Live From Press Row
May 21, 2009

On the game:
I thought Nicole Powell got off to a great start and we just weren't ready to guard her. She finished perfect. I thought we competed hard. I thought defensively, after the first quarter, we did a good job. So I just think we'll work on our execution, keep trying to get better on defense and keep making decisions on personnel.

On Ashley Walker's play:
Ashley's just a ballplayer. Look at her and Camille (Little) - they don't really have a true position; they just play. At times, they're tough matchups for people. Ashley, she sort of has that knack to score. She gets her hands on a lot of things - whether it's a jump ball or a tip or a rebound or a loose ball, she's just very active. I'm glad she's on our side.

On Walker's rebounding:
Very good rebounders, those are natural things. You don't teach a lot of that. That's just a natural nose for the ball. You've heard that term a lot. People who for whatever reason, they anticipate well, they see what's going to happen before it happens and just have the ability to make plays.

On where he plans to play Walker:
I think we'll treat her and Camille very similar. We'll let them work at both positions and be very interchangeable. For one possession play the three and one possession play the four.

On La'Tangela Atkinson and A'Quonesia Franklin:
I thought they did well, competed very well. La'Tangela, she's athletic and active and Aqua, she did a good job getting the ball up the floor and getting us in our stuff. She's a competitor.

On making roster decisions:
I think we're getting close to knowing. We're going to sleep on it here and talk about it one more time in the morning and make a decision. In all honesty, it has absolutely nothing to do with the quality of people they are and the quality of players they are. It comes down to a short training camp. It's a numbers game and we've got to get some of our key players reps and get them ready for the regular season.

On her first WNBA game:
It was a lot of fun. There were jitters at first, but when the ball started bouncing, everything went well.

On how her versatility is helping her in the WNBA:
Oh, it definitely helps out a lot. I'm getting to be a lot more versatile, guard different players, be around different people, shoot the ball. I didn't really get a chance to get an open three tonight, but just little jumpshots off here and there. Brian told me to look for my shot, so I did.

On playing with Walker:
It worked really well. I think it's a good chance for us to see how it will be in the regular season and get comfortable with it. I think it will work out well for our team. I think it helps everybody. If we're both very versatile like that, we can switch places and it's easy on our defense. I think it will be a great thing once we get it under our belt and we're really comfortable with it.

On her first WNBA game after sitting out 2008:
It was great. These kind of games are the best games to play in. They don't really count for anything - you're out there trying to get better and bond with your teammates. We played well, I thought, given we only practiced four or five days, maybe. It was really good.

On the Storm's post players:
I'm really excited about our post game. (Walker) did really good. Ashley (Robinson) looks a lot better than she did when I was here the last season I played with her. She took big steps. Camille Little had a really good game. Kasha Terry, she did really well too.

On the game:
It was a good starting point to see where we’re at as a team. So I think it served that purpose.

On whether it was a problem playing so early in training camp:
No, not really, because now we know where we’re at. Everybody felt it and that makes work a little bit more constructive when they see the level. And that’s not even close to the level that it will be. That’s the first thing I said to Courtney (Paris) - "They’re pretty good, aren’t they?" And she said, "Yeah." And I said that’s not their starting lineup. They’re missing several Olympians, the MVP of the league … that’s how far we have to go. It was a good learning experience for us and we’ve got a long way to go and we’ll do everything we can to get there.

On her impressions of Paris' first game:
Without watching the tape, it’s hard to make detailed comments on any of them because I’m watching from the team perspective. But like I said, it’s a starting point. We’re small, and I don’t know if Courtney is used to being the smallest post player out there. I think she was smaller than all of the post players she was going against. We knew it’d be an adjustment for her to learn how to play at this level. It’s a huge jump, but she’s got all the tools, intangibles and skills and a lot of upside, so we’re extremely excited about her.

On having DeMya Walker healthy and on the floor:
Very grateful to have her out there. She’s worked so hard and been knocked down over and over again. Grueling rehabs, grueling surgeries, but she has persevered like no player I know. So for her to get through a game today is a big step for her. I’m just glad to have her back. She’s got a lot of rust, and rightfully so, but she will get it off. She is a determined young lady.

On her focus continuing the preseason:
We started in with our defense and spent probably 10 percent of our time on offense (in camp) and that was pretty clear tonight. But that’s not who we are. We’ve been trying to get better on our defense. Our defensive system takes a long time to get so we just have to keep grinding it out until the players who have been overseas get their habits back and the new players get an understanding of it. It’s very different than what they’re used to.

On the timetable for Kara Lawson and Rebekkah Brunson to return to the lineup:
We’re just trying to get them healthy. You never know how long it’s going to take, so we’re just monitoring them day by day and doing all we know to do. We still have two weeks until we play and the worst thing that we can do is rush them back right now and get them injured significantly. They’re on the right road right now and making progress and how quickly that’s going to happen, we just don’t know.

On her first WNBA game:
It was exciting, but at the same time I learned a lot about the WNBA in that you have to be ready. That’s what coach has been preaching in practice. But being out there and going against people made me realize that I really have to take this seriously and make the adjustments and get ready.

On the difference between the pro game and the college game:
Everybody is just a lot better. You’re not only worrying about yourself, but you’re worrying about the competition you’re going against. At the same time trying to learn the plays, learn the system, trying to do things right and trying not to get frustrated.

On the size of the Monarchs:
We are a small team. This is one of the first times at a higher level of basketball that I’m one of the tallest players on the team. Those are just adjustments you have to make and I feel like we have the type of players who can find a way to score through that. You know, we’ve had three days of practice and we’ve only put in two plays and we’ll get better. It’s just about working hard, being open to learn and open to fail to get to where you want to be.

On what areas the team needs work:
Our defense. Just denying the ball in those spots and just selling it out to it more. Tonight just let us know it’s going to be that much harder. I think we’ll learn from this.

2008 Postgame Quotes/Notes Archive