparks for a valiant 
     performance during the playoff finals and for displaying 
     their strength and skill as a team; and
       (4) directs the Clerk of the House of Representatives to 
     transmit an enrolled copy of this resolution to the Shock 
     players, Head Coach Bill Laimbeer, and President and team 
     owner William Davidson.

  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Pursuant to the rule, the gentlewoman from 
Michigan (Mrs. Miller) and the gentlewoman from the District of 
Columbia (Ms. Norton) each will control 20 minutes.
  The Chair recognizes the gentlewoman from Michigan (Mrs. Miller).


                             General Leave

  Mrs. MILLER of Michigan. Mr. Speaker, I ask unanimous consent that 
all Members may have 5 legislative days within which to revise and 
extend their remarks on H. Res. 392, the resolution under 
consideration.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Is there objection to the request of the 
gentlewoman from Michigan?
  There was no objection.
  Mrs. MILLER of Michigan. Mr. Speaker, I yield myself as much time as 
I may consume.
  Mr. Speaker, H. Res. 392 congratulates the Detroit Shock for winning 
the 2003 Women's National Basketball Association championship; and 
first of all, I would like to thank the gentleman from Michigan (Mr. 
Conyers) for introducing this resolution, and I also want to thank all 
of my fellow colleagues from the Michigan delegation who have joined me 
in cosponsoring H. Res. 392.
  Mr. Speaker, on September 16, 2003, the Detroit Shock defeated the 2-
time defending champion Los Angeles Sparks to win their first WNBA 
championship. The Shock team is comprised of a wonderful group of women 
who continue the strong tradition of professional basketball in 
Michigan. In fact, the Shock are coached by one of the leaders of the 
2-time NBA champion Detroit Pistons, the ultimate bad boy, the baddest 
of the bad boys, Bill Laimbeer.

                              {time}  1500

  Under the leadership of Coach Bill Laimbeer and of his staff of 
Laurie Byrd, Pamela McGee, and Korie Hlede, the Detroit Shocks made an 
unbelievable turnaround during the 2003 season to become champions. The 
team won 25 games last summer, after winning only nine games the year 
previously.
  In an era where some athletes are embroiled in steroid scandals, 
salary contract negotiations, and legal battles, the women of the 
Detroit Shocks, and I think the entire WNBA serve as a valuable role 
model to millions of young girls. I applaud every member of the Shock 
roster for their dedication and for their hard work, and I thank them 
for their commitment to our community. Even though they are champions 
on the court, each member of the team is a champion in her own right 
off the court as well.
  Mr. Speaker, the Detroit Shocks have made the metropolitan Detroit 
area and the great State of Michigan proud. In fact, 22,076 fans 
attended the final game of the season, which was a new attendance 
record for the WNBA. Three of their players, Cheryl Ford, Swin Cash, 
and Deanna Nolan were named to the all-WNBA second team; and Ruth Riley 
2003 WNBA finals MVP. But unlike many professional teams in sports 
today, there are no individuals on this team. They are simply the 
Detroit Shocks, and they are champions.
  Mr. Speaker, I support House Resolution 392.
  Mr. Speaker, I reserve the balance of my time.
  Ms. NORTON. Mr. Speaker, I yield myself such time as I may consume.
  The Detroit Shocks proved they were the best team in the league last 
September when they came from behind and knocked out the two-time 
defending champions the Los Angeles Sparks before the league's largest 
crowd in history, with a score of 83 to 78.
  The Shocks started the game with a 14-point lead, but the Sparks kept 
coming back. With less than a minute left in the game, Deanna Nolan 
nailed a three-pointer from the corner and gave the Shocks a 75-73 
lead. Then Cheryl Ford hit three free throws and it was a four-point 
lead with 43 seconds left.

[[Page H888]]

  Just when you thought the Shocks had it all wrapped up, the Sparks 
made a comeback, twice. But the Shocks pulled out a win, and a 
franchise that was down and out a year before was accepting the Women's 
National Basketball Association championship.
  Head Coach Bill Laimbeer and his staff of Laurie Byrd, Pamela McGee, 
and Korie Hlede provided strong leadership and solid coaching. This has 
resulted in a basketball team that is hard working and dominates on the 
basketball court.
  The Women's National Basketball Association and the Detroit Shocks 
exemplify the highest standards of sportsmanship and success, and as 
such, have encouraged girls and women across the country to participate 
in professional sports. I congratulate them on a well-deserved win and 
urge the passage of this resolution.
  Mr. CONYERS. Mr. Speaker, today I rise to honor the women of the 
Detroit Shock Women's National Basketball Association team. On 
September 16, 2003, the ladies of the Detroit Shock made history with 
their first ever Women's National Basketball Association championship, 
defeating the 2-time defending champion Los Angeles Sparks. Through the 
leadership of Rookie of the Year Cheryl Ford, Playoff MVP Ruth Riley, 
and Coach Bill Laimbeer, the Shocks displayed strength, resolve and the 
highest standard of sportsmanship.
  It is fitting that H. Res. 392 will be passed today, just one day 
after International Women's Day and during National Women's Month. This 
month we are celebrating the great strides women have made in society, 
and must recognize and highlight the advancements women have made in 
professional sports. Since the passage of Title IX, which mandates 
gender equity in school sports, we have seen women's athletics flourish 
as a tool for empowering young girls. College basketball programs 
across the country have produced some of the most dynamic athletes of 
our time--including Cheryl Ford and Ruth Riley of the Shock, as well as 
Diana Taurasi of the University of Connecticut. These young women are 
clear examples to the younger generation of girls that the pursuit of 
athletic excellence can produce the highest rewards for women and men 
alike.
  The Detroit Shock team has made metropolitan Detroit and greater 
Michigan proud by displaying the trademark Michigan values of hard 
work, dedication, and perseverance. We honor these women for their 
strength and resolve, and for being leaders of the next generation of 
women in sports. We look forward to another win this year!
  Mr. Speaker, I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. MICHAUD. Mr. Speaker, I have no further requests for time, I urge 
all Members to support the adoption of H. Res. 392, and I yield back 
the balance of my time.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore (Mr. Terry). The question is on the motion 
offered by the gentlewoman from Michigan (Mrs. Miller) that the House 
suspend the rules and agree to the resolution, H. Res. 392.
  The question was taken.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. In the opinion of the Chair, two-thirds of 
those present have voted in the affirmative.
  Mrs. MILLER of Michigan. Mr. Speaker, on that I demand the yeas and 
nays.
  The yeas and nays were ordered.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Pursuant to clause 8 of rule XX and the 
Chair's prior announcement, further proceedings on this motion will be 
postponed.

                          ____________________