Inside the Phoenix Mercury's Post Game Press Conference

May 30, 2024

Last night, the Phoenix Mercury clashed with the New York Liberty in a much-anticipated WNBA game.

After the final buzzer, we had the chance to sit in on the post-game press conference with head coach Nate Tibbetts and star players Kahleah Copper and Natasha Cloud. Here’s the story of their night, filled with determination and hope.

Coach Nate Tibbetts: Crafting a Vision
Coach Nate Tibbetts, still adjusting to his new role, shared his vision for the team. With Diana Taurasi sidelined by injury, he stressed the need to see the “big picture.” He recalled, “When I got the job, Diana was working hard in the offseason. Her injury felt like the rug was pulled out from under her. But she’s determined to come back stronger.”

Tibbetts introduced a new strategy, emphasizing high-percentage shots and cautioning against shots from what he calls the "manure strip"—16 feet to the three-point line. Despite recent setbacks, he remains optimistic. “We aim to improve by the 10 and 20-game marks,” he said. “It’s a new team, and we’re growing.”

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Kahleah Copper: Embracing the Challenge
Kahleah Copper spoke about the team's current struggles and her excitement for Brittney Griner’s return. “We just have to play through these close losses and keep looking forward,” she said. Copper also praised her chemistry with Natasha Cloud, saying, “I love playing with Tasha. Everyone's competitive and values team chemistry.”

Her love for Philadelphia shone through as she shared, “I’d love to play in Philly. The city's history is incredible.” Her dedication to the team and its future is evident.

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Natasha Cloud: Leading with Resilience
Natasha Cloud provided a heartfelt perspective on their tough schedule. “We’re in the thick of it with eight straight games, but we’re pushing through,” she said. Cloud praised Copper’s growth, calling them the “head of the snake” for their leadership roles on offense and defense.

Cloud also highlighted the need for better scheduling to prevent injuries and ensure rest. “The schedule is crazy. The league needs to fix this because people are getting hurt and not sleeping,” she emphasized. She underscored the sisterhood within the league, countering the narrative that players hate each other. “It’s all competitiveness. The entire W is a sisterhood.”

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A Night of Mixed Emotions
The press conference showcased the Phoenix Mercury's resilience. Despite the challenges, Coach Tibbetts, Copper, and Cloud expressed pride in their performance and a commitment to growth.

They are confident that with time, the Mercury will become a formidable force in the WNBA.

As fans look ahead, they can expect to see a more cohesive and competitive squad, driven by a shared vision and unwavering support for one another. The Phoenix Mercury’s spirit and determination promise brighter days ahead.