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" The Astoria, Queens native had just led the Lady Vols to their third straight national title and Holdsclaw seemed ready to assume the greatest-women’s-player-of-all-time mantle.

“I remember everybody being like, 'Is she gonna play her senior year of college?

Though she had everything a student athlete could want, she still wasn’t happy.

She says her college coach, Pat Summit, referred her to the sports psychologist, who diagnosed depression — something Holdsclaw compares with “putting a Band-Aid over a deep wound.” After graduating at 22, she joined the Washington Mystics as their first overall pick. “I remember driving in LA and thinking, ‘If I crash into this tree would anybody care?

“Those 15 seconds [when she attacked Lacy’s car] could have changed my life. It is something that I really wanted to work on, so I had to get healthy.

I had a forensic psychiatrist pull up all my records.” What the psychiatrist saw that others failed to see was that Holdsclaw was suffering from bipolar disorder.

I knew [the film] would give me a bigger platform to help people who do not have a voice, like my father.” It was her father’s diagnosis of full-blown schizophrenia, coupled with her mother’s alcoholism, that brought the 11-year-old Holdsclaw to live with her grandmother in a housing project in Queens.

Even then, her grandmother realized that something was terribly wrong.

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(She was unable to participate in Olympic games because of a stress fracture in her right foot.) Holdsclaw ranked in the top 10 in scoring and rebounding in her first six seasons. I kept a lot of feelings bottled up.” At the same time, Holdsclaw’s personal life was unraveling.She was called “the female Michael Jordan” — and if anyone was likely to make the WNBA wildly popular, it was Chamique Holdsclaw.But her biggest opponent wasn’t on the basketball court: It was her mind.So Holdsclaw hid her feelings as long as she could.As a rookie she was the Mystics’ second-best scorer (16.9 ppg) and top rebounder (7.9 rpg), as well as the Eastern Conference’s top vote-getter in the WNBA’s inaugural All-Star game.

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