Fresh off the first WNBA title in franchise history and three star players
in Lauren Jackson, Sue Bird and Betty Lennox wrapped up to long-term deals, the
Seattle Storm suffered several key losses to the starting lineup and the regular
rotation. Free agency will replace some of those figures, and according to Storm
head coach Anne Donovan, the 2005 WNBA Draft could fill the rest of those needs.
Q. How have you been preparing for the upcoming WNBA Draft?
coaching staff watches game tapes, travels to scout live games and speaks with
college coaches to ascertain information helpful in the evaluation process."
When do you start getting prepared for the draft?
"We are continually
in the draft preparation mode. Much of our off season is spent on roster development,
through college, free agent and international evaluations."
there specific areas or holes/weaknesses are you looking to bolster with your
"We have lost a lot of experience from our Championship Team
and so we are have many needs this season. Obviously, we will not be reaplacing
experience lost, but we are hoping for a young player, possibly in the post, to
help bolster our depth."
Q. What are the most important traits you
look for in prospects?
Seattle has the twelfth overall pick on April 16.
"Mentality is so important, is this kid tough
enough? She must be a confident player, hungry to improve her game and eager to
test herself against the best players in the world. Strength, or the potential
and work habits to develop strength. Can the player withstand the physicality
of the WNBA, a very important trait to becoming a success in the WNBA. These traits
are as important to us in the evaluation process as the actual skills of the players."
What players that you have seen have impressed you the most so far?
Wecker, Tan White, Janel McCarville."
Q. With your pick, are you
targeting a specific player, a position, or will you take the best available players?
"We will likely draft the best players available to us with the #12 pick."
What prospects do you feel can or will make an immediate impact in the league
"I believe Kendra Wecker is a special talent who has
the tough mentality, strength, work ethic, and versatility to make an immediate
contribution to her team. Tan White is an explosive talent, and Janel McCarville
is a post who will also make impact with her team early in her WNBA career. Where
these players go will determine starter vs sub, but I believe all three of these
players have the possibility of starting."
Q. How important is the
Tournament in helping you make last minute decisions? How closely does a player's
performance in the NCAA Tournament affect her draft status?
Tournament gives us the opportunity to evaluate a player that much further, factoring
in added incentive and/or pressure. Competing out of conference against very skilled
teams is a good addition to the scouting process."
Q. How does this
year's Draft compare to previous ones?
"Our draft in 2004 was such
a strong one, this year is much shallower."
Q. Are you looking to
trade or considering trading picks/players?
"We are finally getting
resolution on our free agents from last season. At this time I don't foresee any
trades for the Storm."
Q. Does foreign scouting consume a lot of
your time in the offseason?
"Yes, we were very involved in the international
players this offseason."
Q. With free agency as an option now, are
you more likely to fill needs through the Draft, free agency, or trades?
goal is to field the most competitive team possible and each season our needs
will change, the status of free agents will change and the strength of the draft
will fluctuate. I think the answer to that question will change year by year."