Women's Hoops Blog
Jayda Evans covers college and pro women's basketball. While its her first year on the Washington beat, she has covered the Storm since its inception. She'll offer observations, critiques, occasional off-beat tales and answers to select e-mail inquires. Evans also has written a book on the Storm and women's hoops, called "Game On!"
June 17, 2008 12:45 PM
Posted by Jayda Evans
The Storm is off today and here's hoping C Yolanda Griffith is getting all the rest she needs to never miss a game again. F Lauren Jackson obviously needs back-up or a sidekick or whatever you want to call Griffith inside and it's keeping the Storm (7-6) from being really effective.
Griffith's absence also highlights the team's need for post play. C Ashley Robinson had productive games in home wins against Detroit and Phoenix, blocking a combined four shots and doing some intangibles in her total 16 minutes of play. But whether due to the right Achilles injury or inconsistency, she's dropped off the past three games, playing a total of 16 minutes and not contributing anything.
Storm F Swin Cash is another frustrating conundrum. She started the season scoring in double figures in the opening six games, averaging 16.2 points. I figured after getting past the whole Detroit- Bill Laimbeer reunion mess -- where Cash was a combined 6 of 20 from the field in the home-and-home set -- she'd return to her normal self.
But Cash's tag of being a streaky player seemingly has followed her to Seattle. She's shooting 27.5 percent in her past five games for an average of 8.6 points. Not good. Especially since the Storm is 2-3 during the stretch and most of Cash's misses were late in games when the Storm rallied back, but can't get over the hump because of poor shooting and lax defense.
It's almost shocking that this team is nearly at .500 after starting the way it did. Some point to them playing the most games of any WNBA team, but that's a bunch of hooey. This is the pros and they aren't in any type of unusual grind that other teams aren't experiencing. Think LA whined when they opened the season with five road games? And Connecticut was in the midst of a five-game road trip. Seattle has only played quick back-to-backs.
Yes, the loss of Griffith is major. But possibly Laimbeer was right when he questioned how much quality Seattle would have in reserve when it put a lot of money in high-priced starters, three of which are returning from injury last season. It's still early, but the three-game losing streak is a trend the Storm needs to snap quick.