score: Storm 67 Sky 61 (W) (1-0)
Watch | Slightly twangy, but otherwise solid
Psyche | Waiting for a chance to explode,
and got it in the 3rd quarter.
Highlight | The 3rd quarter and the 23-1 run.
| Dude with a big wheel... and extremely
Keyword of the Game | Timeout management
E | Rick
almost unbelievable to be where we are right now.
someone had told me at the end of last season that in just
a few months, the team would have new, local, owners, a new
coach, new All-Star-All Decade-All-Everything players on the
roster and a fresh break from the degenerating circus that
is the Sonics' saga, I would have laughed at them in the face.
like many who I had talked to, had given up hope and didn't
really expect to ever see another Storm game in Seattle.
have a way of changing, and every once in awhile the good
guys get a break.
gone from frustration and hope-crushing uncertainty to an
almost embarrassment of riches:
amazing owners group made up of role-model business women
committed to making this team successful in Seattle.
new coaching staff who is unafraid to make some of the boldest
moves we've ever seen with this team.
roster seemingly built to deliver a championship... now.
was the first real opportunity for the fans to come together
and let the owners and team know how we felt about all of
this. The owners being introduced got the first standing ovation.
The team intro, complete with over-the-top center court platform
and lots of smoke got more cheers. Our near-super powered
starting 5 were brought up last and got the 12,000 in the
stands going crazy. Truly, we were all poised for a memorable
night and start of something incredible.
just had that pesky thing called a game to play.
it is with every season, our first game (or two) end up being
an extended preseason. Tonight it was even worse since LJ
and Sue were later arriving from Russia than ever before.
Throughout the first half of the game, it felt like a tune-up
game instead of a home opener — no one was in the right
spots during half court sets, no one was in position for defensive
rebounds and the Sky was able to pretty much get whatever
was perhaps the best answer to all the hype and expectations.
The first two quarters brought things down to earth a bit
and reminded everyone that there is nothing about this season
that will be a lock.
Sky out-rebounded, out-hustled and consistently disrupted
any flow that the Storm had on offense. This isn't to say
they were blowing out the Storm. They weren't — the
score was tight the whole way, right up to the end of the
second quarter when the Sky was able to put together a mini-run
to go up by 6. The two doing the most damage were Perkins
and Melvin. I had expected to see more of Sylvia Fowles, but
unlike the other big name rookie debuting in the W today,
she wasn't able to get anything going because of foul trouble.
out of halftime, things started to get a little hairy as the
Sky took off and threatened to blow the game open for real.
They picked right up where they left off in the second quarter
and were again playing with more energy than the Storm and
Agler called a timeout a minute or so in and it was like he
hit a big switch labeled "play like a team." The
Storm turned on the jets and went on a killer run. If this
is what is ahead of us this season, we're going to be having
a lot of fun this summer.
started to gel. Everyone got involved and the threat LJ, Cash,
Yo, Swoopes and Sue present being on the floor at the same
time became all too clear. The Sky didn't know who to defend
or from where the offense was coming.
was most impressed with Sue and Swin.
because even though she's only been working under Coach Agler's
system for a couple days, she was directing the offense and,
when necessary, getting her own points. I've said it many
times, but she may be the most adept at knowing when to go
for a score instead of setting up a teammate. Every bucket
she hits seems to come at key moments when the team most needs
her to shoot. She's the most deliberate shooter out there.
because she took the most advantage of the time she spent
on the floor and contributed in all sorts of small and large
ways. She had more offensive rebounds than any other Storm
player and was second in assists only to Sue. She scored inside
and outside and was the veteran on the floor with the bench
to lead that unit. It looks to me like Coach Agler is really
giving Swin a chance, even on this team of legends, to play
to her strengths and be a team leader. As I wrote in my preseason
game recap, I see Swin as the Storm's secret weapon and forsee
her having a great year here.
good times didn't necessarily continue. Things did come back
down to looking like that preseason game at the end of the
fourth quarter. With the bench in and a 15 or so point lead,
the Sky went back on a tear and made all of us a little nervous
about the outcome.
say "all of us" because even the coaches got nervous.
Coach Agler sent LJ, Sue and Swoopes back out to the scorer's
table to check back in as the Sky clawed back into the game.
clock, however, was against the Sky and they ran out of time
before any of the Storm starters really needed to come back
in. If the game had been 5 minutes longer, it might have been
a different story.
game really was the start of a new era. It was also a nice
reminder than nothing can be taken for granted. Hope is back,
expectations are high, but as stacked roster doesn't guarantee
anything. It's a long way to October and it's nice to get
started with a win.
kept expecting Fowles to dunk and while I would have loved
to have seen it, I'm glad her butt was kept on the bench and
she didn't get a chance.
was nice. I expected more.
Patty Murray was in the front row, along with the new owners,
KB and WNBA President Donna Orender.
"Everyone Clap Your Hands" was almost tolerable
when only used once a half.
the ball "kids" have their names on their shirts
now (I say "kids" because most of them are out of
high school or in college).
one of the coolest moments I've ever seen in sports, the players
went over to the owners after the game and pulled them all
in to the postgame huddle. That was seriously cool.