The WNBA released the names of the All-Star game reserves today and two big names were left of the list, which was selected by conference coaches: Candace Parker and Chamique Holdsclaw.
Marketing-wise I’m surprised at the omission of Parker (pictured right by AP) because it truly did seem national media didn’t realize the WNBA was happening until she returned from giving birth to her daughter in May. But, LA is not the team projected. And, as announcers have been pounding into our heads, Parker’s not the player that won the MVP and ROY awards last season.
And who would be? Well, Sheryl Swoopes was when she returned from giving birth to her son, but seriously, that type of freakish talent only happens once. Parker, 23, is working her way back and has the skill-set to be incredible, again, but will need time to regain her rhythm.
I figure she’ll be on the All-Star team anyway. Storm forward Lauren Jackson said she’s still leaning toward not playing in the game due to a left Achilles strain, but hasn’t talked to the WNBA about her decision.
“At the moment I’m about getting right and like I said, I just can’t see myself flying over there for that,” Jackson said. “I’m pretty sure they want their players to be right for the end of the season as well. I don’t expect it to be an issue.”
The third-leading vote-getter in fan balloting, I asked Jackson if she’d feel the same if the game were in Seattle. The WNBA has only held the All-Star game in the Western time zone once and it was a bust in Phoenix in 2000.
“I don’t think I would play, but I would go for sure,” Jackson said. “Swelling has been an issue in my foot. The season is too short to put yourself at risk. The fact that I can’t play now, it would be stupid.
“If it was KeyArena – wow – that would be amazing. I would have shot myself — no I’m joking. It would be the best thing ever. Maybe they should think about it.”