Players Make Personal Improvements
We asked a bunch of WNBA players what skills they have been working on during the offseason and what sorts of improvements they've been trying to make in their game. We received a variety of answers. Here are the best:
|Tamika Catchings, Indiana
"Shooting. One of the things about my game that people really criticized last year was my shooting percentage. It's one of the things I've really focused on in the offseason. I continue to work on everything else, of course, but I've really focused on shooting the ball."
|Temeka Johnson, Los Angeles Sparks
"I would like to improve my consistency beyond the 3-point line. I want my teammates to know that when I take the shot that I am shooting with confidence and that I know I can hit it. I was drafted into this league for my ability to get my teammates involved and I want to continue to improve on those skills as well."
|Katie Smith, Detroit Shock
"The thing I still need to improve on is setting an on-ball pick: making reads off it, seeing how your opponent plays you, trying to get the ball to the right teammate. I still need to work on calling plays and understanding the flow of the game, understanding my teammates and knowing when I should attack and be aggressive."
|Tina Thompson, Houston Comets
"Every offseason I try to add something new to my game, and this offseason I've focused more on facing up and doing things off the dribble."
|Betty Lennox, Seattle
"I am always improving on my game. Becoming stronger in every area. Each year, more and more talent comes in and I have to make sure that I am up to speed with them. Working on my quickness, consistency, and being strong. Anyone on the team can tell you that they have to run me out of the gym because they feel I spend too much time in there."
|Nykesha Sales, Connecticut Sun
"Well it's all angles... there's nothing that I can't get better at. The 3-point shot can get a lot better, ballhandling, continuing the dribble off a screen, little things like that... but most of all, if I work on my 3-pointer I can be a better player."
|Sheryl Swoopes, Houston Comets
"I always want to work on every aspect of my game. This year, I want to work on being really confident in my 3-point shot."
|Bernice Mosby, Washington Mystics
"I think one of the tougher things will be adjusting to the more physical play. It will be hard to hold my position when the players are bigger and taller. I'll also have to read the defense and think more like a basketball player, instead of just going out and playing. But I also need to stay confident that I can go out there and play with anybody."
|Armintie Price, Chicago
"I need to work on my outside game… my range. My confidence level (was) sky high (after the NCAA) Tournament, but so much of my offense is from driving to the basket. I'd rather take a lay-up than a jumper. But the Tournament has given me a lot of confidence. And that won't go away, but it would still help to take it up to the next level."
|Ruth Riley, San Antonio Silver Stars
"I think being more consistent as a shooter, and also working on taking it off the dribble a little bit more."
|Swin Cash, Detroit Shock
"I am always working to improve my fundamentals, the basics of the game. Coming off of that knee injury, I continue to work on ball-handling, my shooting and overall movement away from the ball."
|Sherill Baker, New York Liberty
"I'm working on improving my 3-point shot and being better at finishing my layups."
|Ivory Latta, Detroit Shock
"Some of the things I've done in college, I definitely won't be able to do in the WNBA. I'll have a tougher time taking the ball inside, so that will definitely be an adjustment. I guess I'll have to work on my outside jump shot a lot."
Washington Mystics (left)
"I am working on ball handling and at being aggressive for 40 minutes."
|Candice Dupree, Chicago Sky
"I've been working on a lot of guard-oriented stuff this offseason, as far as shooting 3's and putting the ball on the floor to get to the basket."
|Cheryl Ford, Detroit Shock
"I think I'm just getting better. I went overseas the past couple of offseasons and I think I matured as a player and as a person. I had a lot of 'me time' to just think and work on my game, and that's what I did."
|Kendra Wecker, San Antonio Silver Stars
"Going overseas this past season has really given me more confidence and should really help me. I have been working on my perimeter game, working to refine my skills a little bit. Since coming into the league, I've been dubbed a shooter even though that was not really my role in college. I didn't play on the perimeter a whole lot. I played in the high post area, in the 15- to 17-foot range, but my game has changed a little bit. I'm working to get more comfortable with that."
|Noelle Quinn, Minnesota Lynx
"I have a lot to work on: ball-handling, defense, consistency with my shot. There's still a lot I have to focus on."