On September 4, 1999, the fledgling Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA) experienced a legendary moment.
Playing for New York Liberty, Teresa Weatherspoon of Pineland in Sabine County, Texas, sank a shot at half court with 2.4 seconds left on the clock to win (68-67) against the Houston Comets.
It was only the second year of the WNBA’s existence. The lasting image of the moment, now known as “The Shot,” was of Weatherspoon falling over on the floor smiling as her teammates mobbed her from the bench.
Dubbing the shot “One of the most amazing finishes in the WNBA,” the announcer’s comments vividly highlighted the action. “Liberty out of timeouts. They’ve got to go the length of the floor. Weatherspoon at the buzzer a three ... Ohhhhhhhh! She put it in! She put it in! And the Liberty win game two! What a finish! Unbelievable!”
Weatherspoon continued with the New York Liberty for seven seasons and played on for the Los Angeles Sparks until retiring in 2004.
She held the distinction of starting 220 games in her career and was named one of the league’s top 20 players in 2016 during the celebration of the WNBA’s twentieth anniversary. She later coached for Louisiana Tech University — where she had played college basketball.
Weatherspoon began coaching for the National Basketball Association’s New Orleans Pelicans in 2019 and now serves as an assistant coach for the team. At least 11 women now serve as head or assistant coaches in the NBA.
Weatherspoon is respected by the male athletes as a legend of the WNBA.
On August 28, Weatherspoon was inducted into the Texas Sports Hall of Fame in Waco. The Texas Sports Hall of Fame and Museum chronicles the heroes and legends of the Lone Star State sports at all levels, including high school standouts, Olympians and professionals.