Women’s basketball notebook — Must-click women’s basketball links — Coquese Washington talks Rutgers

The IX: Basketball Wednesday with Howard Megdal, Aug. 31, 2022

Some thoughts, stream-of-consciousness, around the women’s basketball world as we transition from a WNBA playoffs that looks set to provide a conclusion for the ages to a college season with an incredible number of storylines ahead…

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…The Indiana Fever made the decision Wednesday to move on from Carlos Knox. Whoever else is involved here, Lin Dunn must talk to Latricia Trammell and Brandi Poole if she wants to find the coaches and people best-prepared to help her young roster improve. Trammell, in particular, is a defensive guru ready to help the Fever surmount its most difficult limitation of the past few years, and Poole’s success under Curt Miller is undeniable…

…A’ja Wilson scored just eight points in Game 1, but the bigger stat to me was seeing her get only 10 shots. Game 2s that follow disappointing Game 1s are when we often see stars make the leap (see Jonquel Jones, 2019 WNBA Finals). It will be fascinating to see how Wilson does it here…

…Wilson was named WNBA Defensive Player of the Year. It was a close, three-way vote between Wilson, Alyssa Thomas and Breanna Stewart, the latter my choice after much agonizing. I can see the argument for any of the three. The part of WNBA Twitter that not only disagrees, but pretends that an ultimately subjective award without clear public metrics to measure proficiency can have only one answer is declaring itself unworthy of being taken seriously.

I remember several years ago, in the midst of my DPOY deliberations, having two coaches, specifically tasked with breaking down video for top-four WNBA teams, come to polar opposite conclusions about the defensive value of a well-known contender for the award. The level of certainty about this in some corners, well, it is laughable…

…are we still asking whether Curt Miller’s tenure in Connecticut is a success? Is that seriously being debated? I don’t know, you guys, I don’t understand the debates sometimes. Anyhow, a title would probably end that discussion — much as, though it was equally silly, it did for Candace Parker back in Los Angeles. And the more important part: we’ll finally find out where the Connecticut Sun would hold a victory parade. My money’s on the indoor mall portion of Mohegan Sun…

…don’t expect Glen Taylor to allow the Lynx to enter a period of financial uncertainty should Alex Rodriguez fail to come up with the money to complete his purchase of the team (and, yes, the other team, the Timberwolves as well)…

…good to see the Rangers add pitching.

This week in women’s basketball

Sue Bird fans are intense.
Izzy Harrison’s story is amazing.
Elena Delle Donne’s father is her shooting coach.
Don’t miss this AD documentary.
Great stuff on WNBA international players from Jenn Hatfield and Calvin Wetzel.
We lost an absolute legend (and our Addie Parker lost her aunt). May her memory be a blessing.

Five at The IX: Coquese Washington, Rutgers head coach

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By: Annie Peterson, @AnnieMPeterson, AP Women’s Soccer
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By: Joey Dillon, @JoeyDillon, Freelance Tennis Writer
Wednesdays: Basketball
By: Howard Megdal, @HowardMegdal, The Next
Thursdays: Golf
By: Addie Parker, @addie_parker, The IX
Fridays: Hockey
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Saturdays: Gymnastics
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Written by Howard Megdal

Howard is the founder of The Next and editor-in-chief.