When the e-mail showed up in my inbox saying, “Storm signs Lewis,” I was perplexed for a minute. That’s because I remember the new Storm guard as first Doneeka Hodges, then Doneeka Hodges-Lewis. Apparently she’s dropped her family name (shared by her twin sister, Comets guard Roneeka) after being waived by the Sparks during training camp.
It seems some other people are perplexed as well, because they view Hodges-Lewis as a shooting guard, instead of a point guard like Shona Thorburn (who was not retained after her seven-day contract).
I suppose I understand why that is – Lewis played shooting guard at LSU and it may, in some sense, be her “natural” position. However, she basically exclusively played point guard her last two seasons in L.A. and generally played it awfully well.
Lest this be seen as revisionist history, I dug up the scouting report I wrote about Lewis prior to last year’s playoff series between the Storm and the Sparks:
PG DONEEKA LEWIS
Lewis might be the only Sparks player who misses departed Coach Henry Bibby. Bibby’s style emphasized spotting up on the perimeter for L.A.’s point guards, and that played perfectly to Lewis’ shooting ability, to the point where she was more effective than (Nikki) Teasley at times in 2005. This year, Lewis has had a more difficult time of it, seeing her three-point percentage plummet from 44.4% to 29.5%. Still, she’s a solid backup at the point despite converting from shooting guard – she played alongside (Temeka) Johnson for her final three years while at LSU – and doesn’t make a lot of mistakes. The Sparks don’t really see much drop-off when Lewis is at the point, and that’s a high compliment.
Lewis averaged 5.8 assists per 40 minutes last season. By comaprison, Sue Bird averaged 6.1. Ticha Penicheiro averaged 5.5 and Dawn Staley 5.2.