New Scenery for Fever Stars
Since the start of the new year, a number of players have changed locations. Jasmine Hassell switched teams, moving from Israel to Spain while Erlana Larkins did the same, relocating from China to Italy. Erin Phillips and Layshia Clarendon each ended their winter seasons early to concentrate on rest and rehab prior to the summer WNBA campaign, and Briann January returned to action by reporting to Maranhao in Brazil.
January got her rest prior to going to South America, opting not to play overseas until the start of 2014. In a shortened season in Brazil, January’s club is currently 9-5 and in fourth place entering the Paulista Playoffs which begin March 15. The club is 8-5 with Bri in the lineup, playing alongside fellow WNBA stars Iziane Castro Marques and Roneeka Hodges. While Castro Marques paces the league in scoring, January is the league leader with 4.4 assists per game. Bri ranks ninth in scoring with 12.5 points per game, also averaging 2.9 rebounds and 1.5 steals.
In Italy, Erlana Larkins just keeps on rebounding. And producing double-doubles. Larkins has posted double-doubles in four of eight games played for her new team, Familia Schio, where she teams with Chicago Sky point guard Courtney Vandersloot. Larkins was honored last week as EuroBasket.com’s player of the week in Italy, following a 16-point, 18-rebound performance against Priolo. An 88-46 rout of Priolo helped Familia Schio stay atop the Italian standings with an 18-1 record – 4-0 since Larkins’ arrival on Feb. 2. In the Italian League, Larkins owns averages of 9.8 points and 10.8 rebounds. In EuroLeague action, Larkins owns averages of 9.0 points and 11.5 boards after a 12-point, 17-rebound effort against Slovakian power Good Angels Kosice.
In Spain, Jasmine Hassell has appeared in seven games with her new club, Rivas Ecopolis (14-4), which is currently in second place in its domestic league. Hassell averages 6.5 points and 4.o rebounds in domestic action, with Rivas Ecopolis 3-1 since her arrival. Rivas also plays in EuroLeague action where it is 5-7 overall. Hassell averages 5.3 points and 2.7 rebounds in Euro action, posting a high of 12 points on 6-of-12 shooting on March 1.
Phillips began the year with Wisla Can-Pack, for whom she had played in previous seasons, but left the club in December to rest an aggravated knee. She bought a block of Oceanside property in her native South Australia, where she is building a new home. Since late January, she has relocated to her American residence in Dallas where she is training prior to the WNBA season.
As reported last month, Clarendon left USK Praha in Czech Republic to rehab on a sore back. She trains in Northern California where she works out with her college team at the University of California.