Saturday, January 31, 2009

Storm Waives Swoopes

The Storm's decision Saturday to waive guard Sheryl Swoopes came down to maintaining flexibility. Swoopes' contract called for her 2009 salary to become guaranteed if she was on the roster on Feb. 1, forcing the Storm to make a decision on her future in the midst of putting together a complicated free-agent puzzle with multiple moving pieces.

With Swoopes' salary on the cap, the Storm would have limited its options in addressing other needs in free agency.

"It was a very tough decision to release Sheryl," explained Storm Head Coach Brian Agler in a statement. "Our free agency priorities right now are to secure depth both at the post and point guard positions."

The Storm continues to negotiate to re-sign incumbent starting posts Lauren Jackson and Yolanda Griffith while also attempting to secure Janell Burse's return to the WNBA after she decided to sit out the 2008 season. The additional flexibility makes it possible for the Storm to retain all three players while also looking to add depth at the point-guard position behind All-Star Sue Bird.

Agler was appreciative of what Swoopes brought to the Storm during her season in Seattle.

"We were fortunate to be able to add Sheryl to our roster last year as her leadership and experience were a key part of our 22-win season. We are thankful for her contributions to the Storm on and off the court and wish her the best as she moves on to the next step in her career."

23 comments:

Christine said...

Needless to say, I am extremely disappointed in this decision by the Storm. I realize she is toward the end of her career, but she is one of the best players to have ever played the game (collegiate, Olympic, and WNBA championships)and that is more than I can say for many of the players in the league. Her skills are still significantly better than most and her leadership and experience would benefit the Storm again this season.

In addition, Sheryl has worked very hard for the Storm this offseason and helped maintain their image in the community. Thank you Sheryl for all you have done for the Storm and women's basketball.

Anonymous said...

i guess sheryl is the first person to be affected by the shortened 11-person roster. as coach agler said yesterday, we have to have players who are healthy.

best of luck to sheryl; despite her inability to play at the level we expected, she truly did bring those intangibles to the storm last year.

Anonymous said...

Ohhh boy.. what's next for the Storm?

swoopesbabe said...

my heart is broken once again.queen of the court is gone.that really stinks,1st,she left home from the comets 2 the storm and now she has no team that really bites.she will always be the greatest in my eyes. your biggest fan.

Anonymous said...

This is big news, but you know what: we have to have healthy young players. I think this is a gutsy move by Brian but I think he is right on. Thank you Sheryl for everything, I hope you do great no matter what you do. All the best .... Bret

Anonymous said...

I am very disappointed in this dision, although she didnt have the best of season last year she is know for her comebacks that she provides after stuggling in a season.

Patrick said...

what are the waiver wire rules? how long after a player is waived by a team before the original team can offer a new contract to the player that they waived?

Anonymous said...

This is sad...while watching Az.Wash game, she was there with Jordan...what a way to announce this news at the 11th hour(10:30pm). i hope she had the heads up. The best to you Swoopes. You are the Greatest.

Anonymous said...

I am disappointed also. She is one of my favorite players. This is just another example of the "bad" business aspect of the league. Another was trimming the roster to 11. There are just too many talented players out there. If you are going to trim the roster and let people like Sheryl go, then lets have more expansion teams.

Winterjl said...

Tough position for Brian as Sheryl brought so much passion, leadership, and community visibility for the Storm. And, I'm sure I speak for several others who had an increased interest in coming to see the Storm play with a legend on the roster.

But, with only an 11 player roster and a city that hopes for a championship every year, it is regrettably understandable that Brian had to fill gaps with a reliably healthy roster.

That said, I implore the Storm owners, GM, and Brian to explore how Sheryl can start the next phase of her career in Seattle. She is an amazing ambassador for womens athletics and if there is a leadership role for her in Seattle (coaching, PR, analyst, etc.) - I hope this city can entice Sheryl to continue to call Seattle home for a few more years. I have no doubt that Sheryl and her visibility in the community would only increase the success (financially) of the Storm.

Thank you Sheryl for all you've done and you'll continue to do for women's professional basketball. I and my daughter are forever Swoopes fans!

Anonymous said...

Sheryl is truly a great player, but she is at the end of career. She went into this knowing that sports careers are not long. Girls going into college now will have more opportunities because of Sheryl and others like her. But when you come to the last page, it's time to close the book. Thank you, Sheryl, for making it a wonderful book

Anonymous said...

Serious? This is how this amazing player is how the Legend Sheryl Swoopes is sent out? A blog post? Ouch.

Anonymous said...

Sheryl is a huge asset on and off the court in Seattle. I am very disapointed that she is leaving. Sheryl is a class act, and will be missed. Thank you so much Sheryl for all you have done for women's basketball and for the Storm.

Anonymous said...

Lets hope we can resign Lauren Jackson..not that we release Hoops

Melissa said...

WOW!! Not very smart in leting go one of the most highly respected players in the WNBA. How is it that the NBA can over come all the obsticles in keeping highly paid players... We as fans need to go out there and support the WNBA games and keep the franchise growing. Sheryl you are the best and will always be. Crossing my fingers that you return back to Houston and finish your career there. Keep your head high you are the top player of your game. Seattle your lost baby!! Sheryl best of luck to you. No matter what team you go to I will follow because Im a true fan since the Comet erra... Go SWOOPES!!!

Anonymous said...

It was truly a surprised to catch this in last night news about Sheryl's release. Yeah, she's at the end of her career, but,she has heart and gave all she had last season. Bad decision but everyone esp. the coach and owners, wants that championship and younger and agile players. Hopefully, a team owner will see the light to have Sheryl in their organization in whatever capacity. She'll be a fantastic asset! Good luck Sheryl! Will miss seeing you play!

Brooke said...

Storm, keep Sheryl in Seattle. She is a wonderful asset to our athletic community. The youth from our church who met her will always remember her graceful presence.
Sheryl, stay if you can. We love and need you. Best to you, Alisa and Jordan.
Brooke

Tara in P-land said...

This is horrible news. The Storm are the only good thing in Seattle sports right now, and Swoopes was a big part of that. Swoopes put people in the seats, I know a whole group of people who bought season tickets just because she was there. I drive up from Portland just to see her play. Point is, she is a women's sports legend and a classy lady on and off the court. Having her as part of the organization makes the Storm a better team, and Seattle a better place. I hope the Storm can figure out a way to get the fresh players they need, but still re-sign Swoopes to the team in some capacity.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps now we can resign Betty ????? builds up the PG support for Sue

Seth said...

wow... gutsy move by Coach. while i understand the move... i think Swoopes had a tough season last year, yet was gearing up for a good year. 11 on the roster definitely affects us.

i am really glad i got to be on the side of cheering her on, if only for one season. she brought all she had and left it with us. thank you Cheryl for all you have given for women's basketball. may you prosper in your next adventures!

still gonna be in my seat cheering on our Storm!

Anonymous said...

If you love Sheryl and want to still see her, she's now coaching junior high basket ball at the Overlake School in Redmond. Show her your love and put yourself in a seat at their games!!!

Anonymous said...

YOUR #1 FAN LOVES YOU. YOU ARE AND WILL ALWAYS A TRUE LEADER AND MY MVP.
WNBA 1ST DRAFT PICK
COLLEGE CHAMPIONSHIP & MVP
WNBA 3 CHAMPIONSHIP & MVP
OLYMPIC GOLD MEDALS

YOU ARE THE ORIGANL WNBA POSTER GIRL
YOU HAVE ACCOMPLISHED WHAT EVERY GIRLS DREAMS TO ACHIEVE!

A TRUE LOST TO THE WNBA!!!!!!!!

YOU ARE THE BAHAMAS #1 WNBA PLAYER
GOD BLESS YOU

LOVE MA RUBY AND DIVA

Anonymous said...

Sheryl Swoops not only brought experience and maturity to the court, she also brought class. It's important to have real leadership on and off the court. She is an upstanding person and a great role model to our girls. She cannot be replaced..I think the Storm made a huge mistatke.

Good luck Sheryl, may God open bigger and better doors for you to walk through..