March is Women’s History Month and “March Madness” for the NCAA. Therefore, it is only befitting that this article include two quotes by people whom know and understand what life is about; conquering adversity, defying the odds, and the importance of perseverance and determination .
“Obstacles don’t have to stop you. If you run into a wall, don’t turn around and give up. Figure out how to climb it, go through it, or work around it.” – Michael Jordan
“What I know is, is that if you do work that you love, and the work fulfills you, the rest will come. – Oprah Winfrey.
The 2010 WNBA draft comprises women who did not give up on their quest to be the best. Many of the ladies decided to realign and readjust how they play the game of basketball. They learned how to overcome obstacles and become the best. The women featured in the next series of articles exemplify perseverance, determination, and hard work along with character.
UConn continues to develop the best talent in the WNBA. Over the last decade, UConn has sent 22 players to the WNBA. Presently, there are nine active players within the league. They are looking to add two more this year; Tina Charles and Kalana Greene.
Tina Charles is a beast offensively and defensively and she will make an immediate impact in the WNBA. She has the skills, size, quickness, strength, and confidence, which will make her a very exciting player to watch. Tina has experienced many ups and downs while playing under coach Geno Auriemma at UConn. Initially, Tina wasn’t considered a dominating post player or a threat to her opponents – she had the size, but lacked the mentality and intensity. Tina Charles had to overcome mental hurdles to play as her coach demanded. During the 2008 NCAA tournament, Tina was benched by her coach, but she didn’t let this experience stop her from becoming a great player. Instead, Tina Charles became the all time leading scorer at UConn. This year, Tina surpassed Nykesha Sales’ career scoring record and Rebecca Lobo’s career rebounding record. If you think knocking down two big records achieved by former UConn stars and WNBA players is impressive, “And One”, Tina Charles will graduate from the University of Connecticut with honors.
Tina Charles will most likely be the number one draft selection of the 2010 WNBA Draft. The Connecticut Sun has obtained the number one draft spot during the first round. It appears Tina Charles will not be too far away from fans in Connecticut and family in Jamaica, New York.
As previously stated, Tina Charles will not be the only UConn player in the 2010 WNBA Draft. Kalana Greene will be alongside her teammate on April 8th. Kalana had the option to enter the 2009 WNBA draft with fellow teammate Renee Montgomery. Unfortunately, Kalana injured her ACL during the 2007-2008 seasons, and she decided to return to UConn as a fifth year senior. Kalana knew she needed to work on more of her skills, such as consistency and ball handling, as well as maturity and leadership before playing basketball on a professional level. Kalana went through one year of rehabilitation and the next year it was all about focusing on rebuilding her physical strength and skills. Kalana’s choices have paid off for her. She might not be drafted as high as Tina Charles, but she will be a force to be reckoned with in the WNBA. The experience and growth Kalana Greene achieved during the last couple of years will support any organization’s success within the WNBA.