SPOTTED: Detroit would have to make cuts in order to make any moves, but former Oklahoma star Ashley Paris, who was cut by Los Angeles, is seated baseline and former Shock Barb Farris is at the other end watching the game. Seattle up 14-6 with 30 seconds left in opening quarter.
GET ZELLOUS: Detroit is shooting a horrid 2 of 12 from the field. But the Storm is only up 12-6 after a driving layin by Cash. Good defense by Seattle.
THUNDER STORM: Detroit was forced to call a timeout after Seattle jumped out to a 8-2 lead with 6:48 remaining. There’s a blaze of fire in the player’s eyes and I don’t see any mistakes. They are fighting on defense, with Jackson getting a block and Little collecting a charge and big rebound. Cash, who Agler talked to yesterday about not pushing too hard, nailed her first shot and looks comfortable.
Storm rookie Ashley Walker is on the court warming up with the team and could possibly play tonight after missing the past 14 matchups due to an injured right toe.
Walker, who starred at California, was transitioning from the power forward to small forward position prior to suffering the injury. Because she plays along the perimeter and that’s where Seattle is thin, coach Brian Agler is leaning toward using the inexperienced player.
The trade deadline passed on Monday and the Storm, long stating they like their team, balked on making any moves. Agler does want to get players more rest and recognizes mental errors like the rash of turnovers lately. But he contends the players can work this out.
Seattle still has a two-game lead on second place in the Western Conference despite going 5-5 in its past 10 games, including losing the past two games. Detroit is in a similar situation, 2.5-games out of the fourth and final playoff seed in the East. The Shock (9-13) has lost their past two and is 5-5 in their past 10.
But, due to G Katie Smith, the Shock hasn’t had trouble against Seattle. She scored 16 points in the second half of the inaugural meeting at KeyArena to help Detroit win 66-63. The Shock is 5-3 all-time against the Storm at The Palace of Auburn Hills.
In a continual effort to battle injuries and get some wins, GM Cheryl Reeve traded Kristin Haynie to Sacramento in exchange for F Crystal Kelly. And the Shock signed PG Nikki Teasley earlier. Shock coach Rick Mahorn said both should see action tonight.
“I see two hungry teams,” Storm coach Brian Agler said.
Well, let’s get to the feast, then. Here are your starting lineups:
F Swin Cash
F Lauren Jackson
C Camille Little
G Tanisha Wright
G Sue Bird
F Katie Smith
F Taj McWilliams
C Cheryl Ford
G Alexis Hornbuckle
G Deanna Nolan
Tonight’s officials are Daryl Humphrey, Scott Twardoski, and June Courteau.