2011 WNBA Draft - Power Forwards
Kevin Pelton, StormBasketball.com | April 6, 2011
StormBasketball.com is taking a look at the top prospects for the April 11 WNBA Draft on a position-by-position basis. For the top players on the board, Storm Head Coach Brian Agler offers his insider take as well as a comparison to a current WNBA player. Today we continue with power forwards.
From: Xavier | Height: 6-5 | Born: 1/16/88
Key Stats - PPG: 18.7 | RPG: 10.2 | APG: 2.1
Bio: A multitalented star who teamed with Ta'Shia Phillips and new Washington Head Coach Kevin McGuff to lead the Musketeers to unprecedented heights, Harris was the Atlantic 10 Player of the Year as both a junior and a senior. She had the opportunity to head to the WNBA last season because she missed the 2008-09 season following knee surgery, but chose to come back and enjoyed her best all-around season. Harris has the size of the post with the skills of a forward.
WNBA comparison: "I'm not saying she has the same motor, I'm not saying she's at the same level, but her game is very similar to Lauren's."
From: Kentucky | Height: 6-1 | Born: 9/19/89
Key Stats - PPG: 17.0 | RPG: 8.7 | APG: 1.5
Bio: Kentucky's pressure defense was built around Dunlap, an uber-athletic combo forward who averaged more than three steals per game. Dunlap also happens to be very effective on the other end of the floor, where she excels at getting to the free throw line. The combination made her the SEC's Player of the Year as a senior and the first Wildcat ever named to an Associated Press All-America Team (Third Team the last two years).
Coach Agler says … "Great athlete. Very aggressive type of player."
WNBA comparison: "Maybe Camille."
From: North Carolina | Height: 6-3 | Born: 2/23/88
Key Stats - PPG: 12.4 | RPG: 7.1 | APG: 1.6
Bio: Following a fine junior season, Breland was diagnosed with Hodgkin's Lymphoma. After undergoing treatment at UNC Hospital, she returned for her redshirt senior campaign at close to full strength. Stamina was an issue for Breland at times as she averaged 23.0 minutes per game, but she was as effective as ever when she was on the floor. Breland is one of the best shot blockers in the draft.
Coach Agler says … "Rangy four player. Can face up, can play with her back to the basket. Tremendous instincts. Great skill level. How hard she wants to play will determine what kind of player she can be."
WNBA comparison: "Maybe sort of a DeLisha Milton-Jones sort of player."
From: Texas A&M | Height: 6-1 | Born: 2/19/89
Key Stats - PPG: 16.2 | RPG: 3.1 | APG: 2.6
Bio: Adams capped a phenomenal NCAA Tournament run by scoring 22 of her 30 points in the second half of last night's championship game as Texas A&M knocked off Notre Dame to win the first title in school history. An undersized post player who has learned to overcome her lack of height with quickness, skill and savvy, Adams has been compared to NBA Hall of Famer Charles Barkley by ESPN's Doris Burke. Her performance in March and April may just have moved her into the first round of the draft.
Coach Agler says … "Big, widebody. Can score inside and out."
WNBA comparison: "Sort of a bigger version of Latasha Byears."
From: Arizona | Height: 6-2 | Born: 10/5/89
Key Stats - PPG: 16.1 | RPG: 9.8 | APG: 1.9
Bio: Since the retirement of Storm color analyst Adia Barnes, there has not been an Arizona player in the WNBA. Ibekwe hopes to change that after winning Pac-10 Defensive Player of the Year honors each of her last two seasons. Ibekwe plays bigger than her size and led the conference in rebounding in addition to averaging 2.3 steals and 1.5 blocks per game. Her range out to the three-point line might allow her to play small forward in the WNBA.
Coach Agler says … "Good athlete. Plays the three and the four."
WNBA comparison: "She sort of reminds me and has a similar skill set - doesn't have the motor of this person - but reminds me of Swin."
OTHER POWER FORWARD PROSPECTS
Kourtney Brown, Buffalo - The MAC Player of the Year, she set school records for scoring, rebounding and blocked shots and finished with the most blocks in conference history.
Adrienne Johnson, Louisiana Tech - Undersized rebounding machine (9.6 per game) was the WAC's Player of the Year.
Courtney Taylor, Houston - Two-time pick as Conference USA Player of the Year on the strength of her 11.1 rebounds per game as a senior.