Canty Shows the Sky’s Newcomers the Ropes

Entering her 13th season in the league, Chicago native Canty feels right at home for more reason than one.

“It’s great because once I left for college, I was gone for years,” says Canty. “My parents and friends would come down to the University of Alabama maybe once a year to see me play. But as soon as I found out they had a team here I was trying to get back to Chicago so that I could play in front of them. It’s exciting that I get to see my friends and family everyday and they are able to come to all of my home games.”

For the past four seasons, Canty has been with the Sky and during that span has developed her role as a veteran leader. With an influx of new young players, Canty enjoys her established role.

“There are a lot of young faces on the team this year,” Canty says. “I have taken on the leadership role for the past two or three years. I have just been trying to keep all of the young players in line by making sure they are doing the things they need to do on and off the court. I’ve always been a leader by action and do whatever I can do to help them out because I have to pass the torch at some point.”

But she’s not ready to do that just yet. While playing for Detroit, Houston, and Chicago over 12 seasons, Canty has noticed the evolution of women’s basketball, but still knows how to make the most of her talents.

“Coming into the league years ago, you always had the powerhouses such as the Houston Comets and the New York Liberty,” Canty says. “They were the teams who were always favored to win at the end of the day, but now you have so much young talent. These girls have gotten faster, stronger and are more talented all around. The pace has picked up a lot. Even now with Pokey as the coach, she wants to run, it wasn’t like that back then. But that’s the game I like to play anyway.”

The fast paced, running game, which the Sky likes to run, caters to Canty’s strengths and style. However, as the season approaches Canty has been focusing on improving other aspects of her game to help her team.

“I have been working on my jump shot,” Canty says. “I promised myself to take more 3-point shots this year. Getting older you have to be able to go from point A to B as quick as possible and sometimes that means just shooting a jump shot. I had off time during the off-season overseas to go in the gym and just get a lot of shots up. That has basically been my main focus.”

Adding a consistent jumper for someone who can attack the basket like Canty is a surefire way of keeping ahead of the youth movement in the WNBA. With three talented guards in the Sky lineup to go with the strength in the post, the season looks promising indeed.