In order to understand the 2012 Seattle Storm, you have to look deeper than the team’s 1-5 record. The circumstances in which the team is being forced to begin its season are less than ideal, but looking at the big picture, Storm fans should not be hitting the panic button just yet.
It would be unfair to judge the Storm based on the record.
The Storm have played six games so far this season, four of them on the road and five against either the L.A. Sparks and the defending WNBA champion Minnesota Lynx (who look even more unbeatable then last year at 8-0).
While playing this tough early season schedule, the Storm is also without the services of three-time WNBA MVP Lauren Jackson, who will be with the Australian National team until after this year’s Summer Olympics.
Head Coach Brian Agler and his staff did a stand-up job making several key additions in the offseason to fill the void left by Jackson.
Bring in the Vets
They added some veteran talent, acquiring the leading scorer in WNBA history in Tina Thompson, as well as Ann Wauters, who has been one of the team’s most consistent scorers early in the season.
Agler also added some youth to the team by drafting University of Tennessee standout Shekinna Stricklen with the second overall pick as well as picking up second-year forward Victoria Dunlap in a trade with the Washington Mystics.
But perhaps the most important signing that Agler made this off season was re-signing veteran point guard Sue Bird, who is now entering the 11th season of her prolific WNBA career.
The Storm can hardly wait for the Olympics to wrap up for several reasons. This is when the team will get Jackson back, who will be sure to add to the Storm’s average of 65.7 ppg.
As well the Storm will begin a backloaded home schedule that will see the team play the entire month of August at home at KeyArena.
By the dog days of summer, we could be looking at a completely different Seattle Storm team.
Players are still working through the growing pains that come with adding several new players to a roster with limited time to practice in training camp.
Give them time to work out the kinks and add Jackson to the mix and the Storm will be able to match up with any team.
10 of the last 15 games are at home for the Storm, which is 33-3 at home since the beginning of the 2010 season.
Take all of these factors into account and you could be looking at one of the toughest teams to beat by the end of the 2012 season.