U.S. National Team players answer your emails
You Asked, They Answered
After receiving more than 2,000 letters from WNBA fans around the world, the U.S. National Team players arrived in New York ready to answer your questions.
Sue Bird, Seattle Storm
What is it going to be like playing in the olympics with your past
teammates from the past? Do you think that since you play with Lauren
Jackson day in and day out it is going to be to an advantage when ya'll
face her in the games?
-Katie (Houston, TX)
"I am definitely looking forward to playing with Swin and Diana.
I miss them so much both on the court and off the court. We are really
going to have a great time and I am glad I get to experience this with
them. As far as Lauren goes, I think it would be different if we played
the same position, but since we don't, the only thing I can do is whisper
some tips in Lisa Leslie's ear, but I'm not too sure Lauren would be happy
I think Sue Bird is sooper awesome and sooper hot!
-Cassy (San Juan, TX)
Sue, in Athens I know you and your team will be busy with basketball
but what else will you guys be doing in your spare time?
"I think it will be tough since I have heard that it will be tough
to get around in Greece, but I definitely want to check out other events,
support other events, whether it is track, soccer or swimming or whatever.
Whatever I can get my hands on ticketwise, I'm going to check it out.
And I definitely want to experience Greece. It is my first time there,
so I want to see all of the history and culture."
My question is for Sue Bird, i was wondering what were you more excited
about? Wheel of fortune in radio city or the USA vs WNBA game? All i know
is a can't wait for the game! good luck in athens!
-Shannon (Rohnert Park ,CA)
"This game, because Wheel of Fortune has probably been in Radio City
a million times, but this is the first time a televised game is taking
place in Radio City, and it's history. I am excited to be a part of that."
Swin Cash, Detroit Shock
How did you feel about the Olympics when you were growing up? When
did you wanted to be a basketball player? How old were you when you got
your shooting touch? Good Luck in the Olympics you guys! I'll be watching
and cheering you guys on!
-Your fan Cindy (Las Vegas, NV)
"I remember watching the Dream Team growing up, that was such a great
moment and one of my favorite Olympic memories. I always wanted to play
in the Olympics because those are the best athletes in the world. I played
a lot of different sports growing up and never focused on just one until
ninth grade, when I worked on my game and worked at it to get a scholarship."
Who is the most serious player on the US team and who is the jokester
on the team? Good Luck to all of you!!!!
-Terry (Atlanta, GA)
"I would say the most serious teammate I have is Ruth Riley. She
is very focused, but it's not like she doesn't have fun at all. I would
say that everybody collectively is a jokester."
I am a huge fan of yours. I have been watching you since your Freshmen
year at UCONN. How is it playing with fellow teammates Sue Bird and Diana
Taurasi on the Olympic team? This is a true testament to how great UCONN
-Emily (Bethany, CT)
"We know each other so well and have a good time together out there
on the court. I could be blind out there and know where they will be on
the floor. It will be great to get our chemistry back and I am really
looking forward to playing with them."
Are you surprised that w/ the talent The University of Tennesse Produces
in womens Basketball that you are the only LadyVol on either the USA Olympic
TEAM or The WNBA ALLSTAR TEAM?
"Not at all. Chamique got asked to be on the team but was unable
to participate. In the coming years, it will be cool to see if we can
keep the tradition alive and get more Tennessee players on the team. There
are plenty in the WNBA."
Ms. Catchings, what kind of feeling does it bring to you knowing that
you will have U.S.A. written across your chest? It has to be an honor
to be able to do something that you love and at the same time be one of
the best in the world.
"Definitely. For me to have "USA" across my chest means
a lot. To be able to go over there and represent my country, everyone
will be watching all over the world, it is a tremendous honor and we will
take it very seriously."
Hi,Yo. I would just like to wish you the best in the olympics and
I hope the USA team home another gold. How does it feel to be named to
the USA team again? Thanks alot for being my favorite role model.
-Tiff (Chicago, IL)
"It is truly a blessing. People in this league are fortunate, but
I am fortunate to be among such great players. It is truly an honor to
represent my country for a second time.
First of all Good Luck at Athens!!"
I want to know how all of u prepare mentally for the Olympics and
what kind of emotions go through your head when u realize u r representing
the united states in an olympic event? Thanks,
-Ashley (Clay Center, NE)
"Regardless of whether I am playing in the Olympics or playing for
the Monarchs, my mental state never changes. It stays the same. Get focused
and let the game come to me, not attack the game. With the U.S. team,
you make a sacrifice - what I do in Sacramento, I can't do here. It's
not about me, myself and I. It is about one team, one country."
San Antonio Silver Stars
Do you feel added pressure knowing that you are playing for and representing
an entire country?
I think there is added pressure because we take it among ourselves to
play hard. It is a great opportunity to be able to play with players of
such a great magnitude. Playing with them just brings your game to a whole
First of all good luck to the Olympic Team, go get em! I would like to
ask Pee Wee a question...is making the US Olympic Team one of your biggest
acheivements in your career? i know it would be mine. im rooting for you
guys, especailly you Pee Wee.
-Stephanie (San Antonio, TX)
Absolutely. It had been one of my goals that I had been dreaming about
for so long and to have a chance to win a gold medal is the greatest feeling.
I am so glad I will be able to do this for my family.
Lisa Leslie, Los Angeles
Hey,Lisa!I wish you the best in olympic,I believe the people in Athens
are ready for you!What are the things you looking forward to do in Athens?
fans are waiting to see you win the gold medal! YOU ARE GOING TO SHOCK
THE WORLD !!!
-Sonia (Los Angeles, CA)
"I am most looking forward to competing hard and having that gold
medal placed around my neck, The we will hear our national anthem played
I think Lisa Leslie is the greatest woman to ever play the game. I
love watching her. I even caught the show where she madeover her mom's
kitchen. I want to know how does she plan to compete against the new talent
the league's bringing in every year, Is it hard to stay #1 in a league
where everyone are great athletes? Good luck in Athens!
-La-Tina (Wilson, N.C.)
"I just plan on continuing to improve my game and focus on what improvements
I need to make. I don't focus on what the competition is doing. "
Ruth Riley, Detroit Shock
Do you think this game is going to be important? Why? And also do
you think this game can help you get ready for olympics?
-Richard (Gaithersberg, MD)
"It will be practice and games that will get us most prepared. We
just need to put the most into it to get the most out of it. The Radio
City Game will be important. Not only is it here in the States for the
fans, but it is also a farewell game for us."
Katie Smith, Minnesota
Katie, you are really lighting things up right now for my Lynx. Sure
wish I were still sitting in the 5th row! Is there anything about international
play, such as ball size or rim or court dimensions, that may require you
to adjust your shooting before and after bringing home the Gold?
"Obviously the ball is different. It will take a week or so to get
accustomed to that, but they moved the 3-point line back in the WNBA,
so that will help us a bit. It will just take repetition to get used to
it. Other than that, everything else is pretty simple"
Hey USA!! This question is about Katie Smith, I heard you had had
a "minor" injury. Is that improving day to day, and are you
ready to just shoot your oppenents "lights out"?
-Jackie (Pipe Creek, TX)
"It is improving every day and I am very anxious to get back on the
court. And I hope all of my jumpers go in."
Hey Katie! How serious is your injury and do you expect to be at 100%
by your first game in Athens? Good luck with Team USA and with the Lynx!!!
-Elise (Columbus, OH)
"I hope so, but it is really hard to say right now. Things are kind
of stagnant, but hopefully in a week or so, I will be ready to rock and
Dawn Staley, Charlotte
Dawn, This being your final Olympics, what do you expect to do in
Athens to live this experience to the fullest?
-Tye (Concord, N.H.)
"It's either gold or nothing. There is nothing other than gold that
I am expecting. That doesn't mean we don't work for it and that it's a
given. We will be challenged, but at the end of the day, it should be
us getting the gold medals."
Sheryl Swoopes, Houston
It seems everyone on the US team is getting banged up--first Delisha,
now Swoopes fighting an ankle injury, Katie Smith's knee, Taurasi's thigh....Are
you still going to be able to get it done in Athens or are you starting
to feel like the walking wounded?
-Kathy (Los Angeles, CA)
"I think it definitely hurts us, the fact that so many players are
a little bit beat up. Hopefully by the time we get to Athens and play,
we will all be ready for that competition. We have the talent, but when
it comes down to taking are of business, the twelve of us are definitely
excited and know we can get the job done."
How much will it help you to have Tina Thompson on the team this year?
How is the foot injury? will that limit your minutes of playing time?
I've been a fan of USA ball since Cooper's and Cheryl Miller days. I think
it's awesome to have both you and tina on the team best of luck on the
gold medal....and the rest of the wnba season.
-Cheryl (Ashland, WI)
"Tina is a great player. That is no secret to anybody. To have her
on the team this year won't only help me, but it will help the entire
USA Team to be that much better. This will more than likely be my last
Olympics, so I am excited about having the opportunity to go out with
a gold medal and with Tina and Coach Chancellor."
Diana Taurasi, Phoenix
Hey, Diana Taurasi . I think you are good, but I bet my high school
team (3 times in a row state champs) could blow the Phoenix Mercury out.
I'll guard you because you are really cute and I like you. But remember,
BURKEMAR HIGH SCHOOL PATRIOTS: 3-TIME CHAMPS
-Jay Jay (Atlanta, GA)
"We probably couldn't beat your team. They seem like they are really
good. We'd probably get killed."
Diana, do you think your long season could've played a part in you
injuring your thigh? and will you be full strength, back to the dee we
know and love by the time the olympics start?
-Janell (Houston, TX)
"No, it was a hip, just a freak accident when I got into the lane
and collided with Tamika Catchings, one of my Olympic teammates. She went
for the ball and kind of punched me in the hip instead. It is getting
better day by day."
Dear Diana Taurasi, What is it like being in the Olympics as a rookie?
Do you feel like you have to dominate in order for your team to bring
home the Gold?
-Joey (Blairstown, NJ)
"I get treated like a rookie, but the great veterans here pretty
much treat everyone the same. It is definitely exciting."
Were you a bit overwhelmed when you first came into the league or
did you just take it all in stride? Also congrats on the two espys you
-Katie (Carmel, ME)
"I took it all in stride. Being at UConn totally got me prepared.
Everything has been step-by-step and I have been surrounded by some great
people who have made everything easier."
Tina Thompson, Houston
Do you honestly think that anyone in the world can stop you?
-Bec (Grundy, VA)
"Well you know, mentally, that is the way we approach the games. You have to be confident. History speaks for itself, we’ve won the last two gold medals. The women who won those two medals had the commitment and the desire to be the best in the world and this team is attempting to do the very same thing. We have the best players in the world on this team, the talent level is so high on this team."
Check back tomorrow for the WNBA All-Star's responses to