Friday, July 28, 2006

Carey Makes More Opportunities

Looking back, it seems like a pretty dumb question considering Jamie Carey has played at least 11 minutes in six of the last seven games.
But in the last week before the All-Star break, I was talking with Carey before a game regarding Jen Derevjanik’s return to Connecticut as a member of the Phoenix Mercury. Carey and Derevjanik were perceived to be in a tight race for one of Mike Thibault’s final roster spots, with Carey making the cut and Derevjanik being waived.
I asked Carey if there were moments when maybe she thought about what it would be like to play for another team. Derevjanik wasn’t going to get much playing time by making the Sun but was getting her chances in Phoenix, a scenario Carey would have likely found herself in had she been the one cut and subsequently signed by another club.
As the Sun were preparing for their final game of the season’s first half on July 8, Carey had yet to play more than nine minutes in any game and eight times didn’t make an appearance.
“This is a championship caliber team and that is fun to be a part of ever day,” she said at the time. “In practice and games, Coach T’s one of the best coaches I’ve played for. And to be able to play under him is a privilege and it’s just a fantastic organization here. So really there’s nothing to complain about.”
The game with the Mercury ended up being Nykesha Sales’ first of now eight, including tonight, out with an injury and Carey promptly played 20 minutes. Including that first game, Carey’s scored 21 points during this stretch, compared to just seven over the first 18 games.
Carey figures to see more minutes as long as Erin Phillips continues to start alongside Lindsay Whalen. In this new lineup, Carey becomes the first guard option off the bench, an opportunity she’s making the most of.


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