Less than eight months until the Seattle Storm tips off 2008.
Okay, that still seems like an awfully long wait, but now we can put the opener on the calendar in pen after Professional Basketball Club, LLC Chairman Clayton Bennett announced Friday that the Storm will play the 2008 season at KeyArena.
That announcement shouldn't come as a surprise to fans who heard Storm COO Karen Bryant express her optimism about 2008 at the viewing party with Lauren Jackson a couple of weeks ago. Here at Storm HQ, efforts have already been directed toward next season, but it's good to have confirmation the Storm will be here.
On the other coast, the U.S. Women's Senior National Team was preparing for the FIBA Americas Championship. The U.S. swept a pair of exhibitions with a short-handed Australian Opals squad (playing without Lauren Jackson and Penny Taylor), winning 96-64 and then 70-66.
Now the U.S. Women are in Chile, where the tournament to qualify for the FIBA Americas spot in the Olympics begins Wednesday.
While the U.S. was in Connecticut for the second exhibition, WNBA.com's Adam Hirshfield caught up with Sue Bird and Anne Donovan for Q&As.
Q. How do you feel the team is coming together at this point with just a
couple of days until your opener in Chile?
A. "We've only been practicing for two weeks or so, but I think we're coming together great. Even though we play on different teams in the WNBA, almost all of us have played together at some point in our careers. And when you have a group of people that just wants to win -- a group that doesn't care about points, rebounds, any of that stuff, and is just focused on winning a gold medal -- good things are going
to happen and chemistry comes pretty quickly."
Q: How does the current wide range of ages on the team benefit the
future of USA Basketball?
A: "I think the women have done very well with that over the years, where we have always had our steady players that are two-, three-, four-... sometimes five-time Olympians that bring the experience and bring the heart and bring the know-how of what it takes to compete at this level and win gold medals. It's also nice to bring along the younger players that get to be a part of that in a smaller role. But as the older players leave the program, Teresa Edwards, Katrina McClain, they have passed that torch on to Dawn, and she is now passing it on to Lisa Leslie, Sheryl Swoopes, Katie Smith, Diana Taurasi, Catch and Sue Bird."