More on the draft


Cooper admitted that GM Toler might only be getting warmed up in terms of personnel moves–that’s what she does–and Toler herself went out of her way in making it clear that the WNBA season was a long way off and that the Sparks lineup could change dramatically by the time the team takes the floor in June.

Toler revealed at length a player acquisition philosophy that went beyond just this year’s draft. If you can’t get what you want in terms of filling a particular need, she in essence said, you pick for talent: what other teams are likely to need. Then you prepare to make deals.

The big deal that Toler is looking to make this time is for 2004 WNBA Finals MVP Betty Lennox and she’s confident in the Sparks chances of bringing Betty-Ball to the Staples Center. “We’re in the Betty Lennox sweepstakes and she’s said we’re at the top of her list. I think you’re going to see something happen there in the next few days.”

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And here’s a perspective check – and a great one, too:

Maybe the best moment of the draft on Thursday came when Rebecca Lobo, a league pioneer, interviewed Marissa Coleman, who was the second pick overall. Coleman said she grew up “idolizing Diana Taurasi.”

Taurasi, 26, really isn’t that old. But she’s been around long enough for today’s rookies to “idolize.” That would never have happened had the WNBA folded. Or had never been born.

Maybe to some people, that’s insignificant. But if you’re a young female athlete with some hopes and dreams, it only means everything.

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Finally, here’s a great Q and A with Courtney Paris:

What is your message to Monarchs fans?

“I’m so excited to be back in California. I’m so excited to play for Monarchs fans. You should know I’m 100 percent committed to getting my body ready, getting my mind ready and I’m excited to help the Monarchs win! Hopefully, I can make an impact on the team.”

You’ll be fine, sweetie.