Due to a few news stories breaking on Tuesday, including three-time silver medalist Lauren Jackson’s decision to miss the opening half of the 2012 season in order to prepare for the London Games, we opted to run a feature on WNBA president Laurel J. Richie next week.
But Richie was orally introduced on Tuesday via teleconference and several outlets ran some good reads on the veteran marketing executive. We’ll have more about how the Storm assisted in her becoming the new president and how that parlays into the business side of the team.
As for Jackson, here’s the version that ran in the newspaper Wednesday morning. I was able to speak with her before she caught a flight to Seattle, expecting to arrive Thursday. Jackson, who’ll celebrate her 30th birthday in Seattle, said it was a difficult decision to skip the opening half of the 2012 season. But in addition to needed training time to be competitive with the Opals national team on the court, the Australian Institute of Sport has done the best in treating her body.
“My longevity is better now than before I got injured,” she said of the time spent in Canberra with personal physicians after an Achilles tendon injury was discovered.
The Aussie still claims Seattle as home, “where I grew up.” It’s simply the thirst for Olympic gold runs too deep. In a collection big enough to fill a pending museum in native Albury, Jackson’s sole missing accolade is Olympic gold.
I’m sure we’ll have more in the year leading up to the Games, which will run from July 28-Aug. 11, 2012. Until then, enjoy these Richie stories.
— The Tulsa World makes note that Richie, who’s based in New York, has never attended a WNBA game.
— ESPN columnist Mechelle Voepel takes the attendance theme further by pointing out New York’s issues, including the upcoming move to New Jersey while the famed Madison Square Garden is under renovation.
— SwishAppeal.com also takes issue with Richie never attending a game, but sees the hiring more as shedding light on NBA commissioner David Stern’s plans for the WNBA.
— The Associated Press looks into how Storm CEO/President Karen Bryant piqued Richie’s interest in the WNBA position.
— Lastly, the transcript from the teleconference as provided by WNBA.com.