Before ascending to the Space Needle roof, Breanna Stewart assured her Storm teammates who are afraid of heights that the journey to the top was worth every step.
On a blustery Friday morning, they climbed to the roof and huddled for pictures with Storm owners Dawn Trudeau, Ginny Gilder and Mayor Jenny Durkan.
Then one by one players hoisted a giant Storm flag to the top of the spire to signal the start of the WNBA Finals, which begins 6 p.m. Friday against the Washington Mystics.
“It never gets old,” said league MVP Stewart, who been had been to the Space Needle’s roof twice before. “Not many people get to come up here and then to raise this flag of the Seattle Storm and let the city know what’s going on with the WNBA Finals, there’s nothing better.”
All-Star guard Jewell Loyd feels the support of fans eager for the Storm to capture a third WNBA title.
“Being up here makes you realize and appreciate the opportunity you have,” Loyd said. “This is something special. It’s bigger than us. It’s bigger than basketball. This is for the city. Everyone is going to see this flag and know what’s going on.
“This is not about us. Not at all. We’re trying to win a championship for the city.”
Storm players Alysha Clark, Natasha Howard and Sami Whitcomb – a trio that wasn’t comfortable being 570 feet in the air – joined Stewart and Loyd for the flag raising ceremony.
“I’m terrified of heights,” said Whitcomb, a former Washington Huskies standout. “But you don’t want to miss something like this so you suck it up.”