The Phoenix Mercury’s 78-72 road win against San Antonio in the Stars’ home opener included the drama of Kayla McBride’s return, but missed the anticipated showdown between WNBA legend Diana Taurasi and the top draft pick who grew up idolizing her, Kelsey Plum.
Plum, still recovering from an ankle injury, was featured in an article on ESPN this week, playfully throwing down the gauntlet. From the article:
“Plum grew up idolizing Connecticut great Diana Taurasi. She ordered a Taurasi poster and compiled a Huskies scrapbook. She recorded UConn’s championships on VHS. Now Plum, who sprained her ankle in an early May practice, says that when she makes it back to the court, there’s one person she can’t wait to score on: Diana Taurasi.
“‘I’m going to tell her too,’ she says. “Yes, I will.'”
The Summitt caught up with Plum just before the game Friday night to inquire about this promise to score on the three-time WNBA champion.
“Okay, I want to clear a few things up because that really got blown out of proportion. You know sometimes the media…they can spin things. I meant no disrespect to Diana,” said Plum.
“She is one of the greatest of all time and a really great person, and obviously I am not playing tonight,” Plum said as she pointed to her bandaged right ankle.
Plum went on to say of the friendly banter, “I think she is amazing, I grew up idolizing her and watching her game. She’s a great person. Obviously it is one of my dreams to be out there playing with the greatest, but we will have to wait and see.
“Of course I’d love to score in a game with her in it, that’s like the icing on the cake. To not bring your best to DT disrespects everything she stands for. So of course I want to play well, she’s the standard to measure against.”
The Summitt also caught up with Taurasi after the Mercury win to get her reaction on the rookie’s comments and her thoughts on Plum.
Watch the video here:
Mercury teammate Brittany Griner had shown Taurasi the article as they were boarding the plane to San Antonio the day before.
Plum gets another chance to go at her idol when San Antonio hosts Phoenix on July 7.