NEW YORK, NY – July 5, 2011 – The New York Liberty have signed forward Felicia Chester and waived guard Jessica Breland, it was announced today by Head Coach and General Manager John Whisenant.
Chester was the 15th overall selection in the 2011 WNBA Draft by the Minnesota Lynx and immediately traded to the Atlanta Dream on draft day. She spent training camp with the Dream before being waived.
Chester, a 6-3 forward from DePaul finished her college career averaging 8.3 points, 5.5 rebounds, and 1.1 assists over 132 games. The St. Louis, MO native was given All-BIG EAST Honorable Mention for the 2010-11 season.
Breland, a 6-3 guard, was selected 14th in the 2011 WNBA draft by Minnesota and acquired by the Liberty in a draft day trade for No. 22 pick Angel Robinson from Marquette, along with the Liberty’s 2012 second round pick. She appeared in nine games for the Liberty, averaging 7.7 minutes per game.
Chester’s first game with the Liberty will be in San Antonio in a rematch against the Silver Stars after the Liberty’s 81-75 win at the Prudential Center on Friday night. The Liberty will return to Newark on Sunday to take on the Chicago Sky at 4:00pm.
Shock Signs Former Finals MVP Betty Lennox
The Tulsa Shock have signed former WNBA Champion and Finals MVP, Betty Lennox.
Lennox led the Seattle Storm to a WNBA Title in 2004, averaging 14.6 points, 3.6 rebounds, 2.6 assists and 1.0 steals per game en route to being named the Finals MVP. Originally drafted by the Minnesota Lynx in 2000, Lennox was named the Rookie of the Year, made the All-Star team and was All-WNBA Second Team in just her first year in the league.
“I’m very happy that we were able to sign Betty. She is a ‘been there done that player’ in that she has won in this league before,” General Manager and Head Coach Nolan Richardson said. “She brings veteran leadership and the experience factor and is a person who can score the basketball by playing both the point and off-guard position for us.”
Lennox appeared in 11 games for the Sparks in 2010 before suffering a knee injury that caused her to miss the remainder of the season.
“I’m happy that Coach Richardson gave me an opportunity. I’m thankful and grateful for the opportunity,” Lennox said. “I’m from Oklahoma, my family is a couple hours away so I’m excited to start a new journey with a new team. God has blessed me to be on several different teams and now it’s an opportunity to have my family come and watch me play.”
Lennox had her best season in 2008 when she averaged 17.5 points and 4.2 rebounds while starting 33 of the 34 regular season games for the expansion Atlanta Dream. She brings career averages of 12.3 points, 4.1 rebounds, 2.1 assists and 1.0 steal to the Shock this season.
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Lennox was born in Oklahoma City and played college basketball at Louisiana Tech. She is entering her 11th season in the WNBA.
“I think I can bring to this team, what I pretty much about brought to all other teams – leadership, energy, hard work and just a fierce competitiveness,” Lennox said. “It’s what I’ve brought my entire career. I’m going to bring what I have and do the best that I can under Coach Ricahrdson and his system and just be one of the leaders that he has been looking for.”
Mistie Bass to Miss 2011 Season to Concentrate on Family
Bass, a five-year WNBA veteran, started 20 games for the Sky in 2010 and averaged 18.9 minutes, 4.9 points, 3.9 rebounds and 1.1 assists per game during the campaign.
“All my life I have devoted my time, energy, and passion into basketball,” said Bass. “It has allowed me to play in places I only dreamed about as a child, and the WNBA is a dream that I have been living for five seasons.
“The league has afforded me a tremendous opportunity to play with the best of the best while inspiring younger women to pursue their own goals and achievements. Over the past season, however, I felt something was missing from my life, and that was family. I respect the WNBA, the Chicago Sky, and all the fans too much to play while my heart is in another place.”
The Sky acquired Bass, a Duke graduate, as a free agent in August 2009 after she played for three seasons with the Houston Comets.
story courtesy of Chicago Sky
SAN ANTONIO – San Antonio Silver Stars General Manager and Head Coach Dan Hughes announced today that former Silver Stars guard and two-time WNBA All-Star Vickie Johnson has been named an assistant coach.
Johnson returns to San Antonio to take on her first coaching job after retiring from a 13-year WNBA career following the 2009 season. She finished her career (1997-2009) ranked as the league’s all-time leader in games (410) and minutes played (12,435).
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JOE BRYANT and SANDY BRONDELLO Join Sparks’ Coaching Staff
The Los Angeles Sparks have completed their 2011 coaching staff with the hiring of Joe “Jellybean” Bryant and Sandy Brondello as assistant coaches, it was announced today.
Bryant, who previously served as Sparks’ head coach from late-2005 through the 2006 season, and Brondello – bringing six years of experience from the San Antonio Silver Stars’ staff – will work alongside second-year head coach Jennifer Gillom. Combined, the trio boasts over a decade of WNBA coaching experience, while all three have also played basketball at the highest level.
SILVER STARS SIGN BEVILAQUA
SAN ANTONIO (March 7, 2011) – The San Antonio Silver Stars today announced the signing of veteran guard Tully Bevilaqua. Per team policy, terms of the contract were not disclosed.
Bevilaqua, a 5-foot-7 guard from Australia, spent the last six seasons with the Indiana Fever where she averaged 5.7 points, 2.2 rebounds and 2.4 assists in 197 career games with the Fever from 2005-10. She is a six-time WNBA All-Defensive Team member, most recently named to the 2010 All-Defensive Team while with Indiana. Bevilaqua enters her 13th WNBA season ranked fourth among WNBA career steal leaders (542).
“We are delighted that Swin has decided to continue her career with the Storm, and we know that our fans feel the same way,” Agler said. “She is an outstanding player and team leader, and we appreciate all that she does to contribute to our success.”
“Swin Cash is a stellar representative of this franchise both on and off the court,” added Karen Bryant, the Storm’s president and CEO. “She was an integral part of last season’s record-breaking Storm team, and we are thrilled that she will continue her professional career in Seattle.”
Cash, a 6-1 forward, has averaged 12.8 points, 5.9 rebounds and 2.8 assists during her nine-year WNBA career. The second overall pick in the 2002 WNBA Draft out of Connecticut behind Sue Bird, Cash averaged 13.8 points, six rebounds and two assists in 34during the 2010 regular season for the Storm. A member of the WNBA champion Detroit Shock teams in 2003 and 2006, Cash averaged 16.1 points, 4.9 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 1.3 steals per game during the Storm’s undefeated 2010 playoff run that culminated in her third WNBA championship and the second for the Storm.
“I am honored to continue playing in front of the WNBA’s best fans,” said Cash. “I’m blessed to have wonderful teammates, committed coaches and a supportive organization in Seattle. I look forward to the 2011 season and beyond.”
The Storm acquired the three-time WNBA champion and four-time WNBA All-Star from the Shock in exchange for the No. 4 pick in the 2008 WNBA Draft. After battling back problems during her first season in Seattle, Cash underwent surgery and returned with a strong 2009 campaign, highlighted by a record 22 points in the All-Star Game that earned her MVP honors.
A member of the 2004 Olympic gold-medal-winning USA women’s basketball team, Cash also was a two-time NCAA Champion in 2000 and 2002 at the University of Connecticut, and was named as a Kodak All-American First Team member in 2002.
Cash and her Storm teammates will open the WNBA season with a nationally televised game on ABC on Saturday, June 4 in a 12 noon matchup against the Phoenix Mercury at KeyArena.
courtesy Seattle Storm PR
LYNX SIGN McWILLIAMS-FRANKLIN
The Minnesota Lynx on Friday announced the team has signed veteran free-agent center Taj McWilliams-Franklin.
McWilliams-Franklin, a six-time WNBA All-Star, joins the Lynx after spending parts of 11 WNBA seasons with five different teams, including Connecticut, Los Angeles, Washington, Detroit and most recently, New York. In 373 career games, 370 starts, the El Paso, Texas native holds career averages of 11.9 points, 7.1 rebounds, 1.4 steals and 1.0 blocked shots in 31.4 minutes per game. The 6-2 center is entrenched in the WNBA record books, ranking 2nd all-time – 1st among all active players – in total rebounds (2,631), 7th all-time in field goals made (1,747), 7th all-time in total steals (511), 7th all-time in total blocked shots (373) and 12th all-time – 10th among all active players – in total points scored (4,456). One of the most consistent players in the WNBA over the last decade, McWilliams-Franklin has averaged over 10.0 points per game in all but two of her years in the league (2002, 2009) and has shot over 47.0 percent from the floor in all but one season (2003 – .442 percent). In 34 games, all starts, With the Liberty in 2010, McWilliams-Franklin averaged 10.6 points and 5.4 rebounds per game in leading New York to the Eastern Conference Finals.
The Tulsa Shock re-signed Marion Jones.
The Connecticut Sun signed Danielle McCray.
The Indiana Fever signed Shannon Bobbitt to a training camp contract.
LA TRADES RILEY, SIGNS MOORE & HOFFMAN; TANGELA JOINS INDY…AND MORE
2011 WNBA Transactions
One day after re-signing free-agent point guard Ticha Penicheiro, the Sparks signed Loree Moore, giving the team “one of the best point guard tandems in the league,” according to General Manager Penny Toler.
Moore averaged six points, 3.7 assists and 3.5 rebounds from 2005-09 with the New York Liberty and was a 2007 WNBA all-defensive second-team selection. She was cut by the Liberty last spring and signed with the Seattle Storm for the 2010 season but was released after tearing her left meniscus two weeks into training camp.
The 5-foot-9 guard is from Los Angeles and played alongside Sparks recent signee Ebony Hoffman in high school, leading Harbor City Narbonne to a California state championship in 2000.
The Indiana Fever signed Tangela Smith
The Seattle Storm re-signed Camille Little
The Los Angeles Sparks signed Ebony Hoffman, Natasha Lacy, Ticha Penicheiro, LaToya Pringle and Noelle Quinn
The San Antonio Silver Stars signed Shanavia Dowdell and Ashley Walker
The Los Angeles Sparks traded Andrea Riley to the Tulsa Shock in exchange for Tulsa’s 2012 second round draft pick.
The Minnesota Lynx signed Jessica Adair.
MYSTICS CURRIE LIKELY OUT FOR SEASON
Washington Mystics General Manager & Head Coach Trudi Lacey announced that forward Monique Currie will most likely miss the upcoming WNBA season following surgery to repair a torn anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in her left knee. Currie suffered the injury while playing in Turkey during the WNBA off-season. She returned to the States and consulted with team doctors and following a rehabilitation protocol, it was determined that surgery was the best course of action. Rehabilitation for ACL injuries are expected to take up to nine months. The surgery was performed by team doctor J.R. Rudzki at Sibley Memorial Hospital.“It is unfortunate that we won’t have Monique for the 2011 season, although she probably will not return to the court, her leadership and knowledge of the game will continue to benefit our team,” said Lacey. “I am confident that our team will work hard and stay together to make the upcoming year the best possible.”
Currie was acquired by the Mystics in 2007 following a trade with the Chicago Sky. Last season, she averaged 14.1 points per game and 4.8 rebounds per game. Currie also led the team in three point field goal percentage (.446).
“I am extremely grateful for and appreciate the support of the fans and look forward to returning to the court,” said Currie.
The Mystics played all of last season without all-star guard Alan Beard, who underwent arthroscopic surgery to repair tendon damage of her left ankle, but is now healthy and will return to the court this season.
Video: Alana Beard Rehabbing In San Francisco