The Storm will officially wrap up its 2010 preseason schedule Sunday at 11:00 a.m., facing the Tulsa Shock in the Shock’s first game at the BOK Center in Tulsa. For the Shock, this will apparently be a true dress rehearsal: Though the game will count like any other exhibition contest, it is closed to fans.
Storm Head Coach Brian Agler sees Sunday’s game as a learning experience. That’s true of the preseason in general, but this is a little different for another reason: Agler will be the first opposing coach to get a look at Nolan Richardson’s system during Richardson’s first season coaching in the women’s game.
“I’m sort of interested to see how Tulsa’s going to play,” said Agler, “because they’re the new kid on the block in terms of the unknown – the style of play they’re going to bring on the floor.”
Richardson has said that stamina may affect the fast pace he would like to play, but he is installing a pressure defense along the lines of the “40 Minutes of Hell” that won his Arkansas Razorbacks team the 1994 NCAA Championship.
The Shock also has made significant roster changes since moving from Detroit. Just five players are left on the roster from last year’s team. The Shock will be younger, but still has plenty of talent.
As far as evaluating his own players, Agler says everyone with the team – 14 players in all, with Le’coe Willingham and Tanisha Wright joining the team in Tulsa – will see action.
“We’ll be getting some of our returning people acclimated to playing together again – getting Le’coe in, getting T back,” said Agler.
There will be no radio or LiveAccess broadcast of Sunday’s game. That coverage will resume next Sunday on Opening Night. You can follow along with live stats via stormbasketball.com.
- Agler discussed the state of the team with Voice of the Storm Dick Fain during an interview Saturday morning on 950 KJR AM. Click here to listen to the interview, including some interesting updates on the process of building a final roster.
- Rookie Alison Lacey was scheduled to rejoin the Storm in Tulsa after missing Friday’s practice to attend her graduation from Iowa State University.
- On Monday, the Storm will host a second scrimmage against the Chinese National Team at the practice gym at the Royal Brougham Pavilion. The scrimmage is closed to fans but stormbasketball.com will have live updates.