Fever Moves Up to No. 2 Pick in 2005 Draft
INDIANAPOLIS – The Indiana Fever improved its standing in the WNBA Draft for second straight year during Wednesday night’s WNBA Draft Lottery, earning the No. 2 pick in next April’s selection of the top college and amateur players. Indiana will follow the Charlotte Sting in next spring’s draft order, followed by the Phoenix Mercury, San Antonio Silver Stars and Houston Comets.
Indiana, 15-19 in 2004, entered the lottery with the No. 3 pick and third-best draft standing based on last summer’s regular season records, and was one of three teams to improve its draft standing. San Antonio and Houston – teams with the WNBA’s worst regular season records – fell to No. 4 and No. 5, respectively, in the 2005 WNBA Draft.
The Fever, 16-18 in 2003, entered the lottery with the No. 5 pick and the fifth-best chance to draw the coveted first pick of the upcoming draft and earned the No. 3 selection. Indiana traded that pick to Charlotte, in exchange for 2004 WNBA Co-Most Improved Player Kelly Miller in addition to the Sting’s No. 9 first-round selection.
“I’m excited!,” exclaimed Fever Chief Operating Officer and General Manager Kelly Krauskopf. “We have a chance to build our team with a solid pick and get somebody who can help us right away. This year’s draft is going to be dictated more by teams’ needs. There is no clear No. 1 pick like Diana Tarausi was a year ago. Anytime you move up in a draft, you feel like luck is on your side.”
The Draft Lottery was conducted by WNBA officials and representatives from the accounting firm of Ernst & Young at the NBA Entertainment studios in Secaucus, N.J. and included the five teams that did not qualify for the 2004 WNBA Playoffs. The lottery is modeled after the lottery used in the NBA and is weighted to favor the teams with the poorer records. The lottery established the order of selection for the first round of the draft, with the order of selection for the second and third rounds based on teams’ regular-season finishes in 2004.
The top five picks for the 2005 WNBA Draft:
Team (2004 record)
1. Charlotte (16-18)
2. INDIANA (15-19) 3. Phoenix (17-17)
4. San Antonio (9-25)
5. Houston (13-21)