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 ones country (and if youre sick of hearing about soccer and the World Cup, then I apologize in advanceIm 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 theyre facing the best players from around the world.

Ive watched plenty of the tournament this year (and when I say plenty, I mean Ill be suffering from withdrawls in about a week), and Ive 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 U-S-A chants from a Brazilian stadium, it gave me chills and Im sure did the players too.

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

Wearing your nations 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. Womens Olympic Basetball Team, three Lynx players represented their country.

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

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

Its very exciting, Moore said of playing for Team USA. Its 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 theres a lot of pressure, but its also really fun. Its a privilege and the emotion, the motivation, the passion, its so easy to stir up during world events like this.

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, theyre 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.