Overseas Update: Chante Black
After a year on injured reserve, Chante Black is showing no signs of a back injury that kept her out of the WNBA in 2011 as she just completed a dominant season overseas.
Black appeared in 19 games in China for Shandong this off-season, averaging 16.5 points, 12.4 rebounds, 1.9 blocks, 1.3 steals on 56.1 percent shooting from the field.
“I feel good,” Black said. “I played overseas in China and my back didn't give me any problems.”
Black was acquired alongside Amber Holt in a 2010 Draft day deal where the Shock sent the seventh overall pick in 2010 and a second round pick in 2011 to the Connecticut Sun.
“My injury last summer was fairly new being that it occurred close to the date when most of the players returned from overseas right before training camp started,” Black said. “The WNBA is a very competitive environment with limited spots and I knew initially there was a high chance my back could prevent me from performing well at a professional level. I didn't want to be a detriment to the team.”
[Related Story: Overseas Update: Tiffany Jackson ]
Black has spent the past two off-seasons working on her shooting range and being more confident with her shot to complement her rebounding and shot-blocking prowess. Black averaged 5.2 points, 6.5 rebounds, 1.6 blocks on 53.7 percent shooting from the field in 34 games. In 2010, Black started 23 games for a transitioning Shock team and was amongst the league leaders in rebound rate per 40 minutes.
“I’m excited about being back out there on the court and being a part of an organization that is determined to take great strides in building a successful WNBA team,” Black said. “I’m looking forward to sharing the joy of our fans. From the year that I played with Tulsa, our fans were the most loyal and dedicated people that I’ve witnessed within the WNBA.”
Despite being absent for a year, Black will join familiar teammates Tiffany Jackson, Ivory Latta, Amber Holt and Jennifer Lacy while adapting to newcomers Temeka Johnson, Karima Christmas and Kayla Pedersen. Black will be expected fill the rebounding and shot-blocking void left by Elizabeth Cambage’s absence for the first half of the season as she trains for the 2012 Olympics with her Australian teammates.
“I have nothing but positive expectations for this team,” Black said. “I’m looking forward to great team chemistry and hoping all the pieces that have been missing in the past finally come together.”