Like they did in 2011, and in 2013, and in 2015, the Minnesota Lynx hoisted up the WNBA championship trophy last October. It was a special win, avenging a loss to the Sparks in the 2016 Finals, but there is also apparently something different with that win: No call from President Donald Trump or the White House has followed it.
Lynx coach and general manager Cheryl Reeve appeared on the Sports Media Podcast hosted by The Athletic’s Richard Deitsch and revealed the curious situation, noting that former President Barack Obama’s administration called the team within 24 hours to congratulate them and invite them to the White House during their other three championships.
“This President may have a different protocol, but to this point — we won in October — we have not heard anything from the White House with regard to either a note of congratulations or even offering to visit at some point during this upcoming summer,” Reeve said, per The Athletic.
The Lynx have previously visited the White House when in Washington to play the Mystics. Those dates this year are May 27 and June 7, so Trump could theoretically still send an invite, it would just be much more difficult for both sides to make the schedule work than if the invite had been made back in October.
There could be a number of reasons why Trump has not extended the invite yet. Lynx forward Rebekkah Brunson told the Star-Tribune in October that she would not visit the White House if invited. A situation like that led to a very public dis-invitation in the past, when Trump tweeted that he was revoking the Warriors’ invite after Steph Curry made it clear he wasn’t interested in attending.
White House visits for athletes have also seemed to just be a headache for Trump’s White House, like the time last week when a comment of his was interpreted to be insulting to Paralympic athletes or when a photo comparison from The New York Times made it look like the Patriots’ delegation was lighter for Trump than Obama.
Even if every Lynx player was publicly interested in attending and received an invitation, a visit wouldn’t have been guaranteed. Obama sent a congratulatory letter to the Sparks after winning in 2016. Such a message has yet to come from Trump.
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