It’s really hard to find somebody who has ever shut up their critics more than Tennessee Lady Vols legend Candace Parker has in the past year. This dates back to 2016 with multiple championships and individual awards, but in recent years, she has been doing it a lot on Derek Fisher.
Since 2019, Fisher, who gained fame as the point guard for the Los Angeles Lakers during all five of Kobe Bryant’s rings, had been the head coach of the Los Angeles Sparks. He began a period of disrespecting Parker from that moment, only to further embarrass himself. Less than three weeks ago, he was fired midseason.
Meanwhile, Candace Parker has been named a starter in this year’s WNBA All-Star game. It’s Parker’s seventh all-star selection and second straight since joining the Chicago Sky in 2021 after LA let her walk while Fisher was in charge.
Remember, Fisher inexplicably benched Parker in 2019 during the WNBA Playoffs. He reduced her minutes that year to the lowest amount of her career, holding her back from making the all-star game both that season and in 2020.
Still, Parker came back in 2020 and won WNBA Defensive Player of the year despite missing the all-star game again. She was rewarded by, well, being allowed to leave and not having a real offer made to keep her around.
How did she respond? Well, she went home to Chicago, made it back to the all-star game in 2021 and led them to the WNBA Championship. Now, being named an all-star again and a starter, she has set a record at the level of embarrassment she has caused Fisher.
This is Candace Parker’s 15th season in the WNBA, and she’s averaging over 12 points and eight rebounds. Fisher’s decision was an attempt to give off the vibe that she was aging, but she’s back to playing over 28 minutes a game this year, and Chicago is currently second in the East.
Over the past six years, Parker has made a habit out of embarrassing anybody who doubted her. She embarrassed Fisher and the Sparks organization, and she embarrassed the WNBA for seemingly ignoring what she had brought to the table.
Before all of that, though, in 2016, she embarrassed Geno Auriemma. At the time, Auriemma was in the midst of the longest winning streak in college basketball history with the UConn Huskies, who had won four straight national titles. He left Parker off the Olympic team despite her being more than qualified.
That was an added insult to injury as Pat Summitt had passed away that same year. Auriemma was maliciously basking in the suffering that was brought upon all the Tennessee Lady Vols at the time, and it was a sick, twisted move.
Well, Parker Final responded by winning the WNBA and Finals MVP. Auriemma has responded by, well, not winning a national title since then. We wrote about that curse here. Now, with news of UConn recently self-reporting 15 violationssome of which include women’s basketball, Auriemma’s humiliation grows.
There’s no way Candace Parker could flex on Fisher as hard as she has flexed on Auriemma just with that win and Auriemma’s failure to win since then after that decision. However, she is doing a great job forcing Fisher to be humiliated himself at this point, and the all-star start is another flex.