Happy Birthday to Basketball Hall of Famer, Sheryl Swoopes!

by Shine My Crown Staff
Voiced by Amazon Polly

Sheryl Swoopes has relished many firsts throughout her illustrious basketball career.

Swoopes is not only the first woman to ever be drafted into the WNBA, but she is also the first female basketball player ever to have a Nike shoe named after her. Swoopes is also a three-time WNBA MVP and was named one of the league’s Top 15 Players of All Time at the 2011 WNBA All-Star Game.

Today she turns 49.

Now in 2020, the WNBA is a cornerstone of the sport, but if it weren’t talent and tenacity of Swoopes and her peers paving the way, the WNBA might not be the sports powerhouse that it is today.


Nike released the iconic Air Swoopes dropped in 1995 before she and Team USA struck gold at the Atlanta Games in 1996. Swoopes is a three-time Olympic gold medalist (1996, 2000, 2004). In 2017, she was inducted into the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame.


In an interview with ESPN+’s SneakerCenter in October 2019, she remained humble about her accomplishment.

I mean, how many of us can claim to have a Nike shoe named after us?

“I feel like God put me in the right place at the right time. I can’t even sit here and tell you that I had a dream growing up to have my own shoe someday. And to be the first female. I know it’s real, but it doesn’t seem real,” she said graciously. “It’s just such an amazing feeling to sit back today and watch the growth of the game. And I think of how many of the [current] WNBA players that deserve a shoe.”


Swoopes is without a shadow of a doubt, a trailblazer and a history maker.

Shine My Crown would like to wish Sheryl Swoopes a very happy birthday!

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