Kelsey Plum returns to Seattle after rough start as a proJune 16, 2017 5:37pm

SEATTLE (AP) — Kelsey Plum set such a high standard during her college career that achieving immediate success at the same level as a professional was going to be challenging.

Throw in a severely sprained ankle that kept Plum out of the San Antonio Stars lineup for nearly a month and the pro career for the greatest scorer in NCAA women's basketball history hasn't gotten off to the start many expected.

"It's been difficult to try and get back, and not even to get back but play at the level I'm capable at," Plum said in a recent phone interview. "It's a tough shift regardless for rookies so it's been an experience for me that is going to help me in the long run. For now, it's not easy."

Plum returns to her college town this weekend when San Antonio faces the Storm. Seattle is where Plum became the NCAA's all-time leading scorer, leading Washington to three straight NCAA Tournament appearances and a Final Four.

It will be Plum's first trip back since she was drafted No. 1 overall by the Stars. But it comes with Plum struggling on the court, something she rarely experienced during her college career.

"It's definitely frustrating at times because I'm not moving the way I usually do. That change of speed is how I create things for me and my teammates so it's frustrating," Plum said. "Percentage-wise? Let's just say not 100. At the end of the day, I'm playing and it's not an excuse for how I'm playing."

Plum injured her right ankle in early May. It's her first major injury since a knee issue during her sophomore year at Washington that she was able to play through while wearing a brace.

Plum has appeared in only seven games, never playing more than 28 minutes or scoring more than eight points. Last Sunday against Chicago, Plum was 0-for-4 shooting in 12 minutes and went scoreless. Thursday's loss to Los Angeles was even worse. Plum played just five minutes and went scoreless. Plum scored at least 20 points in every college game during her senior season.

She's also adjusting to a different role with the Stars. The entire offense isn't being run through Plum, as it was at Washington.

"I would think of it as at (Washington) every possession, every single time down the floor, I was called upon to score or create for my teammates," she said. "This is different because now I'm running offense, and yeah I do look to score and create, but it's not the 100 percent ball goes through me. I have a lot of teammates that can create and do things. My workload is a lot different here."

Plum is confident her scoring prowess will eventually show up in the pros. She recalled a recent conversation with former WNBA star and current San Antonio Spurs assistant coach Becky Hammon where it became clear to Plum how early she is in her career.

"She said, 'You've probably played 100 games in your career like in college, and these women have played like 800,'" Plum said. "Just everyone is so much smarter. In college a lot of times I would read the play and just outsmart people. It's different here because I'm trying to think while still somewhat limited. It's frustrating, but it's life."

Page 1 of 1

More Stories Like This

Study: Most of women's college coaches are white and maleOn 45th anniversary of Title IX, a 'damning' report on hiring of coaches in women's college sports
FILE - In this June 7, 2017 file photo, New York Liberty guard Shavonte Zellous (1) gestures in the second half of an WNBA basketball game against the Atlanta Dream in New York. Zellous is thrilled that the New York Liberty will have a float in Sunday's pride parade, the first for a sports franchise in the city. "I'm excited. I haven't been in a pride parade before, so I think I'm more excited than most," said Zellous, a guard who wore rainbow-colored shoes Friday night, June 23 for the Liberty’s pride game. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens, File)
Liberty to have a float in New York pride parade
FILE - In this Jan. 11, 2017, file photo, former NBA player and players union deputy Roger Mason, left, listens as entertainer Ice Cube, right, announces the launch of the BIG3, a new 3-on-3 professional basketball league, in New York. For his league of former NBA players that debuts Sunday, the actor-entertainer insisted the competition be serious, a proper representation of a form of basketball that's so popular that it's ticketed for the next Olympics. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews, File)
Ice Cube has big expectations for his Big3 3-on-3 league
Philadelphia 76ers' draft pick Markelle Fultz poses after a news conference at the team's NBA basketball training complex, Friday, June 23, 2017, in Camden, NJ. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)
It's time for No. 1 pick Fultz to turn 76ers into winners
Former NBA player Marcus Camby sued over nephew's drowningFormer NBA player Marcus Camby has been named defendant in a wrongful death lawsuit over the drowning of his 9-year-old autistic nephew in a pond on Camby's Houston-area property last Thanksgiving
FILE - In this Feb. 8, 2017, file photo, former New York Knicks player Charles Oakley, rear left, exchanges words with a security guard during the first half of an NBA basketball game between the Knicks and the Los Angeles Clippers in New York. Former tennis player John McEnroe was just feet away when Oakley was arrested during the game last season. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II, File)
Frustrated fan: McEnroe says Knicks a 'total train wreck'
This component is currently unavailable.
AdChoices

Related Searches

Related Searches

AdChoices