When Anna DeForge's phone rang on Monday, she did not know what to expect. The Indiana Fever had the day off after defeating the Washington Mystics at home on Sunday night and getting a call from Fever General Manager Kelly Krauskopf and PR Director Kevin Messenger made her a little nervous.
There was no need to worry. The call was relaying good news as the veteran guard was informed that she had been selected by the fans as a starter in the 2007 All-Star Game.
WNBA.com's Brian Martin spoke with DeForge to discuss her selection to the Eastern Conference All-Star Team and what she is looking forward to most about All-Star weekend.
Q. What was your initial reaction when you heard you were voted as a starter in the All-Star game?
DeForge: "Honestly, I was very, very shocked, but pleasantly surprised. Iím just very thankful to all of the fans who took the time to go out and vote and Iíll do my best to represent them."
"They put me on speakerphone and I was like 'Okay, Kelly you never really call me so whatís the deal, did you trade me?'
"They actually told me I was voted by the fans to start in the All-Star game. I didnít believe them for like five minutes, I just thought it was some joke."
Q. Was making the All-Star Team a goal of yours?
DeForge: "Actually, no. Individual things, All-Star teams and awards are not really goals of mine. I want to be the best player that I can be obviously and keep learning stuff, keep getting better every year. But I also want to the best I can be for the team Iím on and that happens to be the Fever. For me itís never about personal stuff, Iím really just looking forward to this team continuing to do what we do and win. Our goal is a championship and I think thatís our focus as a team and even as a player for me, the goal here is a championship."
Q. Have you attended the All-Star Games in the past?
DeForge: "I was an All-Star in 2004 when they picked the All-Star Team and then we played the Olympic team. It was the WNBA All-Stars vs. Team USA. It was a similar setup to other All-Star weekends, they had us everywhere out and about. The only difference was the game, we werenít at the Garden, we were at Radio City."
Q. What was it like to play a basketball game at Radio City Music Hall?
DeForge: "It was really different; it was a unique experience because the court hardly fit in there. Obviously there wasnít a lot of close seating for fans, but it was different setup. Every fan in there probably had a great seat because it wasnít as big as a regular arena."
Q. What are you looking forward to most at this year's All-Star Game?
DeForge: "Itís a big shock that Iím even going to be attending. I'll just have to change my mindset. I had a vacation with my family planned. Iím just looking forward to going to D.C. and enjoying the time there and all of the activities. This is an event for the fans. Itís going to be a really relaxed weekend. For the players, weíre going to have fun with it."
Q. What is your favorite thing about Washington D.C.? Is there any place
you HAVE to go? Any favorite restaurants or tourist spots?
DeForge: "I just think that D.C. is such a pretty city with all of the buildings, itís so green. I like the Georgetown area a lot. I try to get down there whenever Iím there."
Q. The Fever have been one of the best teams in the East. What will it take
to maintain that pace in the second half of the season?
DeForge: "I think we need to stay focused. We have to stay focused every game, not get ahead of ourselves and we just have to get better every game. We have to be the best team we can possibly be at the end of the year. We want to have the best record in the East, we want to have the best record in the WNBA and then go from there and carry all of that over to getting past Detroit and winning a championship."
Q. It will be you and Fever teammate Tamika Catchings, and then the rest
of the All-Star starting lineup comes from Detroit. Is it going to be a little
odd to play with those players that you are battling in the East during the
DeForge: "I donít think so because itís just a relaxed weekend. Itís not where you have to have your competitive face on. Of course you want to win the game. It will be fun to play with all of the other talent in the league that the fans wanted there."
Indiana Fever guard Anna DeForge
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