The Atlanta Dream stands as strong contenders in the Eastern Conference as the season starts to wind down. With playoff games on the horizon, the Dream's run-and-gun offense aims to do some damage in the postseason.
Angel McCoughtry received Rookie of the Year honors in 2009 and is a top candidate in this year's Race to the MVP
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Atlanta's Angel McCoughtry sat with WNBA.com to discuss the Dream's hot start and the game plan heading into the second half.
WNBA.com: The Dream started the season off with a franchise-best 6-0 record. What's the feeling right now in Atlanta?
McCoughtry: Weíre happy with the way we started but we know itís too early. You canít get excited about that because itís not how you start, but how you finish. So weíre trying to just finish out the season strong. This is the time of the season where people start to get a little tired, a little banged up and people get hurt. You just have to stay together and keep fighting. Till the end, just keep fighting.
WNBA.com: Coming out of the break, whatís it going to take to remain a strong team heading into the postseason?
McCoughtry: Itís good because some of the girls got to relax and clear their heads and kind of refocus and heal some of the injuries they had. Hopefully weíll come back regrouped, refocused and our mind will be on point.
WNBA.com: On any given night if one of the Big Four on Atlanta Ė Iziane Castro Marques, Erika de Souza, Sancho Lyttle and yourself Ė is struggling, it seems like the rest of the team picks you up.
McCoughtry: Itís good. We need that. If we didnít have a good team then if you struggle, you just struggle. We have help on our team. If I struggle Izi steps up, if Izi struggles Erika steps up and if Erika struggles Sancho steps up. Thatís the great thing about our team. Anybody can hit 30 on any given night. You canít just focus on one person.
WNBA.com: Earlier in the season, both you and Coach Marynell Meadors said the one thing that sets you apart from other teams in the league is the up-and-down style of play. Back and forth. Is it catching up with the team, or is it easy to maintain that momentum throughout the season?
McCoughtry: You just donít think about that. You run and have fun and it makes the game easier. We donít think about getting tired. If weíre tired then everyone else is too.
WNBA.com: Whatís the chat in the locker room like?
McCoughtry: Loose. Keeping it loose. Boys. (laughs) We talk about a lot of stuff but weíre just staying focused. We want to win a WNBA Championship. Thatís our focus.