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2012-13 Offseason Plans

Kevin Pelton, StormBasketball.com | Oct. 4, 2012

Svetlana Abrosimova

Svetlana Abrosimova

Team: Dynamo Moscow

Abrosimova is headed to a new team in her native Russia after playing with Sue Bird for UMMC Ekaterinburg last season. When Abrosimova decided to come to the WNBA, Dynamo offered to let her join the team on Dec. 1, which means Abrosimova will be long past her sprained right wrist by the time she begins playing again. "I have two months until I report," she said. "I didn't play as much in the playoffs as the other girls, so I'm not as banged up. I feel good."


Sue Bird

Sue Bird

Team: UMMC Ekaterinburg

Bird's immediate future includes surgery on her left hip labrum. The hip injury, which Bird has been able to play on with doctors' blessing for years, flared up late in the regular season and was particularly bad early in the series against Minnesota. Before Game 1, specialist Dr. Marc J. Philippon recommended that Bird finish out the playoffs and then undergo the same surgery she had on her right hip labrum last year. "It's really pretty much the same," she said, "which is good because I know what to expect, I know how to get through it and the best part is I know it will be successful. I'm very excited to put the hip stuff in the past because I've been dealing with it for a long time and the last month was tough." As she did last season, Bird plans to join her UMMC Ekaterinburg team after the holidays.


Alysha Clark

Alysha Clark

Team: Ramat Hasharon

Clark, who holds Israeli citizenship, will play in Israel for the third consecutive winter. This is her second year with Ramat Hasharon. While overseas, Clark will continue to work on the transition to playing on the perimeter as a pro. "Definitely my shot, then also ballhandling - being comfortable with the ball in my hands, whether it's coming off a screen or for a pull-up jumper," she said. "Those are the main things I'm working on."


Lauren Jackson

Lauren Jackson

Team: Canberra Capitals

It's back home for Jackson, who will play in her native Australia with the Canberra Capitals this season. First, Jackson will be checked out by doctors at the AIS to determine what rehab is needed to come back from lower-back nerve pain that has also affected her hamstring. "I just need to get back to a point where I'm confident I can play and my body is there for me," she said. "I know that going back to Australia right now is a blessing." It also means staying in her new home, which was recently completed. "All the furniture's in there," she added. "Sunday is my first night in my house. I can't wait."


Ewelina Kobryn

Ewelina Kobryn

Team: UMMC Ekaterinburg

It's a big change for Kobryn, who spent five seasons with Wisla Can-Pack Krakow and had played her entire career in Poland before signing to play alongside Bird in Russia this winter. Kobryn headed back home early Thursday and will have a couple of weeks in Poland before joining the team.


Camille Little

Camille Little

Team: Shanghai Baoshan

Little enjoyed her experience in China last winter enough that she's headed back for year two in Shanghai. "The experience was nice," she said, explaining the decision. "The team I was on, the location, the people in the organization, the length of the season (all factored in). The first game is Oct. 27 and the last game is mid-January. Playoffs start after that. Compared to a six-month season - I've played in Israel and we don't get home until April - there's no argument there. And the money is as good or better."


Katie Smith

Katie Smith

Plans: Studying dietetics at The Ohio State University

This is the second year for Smith in a three-year master's degree program at her alma mater. "It's our supervised practice rotation, so it's more like an internship or residency," she explained. "My first rotation is WIC - women, infants and children - in downtown Columbus." Smith will start on Tuesday. She will also find time to serve as a grad assistant for the Buckeyes, working to mentor players following in her footsteps, including WNBA prospect Tayler Hill.


Shekinna Stricklen

Shekinna Stricklen

Team: Homend Antakya

For the first time, rookie Stricklen is headed overseas. She will play in Turkey, one of the most competitive national leagues, on the same team as former Storm forward Jana Vesela. Understandably, Stricklen has some trepidation, but she's looking forward to going to Turkey. "A little nervous, but I'm really excited," she said. "It's a new experience. I'm a little nervous about being over there by myself, but it will be alright."


Tina Thompson

Tina Thompson

Plans: Home in Houston

For years, Thompson has eschwed playing overseas to rest and focus on her role as mom to seven-year-old son Dyllan. The two have been apart recently after Dyllan returned to their home in Houston with Thompson's mother, though he was able to travel to Game 1 of the series against Minnesota. Thompson can't wait to get back to him. "Extremely excited," she said. "He's the love of my life."


Ann Wauters

Ann Wauters

Team: Galatasaray

After winning a championship with one star-studded European team last year (Ros Casares Valencia, which folded after the season), Wauters joins another one in Turkey. Her teammates with Galatasaray will include Sylvia Fowles, Sancho Lyttle (her former teammate with Ros Casares) and Lindsay Whalen.


Tanisha Wright

Tanisha Wright

Plans: Home in Charlotte

After battling left knee soreness all season, Wright does not plan to play overseas this winter. "I'm going to take some time off, let my body rest and heal," she said. "I didn't have the healthiest season this year. Now it's time to let my body do the talking." Wright considered going overseas in January, but wants to see how her knee responds when she starts ramping up her offseason workouts. She'll be based at her home in Charlotte while also spending time at her alma mater, Penn State.

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