Tuesday, April 08, 2008

It's Wonderful to be Wanted, but . . .

No doubt this is an anxious time for college senior basketball stars, including the Terps' own Crystal Langhorne and Laura Harper (not to mention their fans!), as they all wait to hear WNBA President Donna Orender step to the podium and announce "With the __th pick in the 2008 WNBA draft, the (insert WNBA team name here) select (insert player name here) from (insert college name here)." Until that moment when she hears her name and her college and learns the identity of her new team, the next phase of a star senior's basketball career is still a big unknown.

But the seniors won't have long to wait. The WNBA college draft will be held tomorrow, with the first of three rounds kicking off at 1 PM EDT live on ESPN2. The last two rounds will be shown on NBA-TV. If you are lucky enough to live in the D.C. area and can slip away from your job or home responsibilities at lunchtime (of course, if work is a problem, don't forget there's always the "loose filling" defense to explain your going AWOL from the office), you can join other fans at the Mystics' annual Draft Day Party, which begins at noon over at the Greene Turtle Restaurant next door to the Verizon Center. GM Linda Hargrove and the Mystics' coaching staff will be on hand to announce the team's picks. That's as "live" as it gets, unless you are lucky enough to have been invited by Dr. J to her golf resort in Palm Harbor, Florida, where the draft is actually being held. (The BasketCases' invitation must have gotten lost in the mail, so like most of you, we will be following the big day's action from right here in D.C.)

Fortunately, Lang's and Harp's invites did not get mis-delivered. Crystal and Laura are among the 20 top prospects the WNBA has invited to be on hand live at Dr. J's place to hear their names announced in person. It should come as no surprise to Maryland fans that several other familiar ACC players are among the 20 invitees. That list includes UNC's Erlana Larkins and LaToya Pringle, UVA's Sharnee Zoll, and the Wolfpack's Khadijah Wittington.

The BasketCases have been on pins and needles looking forward to this draft. After the great pleasure of watching Harp and Lang for four years at Maryland, we are most anxious to learn where they will begin their pro careers. And, of course, there's the question of who the Mystics will select. Could Harp or Lang end up in Mystics blue? Only time will tell!

Washington has the 6th pick in the first round, as well as the overall 20th and 34th picks. There's always the possibility the Mystics could announce a last-minute trade involving one or more of their picks; draft day is always a big unknown right up until the end! Probably the only thing that won't be a surprise on Wednesday is the Los Angeles Sparks' using their number 1 pick to take Candace Parker.

So stop by the Green Turtle (noon), or tune in to ESPN2 (1 PM) and follow the action . . . and all the surprises of WNBA Draft Day!


At 11:31 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Looking back at previous 6th picks,(Bernice Mosby, B. Lennox, Candace Dupree for example) I know we can get a fine player! And, it wouldn't hurt attendance-wise if that player was a former champion Lady Terp!! (Lang, Harp or Perry) but it will be exciting to see how it all plays out!

At 3:48 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Unfortunately we must address the point guard position in the 1st round. Another thought is to trade away the 2009 1st pick and address the post also in the 1st round!!! Let's see what happens.


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