Postgame Quotes: Storm 61, L.A. 60 (Preseason)
STORM HEAD COACH BRIAN AGLER:
On the game:
Well, I thought we made some improvements since Friday and that's sort of what we were looking for. Tanisha Wright makes a big difference just offensively and defensively. I mean, it's an exhibition game. The real season starts this upcoming week. L.A. will turn right around and come back up here for Friday night.
On putting together a final roster:
We are going to have to make some roster decisions. We have to get down to 11 people and that includes Lauren (Jackson). We'll play with 10 players on Friday night so we're going to have to make some decisions.
On Shekinna Stricklen's performance:
I thought she came and played real well. She did some good things. She's a rookie so she's just going to keep getting better. She's going to learn a lot this year.
I thought she played really well tonight. I also remember things - just basic block out situations - she's got to really pay attention to detail.
On the focus over the last week of training camp:
I think there's two things we need to focus on. One is getting better as a team, acclimating Ann Wauters and getting Sue (Bird) back in the mix and acclimating Ewa (Kobryn) more. Then, preparing for LA. I don't think either team prepared a whole lot in regard to their opponent tonight but I think they'll pay a lot more attention to that going into Friday.
STORM FORWARD SHEKINNA STRICKLEN:
On making her debut:
I was nervous. I'm always nervous but it goes away. I'm having fun with my teammates. All the nervousness went away. I'm able to play and relax.
On her hot shooting:
It wasn't me - I'd say it was my teammates. They were driving in all day and we would be wide open and I was able to knock down the shots.
On forcing a jump ball in the closing seconds:
It was just a hustle play. Coach always stays on us about who's going to dive for the ball, who's going to take charges - just hustle plays. You have to really get on the floor.
On scoring 15 points in her debut:
It feels good. Shots were going in, teammates were getting open. It just felt good, I'm excited.
On the adjustment to the WNBA game:
It's a lot more physical. You have to be a lot stronger. I could tell at the end there were a lot more turnovers - you just have to be stronger with the ball. You have to battle every possession.
On whether she prefers a specific position:
Oh, no, it felt good. We've been moving a lot at practice and they've also been pushing me a lot in practice – getting a lot of reps. I felt pretty good today.
STORM GUARD TANISHA WRIGHT:
On playing her first game of the season:
It's a different speed of the game so I have to get my wind back up. Get my legs up under me. That's pretty much it but it felt pretty natural and normal. Like I said, getting my legs and my wind back under me. On running the offense with just one practice:
We had one practice and its pretty much the same stuff. It's just different people and some of these people, I mean, Tina (Thompson) and I have played against each other for years so I know what her strengths are. Strick (Stricklen) - it was nice to get to practice with her and see what she does well. Brian called most of the stuff; my mind wasn't as quick. But it was nice, it was nice to see how things are shaking up. On Stricklen:
She's very gifted offensively. Her repertoire of things she does well - not sure how to describe that but she's very gifted offensively. She'll take the ball, pick-and-roll, very gifted. On playing with Thompson:
When you play against a player like that for years, you see the damage she does to you, it's always nice when you have players like that on your side. Looking forward to that and looking forward to implementing Ann (Wauters) into the system, to see where we will really be at come Friday when we play them again.
On the game:
I'm glad the preseason is over. We needed every opportunity that we've had, but I think we're ready to start preparation for the season. Training camp is shut down now and it's time to really start the preparation, the chemistry, trying to get all of the pieces in place and polish them up.
On positives from the game:
I thought we had a good fighting spirit. We were down a few times and we were resilient and found ways to get back in it. I loved that. We weren't very aggressive offensively and it showed by not getting to the foul line until the fourth quarter.
On areas for improvement:
Better balance in our offense and better execution. Seattle does a very good job defensively. They're physical and stingy. We've got to do a better job when we're playing physical teams like that to execute our offense.
On developing team chemistry:
When you get to the 11, they can all look at each other and say that they're in this for the long haul. There's a positive emotion. You always hate to see teammates leave, but at the same time you want to know who are you in the trenches with. I think they are ready to get to that moment. What we do from there remains to be seen. That's the beauty of the season.
On the game:
It was obviously different from when we played China and Japan, but overall it was a good start to understanding each other's games. We didn't start off like we wanted to and it came down to just one point. We're starting to understand each other and have a lot of things to work on together and as individual players. I'm excited for the season.
On adjusting to the pro game:
It's a lot of fun. My team is competitive, they're welcoming and everyone helps you out, coaches you, and gets you to understand what is necessary for your role. I'm having a lot of fun and am really ready to start the season.
On returning to Seattle Friday for Opening Night:
It's weird. But it's better that we get a good taste of them then come back. And we'll see them again at home.