Sylvia Fowles’ time in the WNBA is almost over, but it’s time to celebrate her new start.

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How are you, family? Once again, Sykes is here to bring you another Layup Line. Today is a day to honor Sylvia Fowles.

The star player for the Minnesota Lynx told us that she is leaving the WNBA at the end of this season. She has been a star in the league for 15 years. That happened back in July, and my, how time flies! We’re here already.

She might play her last home game with the Lynx on Friday. All of the articles about how smart she is and all of the tweets about how kind and real she is are, as they should, rising to the top. Fowles deserves so much more than the flowers she’s finally getting.

It’s hard to say that a league MVP has somehow stayed under the radar during her career, but Fowles seems to have done just that. She has always been one of the best players in the WNBA, from the time she was a second-year All-Star in Chicago to all the times she went to the WNBA Finals with Maya Moore in Minnesota.

Fowles always goes to work, takes charge, and does what she has to do. That’s why she has more rebounds than anyone else in WNBA history. It’s why she’s been an All-Star eight times, been the Finals MVP twice, and won four gold medals at the Olympics. You understand, she’s great.

But she won’t say a word about it, especially when it comes to basketball.

Basketball is not her main interest. Fowles told ESPN’s Kevin Van Valkenburg about it not long ago. “Basketball is not my life. “That’s just what I do.” She loves the game and everything it has given her, but it doesn’t make her who she is. She is serious.

Minnesota Lynx Jersey

She has already planned out what she will do when she retires. She works in a cemetery. She knits things like baskets and beanie hats for fun. She even made some to give to her teammates and coaches when she finally leaves. She takes care of plants and loves to drink tea. She is such a nice person that no one would dare say anything bad about her. That’s Sylvia Fowles, and this is the beginning of her new life.

I don’t know how many more episodes of Big Syl we’ll get. It could be a little, but if the Lynx keep their playoff spot at 7, it could be a lot.

No matter what, it’s been a pleasure to see her grow as an artist. We’ll miss her. But she’s going to have the best time ever.

Cheers to that

The Tip-Off

Here are some NBA-related stories from the USA TODAY Sports network.

When LeBron James retires, the Miami Heat’s arena is going to look pretty strange. Bill Russell’s number 6 has been taken off the rosters of all teams in the league.

But, a pretty good 6 played in that arena ten years ago. LeBron James might be the best player who has ever been on the Miami Heat. And one day, his jersey will be taken out of circulation. This also means that the building will have two different numbers 6. Today, Bryan Kalbrosky, a friend of mine, wrote about it.

One to Watch

It’s going to be entertaining.

(All odds via Tipico.)

Seattle Storm (-1.5, +102) vs. Minnesota Lynx (+1.5), Over/Under 163.5, 9 PM ET

Fowles and Sue Bird are both legendary players, and this match is also a battle for a spot in the playoffs. With four teams tied for the seventh seed, the Lynx have a lot to lose. It’s also the last home game for Big Syl, at least for the regular season. So I’m taking Minny +1.5.

Shootaround

Here’s a look at the last NBA players to ever wear the No. 6 jersey.

Cole Huff already knows the top 30 over/under bets for next season. He’s all over it.

It doesn’t seem likely that Kevin Durant would join the 76ers, but Philly fans can dream.

Why does Oklahoma City still have so many picks? Sheesh.

Family, that’s it! Have a great weekend. Also, tell us what you think of this new flow. Like it? Enjoy it? Not a fan? Quiet down.

Government workers from the United States in Tijuana have been told to stay inside as violence spreads across Baja California.

Gannett could get paid by Tipico for sending people to betting services. Tipico has no control over the newsrooms or news coverage, and these kinds of income are not linked to or depend on them in any way. The rules can be found at Tipico.com. 21+ only. Gambling problem? Call 1-800-GAMBLER in New Jersey, 1-800-522-4700 in Colorado, or 1-800-BETS-OFF in other states (IA).

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