Sparks

Jordin Canada Brings Poise In Los Angeles Homecoming

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Americans have a fascination with endings. It’s the Arike Ogunbowale buzzer-beaters, the Brandi Chastain goal, and Candace Parker crying as the final seconds tick away in the Finals. But maybe there is more to life than the split-second highlight at the end. For Jordin Canada, her new career as a Los Angeles Spark already has meaning. After four years in Seattle, including two championships, Canada prepares for an experience so much more rewarding than the millisecond of crossing a finish line: an indefinite, open future full of possibility.

No One’s Backup

After four successful years of helping build UCLA’s program, Canada signed with Seattle. She served as an understudy of legend Sue Bird in 2018 as the Storm won the WNBA championship. However, with Bird sitting out in 2019 due to a knee injury, the Storm suddenly handed her the starting point guard role.

Canada served more than capably, becoming arguably the most focused hustle player in the WNBA. She returned to her backup role the next two seasons, competently providing enough minutes for a ring in the 2020 wubble and what could have been another title were it not for an untimely Achilles injury to Breanna Stewart.

But Los Angeles is Canada’s hometown, and roots speak loudly. With the Sparks retooling after a disappointing 2021, her next move wasn’t a step towards a finish line: it was a pen stroke start.

Wheel Circles Back

In her welcoming press conference, did Canada express reluctance to join a new franchise?

Nope. She began by stating, “I’m super excited to be a part of this championship organization.”

Canada avoided the common trap with last-second thinking: a loss of perspective. Although some fans can’t calculate WNBA success correctly, she acknowledged Los Angeles’s championship history. (Perhaps because the W is gaining ground so quickly!)

W Lead asked Canada which aspect of playing for LA she most anticipated. With Canada secluded in a Hungarian hotel, perhaps the future of pacific coast basketball would be too remote.

But, ah, by contrast!

Canada quickly responded, “playing with my teammates, honestly. It’s a new team, I’m part of a new group, and I’m just excited to be a part of the team and seeing how I fit in and where I could bring my strengths and learning from my coaching staff and being able to develop my game.”

Canada confirmed riding time’s wheel forward, yet back, to Los Angeles brings promise.

“And also being back at home, having my friends and my family that got to see me play at UCLA for four years, and now being able to come back and catch some games at crypto arena.com [Crypto.com Arena].”

Homecoming is so much more than a fun week in high school. For Canada, it’s a vital part of her career’s new stage.

“I think it’s going to be really special for me to have a homecoming and just to have that family support and fan base system that I’ve had over the last four seasons while I was at UCLA.”

What will the future hold? As always, WNBA fans must solely imagine. But, this time, it’s a brilliant image.

Where It All Started

A basketball court, of course, is a rectangle. And yet, it’s never a straight line from grabbing a rebound under one’s basket to a layup on the other end. Canada experienced tremendous success away from home, but now she’s darted back. While her location returns to a previous state, Canada circles up in the game of life.

After shrugging off a too-long yet successful offseason, Canada and the Sparks do not need to pray for a lucky bounce in the lottery. (They couldn’t anyway, with the pick swapped for Canada’s excellent new teammate, Chennedy Carter.) Here’s a starting point quickly coming into probability’s view: Canada beams in her hometown with her new teammates as the Sparks open the 2022 playoffs at home.

About Jeffrey Newholm

"Jammin Jeff" Newholm had been a basketball fanatic since his high school days, and remained a casual fan as a student in Whitewater. Wishing to check in as an active participant, he also completed a writing certificate program at UWM. He loves seeing Bucks games more than any other activity in hometown Milwaukee and especially screaming really really loudly to get someone to miss a free throw. Twitter: @JeffreyNewholm

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