VP OF PLAYER PERSONNEL GIVES HER SCOUTING REPORT OF THE FIRST TWO ROUNDS
By Reneé Brown
I think that this great class brings a lot of athleticism, and it shows what to expect in the future. Each class is getting better and better and better. Because women are realizing that there is another level that they can aspire to and they want to join what I consider to be the best players in the world. I am seeing it more and more and more every year -- the talent is getting better, and the passion that they bring to the game. They are excited about the idea to play in the WNBA and that is exciting to me as an administrator of the league. It excites me to see the excitement and passion that they show at our pre-draft camp. I think this class is going to make the WNBA more competitive, and it is only going to get better.
One of the best young talents I have ever seen. She is coming in as rookie but really is a veteran in the game. She has been playing with her national team since she was 14. She is bringing a lot of experience to Seattle. Jackson is very versatile -- gets out and runs like a gazelle. She is a complete package and a competitor who understands the game very well. It is almost like she was born to play the game of basketball.
I think Kelly is going to bring a tremendous work ethic to Charlotte. She has a lot of knowledge because she has been trained really well by Andy Landers at Georgia. She is very fortunate as a rookie guard because she is learning from one of the best point guards in the world in Dawn Staley. If Kelly walks in there with that in mind, she is going to be very fortunate. Kelly can shoot the three and pushes the ball up court extremely well. One thing I found to be interesting about Kelly is what her college coach said about her, he said that "she has a game clock in her head." She knows what can be done in five seconds, she knows what can be done in 10 seconds, she knows how far to go and when to get the shot off. She is what I call a heady guard -- she understands the game and timeline.
Tamika is a great athlete and special person, and what a great combination that is. She is very versatile and has played the small forward and mastered it. She started off playing the power forward, which is an inside game, and was very fortunate that coach Pat Summit knew that at the next level, she needed to be on the perimeter and put her on the perimeter. She just has a great understanding of the game. She can push the ball up the court -- the type of forward that can actually start a fast break, she can get the rebound, push the ball up the court and make the decision like a guard. Quick hands and feet and has a good sense for the game. She's got such a strong work ethic and I think Indiana is very fortunate to get Tamika. I don't know how much she will play this year due to her knee injury, but I can tell you she is very excited about going to Indiana and playing for Nell Fortner. Nell knows her game -- she's probably been watching Tamika, like I have, since she was in the eighth grade.
Jackie is a self-made hard worker who plays with a passion for the game. She is fast with the ball, can get the rebound, push the ball up the court, shoot the three and is an excellent pull-up jump shooter. She also reads the defense well.
Ruth is an excellent low block player who has really worked hard to perfect low post moves. She's able to read what the defense gives her and counter that. She is a Pete Newell-type of player (Pete used to tech the big man camp for NBA players and he took them through a series of drills and low post moves) and has all of those Pete Newell low-post moves down. Ruth has a nice touch on the ball -- great hands. She can catch the ball no matter where it is. She has excellent foot work.
6. Deanna Nolan, Detroit
Svet is another very versatile athlete. She comes from a great program like UConn and has had the opportunity to play with the Russian National Team. Even though she is a rookie, she has a lot of experience. She's got a variety of offensive weapons -- the three-point shot, the mid-range game and the ability to penetrate and score.
Marie is an excellent one-on-one player who has the ability to break down the defense and is a tremendous leaper. When she jumps, she just keeps rising and rising and you wonder when she is coming down. She has a quick first step to the basket, quick hands, quick feet.
Coco can shoot the three, put the ball on the ground and pull up her shot. She runs the court really well, makes good decisions with the ball and is a competitor.
Katie refuses to lose. She is that type of player that is a winner. She has a will to win and will do whatever it takes. If she needs to score, she will score. If she needs to rebound, she will rebound. She will recognize who is open and is able to deliver. She makes people around her look better. Katie's will to win is the key for her.
11. Penny Taylor, Cleveland
LaQuanda is very versatile. She is a leaper and can jump out of the gym. She is the type of player that looks to score a lot of points in the low block, looking for layups. She has a very consistent 15-16 foot range and is an excellent rebounder.
13. Kristen Veal, Phoenix
14. Kelly Schumacher, Indiana
Amanda is a diamond in the rough. I think she is a great athlete. She did a tremendous job at Missouri and has so much talent that has not yet been tapped. I consider her to be my smaller and younger Yolanda Griffith. Amanda had the ability at the college level to take over games and is very fortunate that she gets to go to a four-time championship team. She will be surrounded by great athletes that are winners, and her game will only get better. I think the key to Amanda is to recognize how good she could be. I don't think she knows she's good yet. She has really been blessed with a gift she needs to recognize and be assertive, and use the tools that have been given to her.
Camille is very athletic and mobile inside, meaning she's very versatile in the paint. She can post you up, face up from the high post, put a shot down if necessary. She reboundsand runs the court very well. The key to Camille is she has a great nose for the ball -- she can get into position to rebound the ball with a quick put back.
Semeka is a scorer and defender. Coach Lin Dunn is going to look for her to really get down and play some strong defense, and score. She does need to work on her outside range, but she has the ability to finish in traffic.
Tammy will bring more help on the side, whether it be in rebounding or as a post player.
Niele is another point guard for Indiana who is possibly going to be Rita Williams' backup. Niele is just coming off of an NCAA Championship and brings a lot of experience and knowledge for the game. She is a great addition to the Fever's program.
20. Jenny Mowe, Portland
She is a versatile player who can play the one and the two. If the Lynx needed her to come in and back up guard Betty Lennox or forward Katie Smith, she brings the versatility.
22. Jae Kingi, Detroit
Erin is a great fit for the Lynx because of coach Brian Agler's offense. She is an extremely versatile guard/forward. She has the ability to play the 1, 2, 3 or 4.
24. Michaela Pavilocova, Utah
Tamara is very mobile in size. She can score in the low block, can face up from 15-foot range and is a strong rebounder.
26. Brooke Wyckoff, Orlando
Jaynetta is extremely athletic. She will bring another level of athleticism to the game. She has the ability to penetrate and run the floor.
Janell is an inside scorer and great rebounder. I think the Lynx will be looking to score more on the inside and she'll help in that respect.
29. Ilona Korstine, Phoenix
30. Jackie Moore, Sacramento
Tynesha can play the one and push the ball up court, or the two, and get out and run with them.
Nicole is the type of player that will come in as a role player and spot check their starters. But when she is in the game, it is like they never made a substitution. She has great knowledge of the game. What I think she brings is a competitive spirit -- she has a will to win.