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My days leading up to the draft were spent with 11 other rookies going to meetings to help ease the transition into the professional sports world. Rookie orientation was only three days long and as you can imagine, there is a lot of information that can be helpful in preparing to enter the WNBA. So, because of the short time period, we had to fit a lot of meetings into those three days. Because I was so busy focusing on the tips and information I was being presented with, I barely had time to focus on the fact that I was just days away from one I had dreamt of for as long as I could remember. Playing professional basketball was a lifelong dream and I was lucky enough that, due to the fact that the league existed for most of my life, this was a realistic dream.
|From left, Phoenix Mercury's Brittney Griner, Chicago Sky's Elena Delle Donne and Tulsa Shock's Skylar Diggins did a media tour in New York City after the WNBA draft last Monday.|
When I woke up on the morning of the draft we immediately headed over to the ESPN campus to go through a media circuit, get into hair and makeup, and prepare for the draft! For the early part of the day there was nothing but excitement and high energy surrounding all of the draftees. It was just as I was preparing to go onto "SportsCenter" that we heard about the tragic events in Boston at the marathon. At that point the mood shifted to shock and sadness. Again because this tragic event occurred, I was not competently focused on my impending draft.
Around 5, I had the chance to see my family, take some pictures and relax a little bit. It was incredible to be able to have my family with me on one of the most memorable days of my entire life. Around 7, we were told to enter the draft room. At this point, I was 1 hour from hearing where I would begin my professional career. As I sat in that room it all started to hit me ... all the work that I had put in, the years devoted to my sport, and the often difficult decisions that came along with basketball were culminating into this incredible event.
When I heard [WNBA president] Laurel Richie announce that I had been selected by the Chicago sky, I was overwhelmed. Not only had I reached my lifelong dream but I had been given the amazing opportunity to do so in Chicago, the city that was my first choice to play in. After a huge sigh of relief I walked on stage and held up that Sky blue jersey. I was filled with pride and excitement. I was and still am overwhelmingly excited to get to Chicago and get on the court with my teammates.
For the two days following the draft I went to New York City with Skylar [Diggins] and Brittney [Griner] to do a media tour at various media outlets. Although all three of us were completely exhausted, I had a truly amazing experience spending time with those girls and getting to know them better. I even had the chance to get a makeover by an E! News glam squad with Skylar. The days surrounding the draft were full of excitement and high energy and I really enjoyed myself. But now ... I'm ready to get to Chicago, pull on that Sky jersey and hit the court with my team!!! GO SKY!