Or when he drove Monique to Bullis, the elite Potomac private school where she was a two-time All-Met and encountered her first indoor pool during a weekend sleepover. Michael Currie got lost, turned down the driveway of a mansion and then wondered aloud, “This is somebody’s home?”
He recently got rid of the Chrysler 300 that took him to and from all of Monique’s games at Duke, even while he worked the graveyard shift as a refrigeration technician at Giant for 30 years. But he still wears the 2003 Final Four ring Monique gave to him.
Finally, the topic of this season (and the knee injury that forced his daughter to miss most of the 2011 campaign) came up, and the man Monique sheepishly says “will talk a hole in your head” couldn’t hold in his excitement any longer.
“Mo’s full potential — that’s what you’re gonna see this year,” Currie said. “You know, it gets to a point where she just has to take over, and that’s why I’m her biggest fan. When she takes over, you’re gonna see a show.”
The Mystics, who begin their regular season Saturday at Verizon Center against the Chicago Sky, are counting on his prediction to come true after stumbling to a 6-28 record last year.
Trudi Lacey, the team’s general manager and coach, upgraded the roster with veteran role players this offseason, and former face of the franchise Alana Beard left via free agency after battling injuries in recent years.
Monique Currie, 29, is now starting her sixth season with the team, and her full-time return to the lineup will help determine if the Mystics can duplicate their success from two years ago, when they finished with the best regular season record in the WNBA’s Eastern Conference.
Named to her first WNBA all-star game in 2010, the 6-foot forward averaged a career-high 14.1 points and 4.8 rebounds per game that year and, “it felt like things were finally coming into order,” after a stellar college career at Duke, Currie said recently. But she tore her left anterior cruciate ligament while playing overseas in Turkey in January 2010, and since then a lot has changed within the Mystics organization.
Coach Julie Plank and general manager Angela Taylor left and were replaced by Lacey, who became the franchise’s 12th coach in 15 years before last season. Currie, meanwhile, is one of just three players remaining on the roster from two years ago.
Currie also lost her best friend, Beard. In an odd twist, Currie will need to replace Beard’s production, similar to what happened at Duke when Beard was two years ahead of Currie.