Super team, super fans

Posted on 09 Jun 2017 at 7:00am

Gerber, Slonhim join other Dallas Wings in helping the WNBA team celebrate Pride Night on June 16

Dallas-Wings

Suzanne Slonim, right, and Pam Gerber, second from right, enjoy a recent Dallas Wings game with friends and fellow WNBA fans Linda Miller, left, and Laurie Foley.

 

 

Partners Pam Gerber and Suzanne Slonim may be relatively new fans of the WNBA and the Dallas Wings. But there aren’t many fans who are more fervent. As the team and their fans — including Gerber and Slonim — gear up Dallas Wings Pride Night on June 16, the couple took a few minutes to talk about why they love Dallas Wings and why they think everyone else should, too.

— Tammye Nash

Dallas Voice: How long have you been WNBA fans? Pam Gerber and Suzanne Slonim: Since the season started. We couldn’t imagine missing a game!

Did either of you ever play basketball in college or high school? Nope, But we played one on TV. (Oy!)

This is the Wings’ second year in Dallas. Were you fans of the Tulsa Shock before they moved and became Dallas Wings? No, but we’re excited that they found their way here.

Do you have other favorite WNBA teams? Not a chance!

Are you season ticket holders? We sure are, and we’re doing everything we can to get more people to sign up.  We enjoy the spirit of SECTION 102 (WooooHooooo!) and know the excitement will increase along with the growing fan base.

How many games do you go to each season? So far we’ve attended every home game but haven’t ventured out of Arlington. Yet.
Do you have a favorite player? We actually have two: Kayla Thornton [a second-year WNBA player out of UT-El Paso who wears No. 6 for the Wings]. She’s as fast as a bullet and weaves through the opponents like they were standing still. And Karima Christmas-Kelly — she’s from Duke. ’Nough said. [Christmas-Kelly is in her seventh year in the WNBA  and wears No. 13).

What do you think of the Dallas Wings rookies this year? We’re excited about our great picks. The Wings are destined to be unstoppable. (Rookies on the team are Evelyn Akhator, Kentucky, No. 9; Saniya Chong, Connecticut, No. 12; Kaela Davis, South Carolina, No. 10; Allisha Gray, South Carolina, No. 15, and Breanna Lewis, Kansas State, No. 22. Both Gray and Davis were leaders on South Carolina’s NCAA championship team this year, and Gray was named WNBA Rookie of the Month for May.)

What is it about Dallas Wings and Wings games that makes them so much fun? What drew you in to be such big fans? Aside from the fact that it’s our team right here in our backyard, we enjoy watching the team’s energy and feeling the spirit of the crowd.

Nancy Lieberman inspired us to amplify the power of professional women in sports. They’re exciting to watch and add value to our community. (The Dallas Wings honored basketball Hall of Famer Nancy Lieberman on Sunday, June 11 during the team’s game against the Minnesota Lynx. Lieberman was the first draft pick for the Women’s Professional Basketball League’s Dallas Diamonds in 1981, and in 1984 she led the team to the Women’s American Basketball Association championship. Lieberman’s resume includes WNBA player and assistant coach of The Sacramento Kings, general manager, sportscaster, author, speaker and two-time Olympian. She is also a member of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame, and The New York, Virginia and Hampton Roads Hall of Fames.)

What are people missing out on if they don’t go to the Dallas Wings games? They are missing that feeling of making a difference for the role of women in sports. And a lot of white-knuckle excitement!

And the bonus question: What does it mean to you to see the WNBA and Dallas Wings celebrating LGBT Pride Month? What role does that play in making you such big fans? We’re psyched that the WNBA acknowledges and celebrates the contribution of its LGBT players, staff and fans. We feel great about supporting a venture that supports our community.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition June 9, 2017.

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