Q & A: Erlana Larkins
May 24, 2012
One of Indiana’s newest additions, free agent Erlana Larkins is excited to be back in the WNBA after being waived by New York in 2010 and Phoenix in 2011. Drafted 14th overall in 2008 by the Liberty, Larkins is known for her ability to pull down rebounds. Before leaving for Chicago for game two of Indiana’s season, Larkins talked to FeverBasketball.com’s Becca Bornhorst about her love for the game.
FeverBasketball.com: How does it feel to be back in the league after not making it the past two seasons?
Erlana Larkins: “It feels different. I haven’t been here so a lot of things have changed. The rules slightly change year to year, but it feels good to be able to play in front of my friends and family in America.”
FB: What did you have to do in the winter season while playing overseas to get yourself back into the league?
EL: “I had to continue to work on my game. I think [making the Fever team] was more about opportunity than anything. I just want to thank the Fever for the opportunity.”
FB: Was there anything specific in your game that you worked on or was Indiana just the right fit at the right time?
EL: “I talked to Coach Dunn and Kelly [Krauskopf] beforehand and they talked about how they needed somebody who could rebound, and I think it was the perfect fit. I had a couple of other looks but I think Indiana was the most enthused and the most serious about me.”
FB: Coach Dunn has talked about your ability to rebound as being one of your key strengths. What is your secret when it comes to snatching down boards?
EL: “I think I just have a knack for finding the ball. By that I mean when the ball goes up, just being able to tell when and where it’s about to come off the basket and being at the right place at the right time.”
FB: You played with Shavonte Zellous in Turkey this past winter and with Jessica Davenport in New York in ‘08. Did those relationships on and off the court help in making your transition to Indiana easier?
EL: “It does help knowing somebody beforehand that you can come in and play with. Catch [Tamika Catchings] and Tammy [Sutton-Brown] have played overseas in Turkey as well. We weren’t all on the same team but we were all there at the same time. It was nice coming to Indiana and already having a handful of people that I knew and having people who could help teach me the system here.”
FB: Since you are just one of three newcomers this year, what is something about you that Fever fans don’t know?
EL: “I’m not too much of an exciting person, but I do have about 60 tattoos, and for the most part they all mean something or stand for something important to me.”
FB: Is there anything that gets you especially motivated for games?
EL: “Just having the opportunity to play and being blessed keeps me motivated. I don’t ever want to let up because there’s always somebody out there who’s at home working out and waiting on the chance to be here.”
FB: You seem relatively quiet, but one who always carries a smile. What is it that makes you tick off the court?
EL: “Just to know that I’m up, alive, kicking and moving and to be able to do what I love. There are a lot of people who are less fortunate out there. There are people who don’t even have jobs because of the bad economy. To be able to get up every morning, do what I love and to get paid for it is probably the best thing ever.”