Monday, February 23, 2009

Storm Roster Taking Shape

With this morning's announcement that the Storm has signed veteran guard Shannon Johnson, Head Coach and Director of Player Personnel Brian Agler has moved another step closer to the team's 2009 roster. Johnson gives the Storm nine players under contract, with three more (Kimberly Beck, Kristen O'Neill and Kelly Santos) invited to training camp.

Of course, there's one big free agent still out there in Lauren Jackson, and the Storm has continued to be proactive in her recruitment. Agler flew to Spain to visit with Jackson (and Sue Bird) last week when their Spartak team was in Valencia to play Ros Casares in the Euroleague playoffs.

The Storm's first-round pick, the 12th overall selection in the April 9 WNBA Draft, will have the inside track to one spot on the roster, limited to 11 players this season. The addition of Johnson and signing post players Suzy Batkovic, Janell Burse and Ashley Robinson filled the biggest needs for the Storm heading into the offseason (backup PG and post depth). Add the versatility of players on the roster and Agler and company have the opportunity to focus on scouting for talent without a heavy eye toward position.

"I think we're open," he said recently. "Fortifying the post does help us. It gives us a little more flexibility to be open with who we draft. We feel like we're going to get a very quality player at the 12th pick. We don't know who it's going to be. We've got our eye on a few people and we have an idea what the pool of players is going to be when we get there, and we're still evaluating."

The Storm and other WNBA teams are limited to 15 spots in training camp, and bringing to camp both the first-round pick and the Storm's third-round pick would put the team at 14. As a result, don't expect a lot of movement between now and the draft as scouting the college ranks becomes the name of the game.

Storm players under contract for 2009:
Suzy Batkovic
Sue Bird
Janell Burse
Swin Cash
Katie Gearlds
Shannon Johnson
Camille Little
Ashley Robinson
Tanisha Wright


Anonymous said...

Welcome Pee Wee!
I'm getting a little lost. Who is under contract now. Katie Geralds?
Camille Little? If there are, are they for one or more than one year?

Kevin Pelton said...

Gearlds and Little are both entering the third year of their rookie contracts. The fourth year will be a team option.

Sheila said...

What's the latest status on Swin's back? Last we heard at the winter warm up event was she was on her way back from o'seas and was going to get her back checked out....

Oh, and any word on LJ???????????

Katherine said...

The Storm wouldn't be the same team without LJ I hope she re-signs with the Storm soon

yue5000 said...

It really would suck if LJ doesn't end up coming back :(

Anonymous said...

kevin.. what's the latest on LJ? is agler back in seattle?? any good news about the trip?? im still hoping that LJ will be back with seattle..go storm!!!

Anonymous said...

How can we tell LJ of our fervent hope that she'll still be playing with the Storm? Does she watch this blog? Can she e-mailed directly?

Kevin Pelton said...

If you want to direct your thoughts to, we'll pass them along.

On Cash: Haven't heard any update since that news at the Winter Warmup.

xjennersonx said...

I'm sure LJ will make the right decision and return to the Storm. You know she doesn't want to play anywhere else. She loves it here :)