In just about every dramatic political thriller that you ever see, there will be that one character -- you know the one. Generally either a hulking huge guy (think The Great Khali in "Get Smart") or the thoughtful woman being done wrong by the male establishment (think Joan Allen in the "Bourne" movies) who knows all along that what he or she is doing isn't really right.
In the movies this person continues to act on the side of evil (sometimes under duress) until a key moment arrives where the person must either kill the hero or change sides. 99% of the time, they change sides. 50% of the time they are killed and 25% of the time they go to jail anyway. This character accepts their fate because, well, they did something awful and continued to do it even after they realized it was wrong.
Now let's examine the traitorous Becky Hammon. Can't make the U.S. Olympic team, so she goes and plays for RUSSIA!!!!!!! This isn't Hakeem Olajuwon playing for the U.S. instead of Nigeria. When Hakeem was growing up in Lagos, the U.S. didn't have any nuclear missiles targeted about 500 miles away from his home. When Becky was growing up in South Dakota, Russia had thousands of long-range nuclear missiles targeted at Grand Forks, North Dakota. And they were ready and willing to use them. So, going to play for a country which was one itchy trigger finger away from obliterating you, your friends and family? Not the best idea.
Add to that the fact that she grew up in RAPID CITY!! Mount frigging Rushmore. So, everything that the USSR hated about the United States is exemplified by a giant monument right by your house!!!
But ultimately Becky decided that this did not matter. She had been done wrong by USA Basketball and she DESERVED (dammit!) to play in the Olympics. So she negotiated in her contract with her Russian team that if she continued to play for them they would help get her citizenship and get her on the Russian Olympic team.
Does this act sound familiar? From Anakin Skywalker in "Star Wars" to the tiger villain in "Kung Fu Panda," the movies are full of villains who felt they were not permitted their rightful place in the pecking order. Since they couldn't get what they wanted through regular channels, they would get it through joining with some evil force (The Emperor) or taking it themselves through violence (Kung Fu Panda guy). For goodness sake, this is one of the stories of "Lucifer"!
In any event. Becky Hammon threw away all ideas of patriotism and acted selfishly on her own behalf. She gave the finger to her homeland and went to play for Russia.
So, she is out on the court, playing to uphold the glory of a country that on the dawn of the Olympic Games decided to invade its neighbor (Georgia). A country who now obviously has a "head politician for life" who intends to re-live the days of the Cold War, fueling Russian expansion through charging enough for oil that SD ranchers will pay $4 a gallon for gasoline.
And today she played against Team USA in the final 4. She played like shit. The Russians lost by 15 in a game where if Hammon plays very well they win and if she plays average they have a chance to win.
There are a number of explanations:
1) she just isn't any good (i.e., as they say in rural NY and in rural SD -- she "sucks the big one") and that came out against the good American team
2) she had an off day
3) she realized what she was doing was horribly wrong and intentionally threw the game
4) she subconsciously was aware what she was doing was wrong and her mind and emotions would not allow her to play well
I leave it to you to decide, but I can tell you this -- when a WNBA all-star player shows up and shoots 17% from the floor, 0% from 3, 50% from the line, has an assist to turnover ratio of 1 to 2 and scores 3 points in 24 minutes of play.............ya gotta be asking yourself -- Is it possible that she looked in the mirror at that fancy Russian uniform and decided ------- she just couldn't do it?