Storm star Lauren Jackson practices with WNBA stars, but won't play Saturday
Storm star Lauren Jackson, who suffered a concussion on July 3, has improved but won't play Saturday when a team of WNBA stars takes on the USA Basketball squad.
Seattle Times staff reporter
UNCASVILLE, Conn. — Storm star Lauren Jackson returned to the court on Friday, practicing with the WNBA Stars at Mohegan Sun Casino.
Jackson, voted to the WNBA lineup by fans, will not play in the game against USA Basketball on Saturday due to suffering a concussion on July 3. Jackson missed Seattle's win against New York on Tuesday and remains questionable for Wednesday's game in Phoenix.
"I'm so much better," said Jackson, who is still being evaluated. "I'm not symptomatic anymore. I was definitely beat up there for a minute, but life is good."
Because of the injury, Jackson doesn't have to concern herself with altering her personality for the game. Storm coach Brian Agler is coaching the WNBA Stars, telling the players before practice Friday that they need to take the matchup seriously.
Jackson, a seven-time All-Star, has popped three-pointers for the fun of it and been part of silly sideline antics in past traditional All-Star games.
"I was thinking to myself, 'Well, how would I have done that?' " Jackson said. "You spend so much energy preparing and getting ready for games, an All-Star game for me is so much easier to come and just enjoy the atmosphere."
Agler kept his only practice with his team light in comparison to USA Basketball coach Geno Auriemma. Despite being one of the most competitive coaches in the game, Agler stressed he's not going to "get caught up in trying to win the game."
"We know we're thrown together here with no preparation, playing against a team that's extremely talented," Agler said. "We want to put on a really good show and be competitive for them so they can get something out of it."
Agler held his normal half-court shooting contest after practice with the WNBA Stars, but the prize money dropped faster than money at the casino's poker tables. Indiana guard Katie Douglas nailed the shot and looked a little dejected at the $1 Agler gave her.
"A dollar?" she questioned as she left the court.
When the Storm plays the game, Agler awards at least $50.
Storm stars Sue Bird and Swin Cash will participate in the Three-Point Contest before the "Stars at the Sun" game, competing against Douglas, Monique Currie (Washington), Angel McCoughtry (Atlanta) and Lindsay Whalen (Minnesota).
Whalen and McCoughtry will also compete in The Skills Challenge over an obstacle course. Lindsey Harding (Washington), Cappie Pondexter (New York), Iziane Castro Marques (Atlanta) and Renee Montgomery (Connecticut) are also participating.
Hear me now?
Agler and Douglas will wear microphones for the WNBA Stars while Auriemma and Phoenix forward Diana Taurasi will be mic'd for sound for USA Basketball.
Jayda Evans: 206-464-2067 or email@example.com
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