Phoenix, AZ (PRWEB) April 29, 2004 - Behind the Scenes - WNBA Phoenix Mercury Media Day -
Diana Taurasi made her WNBA debut on Monday as the Phoenix Mercury threw their annual preseason Media Day on the practice court of the America West Arena.
Everything was typical. The players showed up in uniform to take their team photos. The photographers and the reporters mingled and asked a few questions to players here and there. And then, Taurasi made her entrance. You could instantly feel her presence. The crowd flocked to her like a gallery following Tiger Woods. Call her what you will - the new Lebron James, the female Jordan - anything Phoenix Mercury, anything WNBA IS Diana Taurasi.
Either way, Taurasi takes it all in stride. She's joining a team that finished last place in 2003 and will have to fight hard to make the playoffs this season. When asked if she felt the pressure of carrying a team on her shoulders she passed it off humbly pointing out that she's still just a rookie and not aiming for a coup. "As training camp moves along and we get more comfortable with each other, I think that's where were going to improve the most."
Underneath her new Nike shoes with the little "3"s on the side and "Dee"s on the tongue, Taurasi is getting used to the little things too. She's new to the Phoenix area. She's hardly had time to find her way around, saying, "I drove around a little bit the other day to get familiar with the Walmart...I'm just excited there's a restaurant within 30 miles" - a joke about her days at UCONN.
It's hard to get a read on whether the rest of the Mercury enjoy the limelight on Taurasi. Rookies Erika Valek and Shereka Wright are just excited about being on the team and getting ready for play. Both team leaders from Purdue, Valek and Wright are at the top of their game and confident. "We're all relaxed. We know what to expect," says Valek. In support, Wright says, "You have to come in here, show what you've got and stay confident."
As they sit around waiting for practice to start, the Taurasi photoshoot in the background appears to be the least of their worries. They came to play.
Jonathan Pettingill is a staff writer for Women's Sports Net. WomensSportsNet.com launched March 1st, 2004 to increase the visibility of Women and Girls in Sports. The website WomensSportsNet.com incorporates up-to-the-minute news and original content for sports, fitness, diet, health and lifestyles and can be found at: http://www.womenssportsnet.com
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