Friday, July 6, 2007

Great Win

The Storm had lost 12 times in 13 regular-season visits to Houston. The Storm was without starting point guard Sue Bird. With Bird, the Storm lost at Houston eight days ago. It all added up to a loss tonight at the Toyota Center.


Instead, the Storm controlled most of this game and took care of business in the second half for a 71-55 win over the Houston Comets.

Lots of kudos tonight. Lauren Jackson was, of course, brilliant. Jackson was two points shy of another 30-point effort, but shot 11-for-17 from the field and grabbed 13 rebounds despite occasionally facing a box-and-one defense. (That reminds me of how New York Coach Pat Coyle joked before Sunday's game she would defend Jackson: A box-and-one with the box on LJ.)

Betty Lennox was outstanding, hitting four three-pointers, and Iziane Castro Marques hit two to supply the needed outside shooting. Wendy Palmer gave big minutes off the bench, putting up six points and six boards in 15 minutes.

Still, I think Alan and Adia were right to bring Tanisha Wright over for their postgame interview on 1150 AM KKNW. Starting in place of Sue Bird, Wright wasn't perfect - as she pointed out afterwards, her five turnovers were too many, though tempered by the presence of pesky Crystal Smith - but she gave the Storm everything you could ask for. Wright had some big offensive boards and a big steal, handed out five assists and scored eight points. The Storm can win with play like that.

The only disappointment - and there isn't one, really, but bear with me - was Shona Thorburn did not get in and I'm excited to see Thorburn get some run. The newly-signed point guard won me over with her play for the University of Utah during the 2006 NCAA Tournament, when the Utes advanced within an overtime of the Final Four.

Now it's off to San Antonio. Frankly, by winning one game on this road trip, the Storm has met my expectations. A win tomorrow against the Silver Stars or Tuesday in L.A. would make this an incredible trip.


Anonymous said...

ok...i'm very happy with the win. i also am looking forward to seeing SHONA..i watched her too in the tournament so i'm VERY EAGER to see her play. i'm also VERY PLEASED with the defense we've discovered! it's about time!!!

HOWEVER...i'm very concerned about the timeline given on SUE BIRD. i was very optimistic about 4 maybe 5 games, but now i'm hearing a MONTH or possibly more. which way should i "lean" on the time frame? i know nothing is for certain, but what do we really want to have in our minds with this? THANKS..GREAT WIN FOR THE STORM!!!

Kevin Pelton said...

It is always tough to say how long rehab will take after a surgery. I've tried to be careful to emphasize that two weeks is an estimate, though it might be wise to err on the side of conservatism.