CHICAGO – Over the last year, she’s had a few moments that will last a lifetime.

Returning to play for her hometown team last winter, winning a WNBA championship for the second time in her career in October, and then the birth of her son, Airr Larry, with wife Anna Petrakova in February.

Not a bad 15 months for Naperville native Candace Parker, who added to her already legendary career in the WNBA along with her family since returning to Chicago with the Sky. It’s added a second chapter to her professional basketball story that began with 13 seasons with the Sparks in Los Angeles and includes six All-Star appearances, two WNBA MVP awards along with a Defensive Player of the Year honor as well.

Entering her 15th WNBA season, Parker is on the second of a two-year deal with the Sky. Already a few at the team’s media day on Tuesday were asking about her thoughts on returning for this season and how long she planned to continue in the game.

For Parker, the key is staying in the moment and making sure she is doing her best for herself along with her family.

“I’ve always been on moment-to-moment,” said Parker at the Sky’s media day on Tuesday. “I want my heart to be in it, and I know how much energy and effort and how much sacrifice from a family standpoint, as well, that goes into playing and I just want to make sure that I’m mentally and physically ready for every season.”

Certainly, that was the case for Parker last season, who despite dealing with an ankle injury for part of the campaign played a huge part in the Sky’s success. In the regular season, the Sky were 15-8 with Parker in the lineup during the regular season as she averaged 13.3 points, 8.4 rebounds, and four assists per game.

In the playoffs, her stats were nearly identical, as she got 13.8 points, 8.4 rebounds, and 4.4 assists as the Sky went 8-2 en route to their first championship. If she can do the same for the Sky in 2022, the team has a chance to become the first team in 20 years to repeat as WNBA champions.

As she does so, Parker will not only stay loyal to her family and teammates but also to the sport itself.

“Because one thing I’ll say from the get-go, I’ll never cheat the game of basketball. I won’t cheat it,” said Parker. “It’s done so many positive things for me and has taken me so many places and relationships and memories and all of those things. So I will never cheat the game and so I think every year I have to ask myself if I’m willing to sacrifice for it.”