Lauren Jackson and Yolanda Griffith are paving the way for players like me, says Natasha Cloud

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(Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein / NBAE via Getty Images)

Earlier this week, the finalists for the 2021 Basketball Hall of Fame finalist were announced. WNBA legends Lauren Jackson and Yolanda Griffith both made the cut. Both are well accomplished in the WNBA and abroad.

Griffith’s accomplishments include a WNBA Championship with the Sacramento Monarchs in 2005 and the Finals MVP. She was also named WNBA MVP, Defensive Player of the Year in 1999, eight-time All-Star and a member of the All-Decade team in the early 2000s.

Jackson is two-time WNBA Champion (2004, 2010) and Finals MVP (2010) with the Seattle Storm, and three-time WNBA MVP (2003, 2007, 2010). Jackson was also defensive player of the year in 2007, a member of the All-Decade team in the early 2000s.

On Wednesday afternoon, Washington Mystics goaltender Natasha Cloud was a guest in the WBB WEEKLY room on Clubhouse, hosted by Khristina Williams. During the question-and-answer session, I asked Cloud what his memories of Griffith and Jackson were.

“I watched the W grow up, and I had the privilege of watching it because a lot of the players didn’t have the privilege of watching it. So whenever they were on the TV my dad would always turn it on, and he would always check when the WNBA games were on.

“So, Lauren Jackson and Yolanda, I actually had the opportunity to play the role of coach [Yolanda Griffith]from the Massachusetts team during my last year at St. Joesph. I did have the opportunity to meet her at that time, but they were so cold. Lauren Jackson, what she meant to Seattle, ”Cloud said.

“She was so legendary and what she could do on the pitch. So smooth and fluid, and Yolanda was just a bully. She just did, and I have so much love and respect for GOs. Again, you’re talking about women, who paved the way for me to be where I am today. So, nothing but love for both.

Natasha Cloud has just resigned with the Washington Mystics for a three-year extension. The move helps solidify the 2019 WNBA champions on the defensive side of the ball with two-time WNBA champion Alysha Clark.


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