Hoisted by Her Own Petard

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A visual representation of Jenny Boucek turning in her KeyArena ID and Starbucks Rewards card at Storm HQ.

I started working on this before going to work Thursday afternoon, and while I was working, the Seattle Storm went ahead and fired Jenny Boucek, naming Gary Kloppenburg as the interim replacement.

As a result, this transformed from an another airing of grievances with the Storm’s direction into a treatise about what went wrong for Boucek.

During a 2017 season that has been disappointing in virtually every facet for the Seattle Storm, the team’s lack of offensive adventure is one of the most underwhelming aspects and arguably most justified Boucek’s firing. Continue reading

The Storm Kick the Can Down the Road

The Seattle Storm maintained the status quo through the WNBA trade deadline, failing to capitalize on their last opportunity reinvigorate what has been an underwhelming 2017 season.

One can understand general manager Alisha Valavanis’ desire to avoid being too reactionary following the team’s 10-13 start. Things are bad enough as is; making a shortsighted move would only compound matters.

At the same time, this past weekend demonstrated that something is fundamentally broken with the Storm. Continue reading

These are the Four Most Important Days of the Storm’s 2017 Season

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When you’re trying to make sense of the Storm’s last few days.

The Seattle Storm’s hopes of turning things around in the second half of the season may rest largely on the decision-making of Alisha Valavanis.

The 2017 season hasn’t gone according to plan at all for Seattle. The Storm are ninth in the WNBA with a 9-12 record, and many of the team’s biggest problems from last year have carried over to this season.

Still, few expected Thursday’s bombshell from The Summitt’s Howard Megdal that cast serious doubt on Jenny Boucek’s future with the team.

A vote of confidence from ownership and the front office is often an empty gesture that is eventually undercut by the team’s actions at a later point. With that said, Valavanis didn’t even bother to offer the bare minimum regarding whether management was behind Boucek.

“I would say that I am working closely with our head coach on how we can recalibrate, how we can do everything possible to make a playoff run,” she said to Megdal. “That’s how I feel, and that’s where we’re at. I’m actively working with Jenny to see if we can make any adjustments to calibrate this for a playoff run, which has been set as a very clear goal.”

Short of having security physically carry Boucek out of the office, it’s hard to imagine a more damning response from Valavanis. Continue reading

Should Jenny Boucek Be on the Hot Seat?

Screen Shot 2017-07-25 at 12.08.08 PMJenny Boucek isn’t running for elected office, but Seattle Storm fans may need to start asking the question, are the Storm better off than they were four years ago?

When Boucek replaced Brian Agler in January 2015, the Storm were in need of a rebuild. They finished the 2014 season with a 12-22 record and had been trending downward since winning a title in 2010.

With two of the top three picks in the 2015 draft, Seattle selected Jewell Loyd and Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis to serve as cornerstones for the rebuilding effort. The Storm proceeded to finish with the second-worst record in the league that season (10-24). The draft was again a source of hope for Seattle since it meant having the opportunity to bring Breanna Stewart aboard. Continue reading