With the conclusion of the 2013 season, on behalf of the New York Liberty coaching staff and players I wanted to take this time to express our gratitude to all our loyal supporters. Despite the overall record not being what we anticipated going into the season, you continued to make the trek to the Prudential Center and for that we are very grateful.
Although the season has just ended, it is never too early to think about the next season. When I took this job, the focus was on winning in 2013, however, every move and decision made was done with the future in mind. The goal all along has been to build a championship caliber team and I am confident the steps we are taking will lead us in that direction.
Reflecting on my first year as Liberty head coach, we worked hard to develop a team that prides itself on playing solid defense and rebounding the basketball, two characteristics that are hallmarks of a championship ball club and of a hard working New York franchise. Throughout the season we ranked in the top three in both opponent field goal percentage and rebounding, which is important for setting the tone and establishing our identity.
The injury to Essence was a setback, but she has been on the fast track to a healthy recovery. With Cappie spending a season learning her role at the lead guard, I expect that they will both come into next season ready to hit the ground running. The rookies progressed well over the course of the season, especially Kelsey who I thought had a very good year. While we did not play her as much, Toni Young also made significant progress in practice over the course of the season. I look for them to make that leap in their second year and join the other veterans to provide a solid core to build around. The unfortunate finish in the standings does present a silver lining with a high draft pick on the horizon.
Next year we look forward to returning home to The Garden after playing in Newark for the past three seasons. We realize that the trips to Newark may not have been convenient or ideal for many of you, but we sincerely appreciate your effort and attendance at our home games and the city and Prudential Center were gracious hosts. More to come from our business staff on season ticket renewals and the process for selecting your seats, but know this - our team completely understands the task at hand with our return to the world's largest stage. We know that excellence is not just expected, it is demanded. We will be up to the task.
Head Coach & General Manager
New York Liberty