You Ask, Locke Answers - Aug. 19, 2003
From Amy in Pennsylvania
Hi. First off I am a huge Storm fan. I follow every game through the internet or on TV. My huge question is how are Sue (who is my favorite player) and Lauren going to carry this team into the playoffs? Right now it seems as though everyone is standing around watching Lauren play like an MVP and is pretty much carrying the team. Even with Sue's injury she needs to step up a little. They have a great team I just hope they can get it together soon.
Playoffs are suddenly going to be very tough to achieve. The injuries to Adia Barnes and Kamila have exposed the lack of depth on this club. Rememer while everyone else has had 5 to 7 years to acquire talent Seattle has only had 4 and in two of those drafts there was almost no impact players avaliable. If you look back at the 2000 draft Kamila is probably the best player from that draft that is in the league. Only second round pick Adrian Williams, has made the all-star game. This last years draft was very sparse as well. Check out Indiana they are having much of the same struggles.
From Roger Freeman in Seattle
Since I don't fully understand the WNBA draft process, can you explain how local players like Jiuliana Mendiola or Andrea Lulum from the University of Washington could be considered for future spots with the Storm? Jiuliana is an ALL PAC 10 Player of the Year (good Shooting guard to complement Sue) and Andrea, 6'4 is a big body who can shoot the 3 (help bring the defense of to free up Lauren down low). I understand the Huskies lead the PAC 10 in attendance? I think both could be assets in building the Storm fan base by going after local talent? If not the Storm, do you think either player might have a future in the WNBA?
Guilana may get drafted in the second or third round of the draft. Maybe earlier if she contiues to be so outstanding. It is hard to project Lalum. The draft process is the same as any other league. There is no advantage to having them in your back-yard. If they go undrafted they both will become free-agents the Storm could sign. This year's draft is supposed to be very good.
From Therese Wells
You pointed out (correctly) in a recent broadcast that the Minnesota Lynx don't play very well when Svetlana Abrasimova is on the floor. She's obviously a quality player, just not a good fit for the Lynx. But she'd be a great addition for the Storm. What would it take to pry her away from Minnesota in the offseason - a first round pick? Simone Edwards and a second? A frontline of Lauren, Kamila and Svet with Sue in the backcourt and Adia coming off the bench would be formidable.
This off-season will be wild. The new salary cap and free agency will go into full effect. For the first time, there will be player movement. This will be a huge boon to Seattle and Indiana that have had less opportunity to acquire talent. In regards to potential trades, the Storm's first round pick may be very valuable if they don't make the playoffs. How is that for a silver lining.
From Jimm Nawrocki
How would you rate the job that Ann Donovan has done compared to Lin Dunn? I've liked the way Donovan has helped Lauren Jackson's game, but it doesn't seem like she has gotten a lot out of her bench. I also wonder about some of the players chosen for this year's roster. The team is small at some positions and not as athletic as some of the upper echelon teams. I know the Storm has some key injuries, but they seem to be folding down the stretch while last year's team pulled it out. I like Lin Dunn, and what she did for this franchise. Trying to keep the faith. I'll be there for the last two home games.
It is almost impossible to compare because the franchise is at a different stage. Lin Dunn was a great coach for the franchise in its opening years. Anne Donovan is as good as any coach I have ever been around. She is remarkable. Her ability to feel what her team needs at the correct time is remarkable. She has had to work hard to change the culture of the team from a club that has lost a lot to team that is unwilling to lose. It is going to take time, but I promise you that Anne Donovan is the perfect coach for Seattle. Also, this off-season she will be able to mold the franchise as she wishes with a year of knowledge under her belt. That may be the most exciting of all.