2002 Record
9-23, .281
(8th in East)

Points Scored
2114 (9th overall, 4th in East)
Points Allowed
2266 (13th overall, 8th in East)
Scoring Differential
-4.8 (15th overall, 8th in East)

Offensive Efficiency
92.3 (16th overall, 8th in East)
Defensive Efficiency
98.9 (9th overall, 4th in East)
Possessions per 40 min.
71.0 (3rd overall, 1st in East)
What are these stats?

Award Winners & Honorees
None

2002 Draft Recap
Rd. 1 – 2, Swin Cash
Rd. 2 – 18, Lenae Williams
Rd. 2 – 20, Ayana Walker
Rd. 2 – 21, Jill Chapman
Rd. 2 – 22, Kathy Wambe
Rd. 3 – 47, Ericka Haney

Playoff History
One out of five years
Last Appearance
1999, lost in first round

2002 In Review: What Went Right?

The decision to replace head coach Greg Williams with Pistons legend Bill Laimbeer ten games into the season proved to be just what the doctor ordered as an 0-10 start turned into a 9-13 finish, including an 8-7 mark over the last 15 games of the year.

Coach Laimbeer
Upon his arrival, Laimbeer completely revamped Detroit’s offense, changing their focus from the perimeter to the paint, and defense, making them more aggressive. The affect on the scoreboard was emphatic adding three points per game to the team’s offense while decreasing the opposition’s scoring output by nearly five points.

The four-time NBA All-Star also made the first trade of his career sending Wendy Palmer to Orlando in exchange for Elaine Powell. Detroit went 8-7 following the trade.

Swin Cash
Drafting Swin Cash with the second overall pick in the 2002 WNBA Draft also proved to be an excellent decision. The Connecticut alumnae averaged 14.8 points, 6.8 rebounds, 2.7 assists and nearly a block a game as a rookie and finished third in WNBA Rookie of the Year balloting

What Went Wrong?

The Shock probably thought it would take some time for such a young squad to gel, especially opening the season with eight of ten games on the road, but they never could have imagined an 0-10 start. Many of the losses came in heartbreaking fashion as the team squandered four double-digit leads in its first eight games. Detroit eventually ended its losing skid at a WNBA-record 13 games with a 71-60 win over Sacramento.

The Wendy Palmer era came to an end in the Motor City, as the team traded her to Orlando in exchange for Elaine Powell midway through the season. Palmer left as the team’s second leading scorer and represented Detroit in the 2000 WNBA All-Star team. Despite her individual success, the team could manage only a 30-61 (.330) record during Palmer’s two-plus seasons in Detroit.

Dominique Canty, projected to start the season at the point for Detroit, broke her left hand midway through training camp, limiting her effectiveness throughout the season. The fourth-year guard averaged career lows in scoring (5.7) and rebounding (2.5) while hitting just 33.8 percent of her field goal attempts and averaging a career-high 2.00 turnovers.

Head Coach Bill Laimbeer

2002 Starting Line-up
G Elaine Powell
G Deanna Nolan
C Barbara Farris
F Swin Cash
F Astou Ndiaye-Diatta


Key 2002 Reserves
G Dominique Canty
G/F Edwina Brown

Looking Ahead To 2003

Key Questions

Installing entirely new offenses and defenses on the fly following a midseason coaching change is next to impossible, yet Laimbeer put his imprint on the Shock almost immediately last summer. What can Coach Laimbeer do for an encore with a full training camp?

The 2002 Shock were one of the youngest teams in WNBA history and with two lottery picks in the WNBA Draft, they could boast a similarly inexperienced roster again. Will that inexperience be an issue or will youth be served in Motown?