Exclusive: One-on-one with San Antonio Stars 2017 WNBA draft pick Nia Coffey
NEW YORK, NY —
With the fifth pick in the 2017 WNBA Draft, the San Antonio Stars selected forward Nia Coffey out of Northwestern and needless to say, she is excited to be heading to the Alamo City.
Coming into the WNBA, Coffey averaged 17.9 points, 9.2 rebounds and 1.8 blocks for her collegiate career and will be bringing a strong work-ethic on the court, and is ready to contribute for San Antonio during her rookie season.
After her selection, I caught up with Nia to talk about being picked by San Antonio, what she can bring to the Stars, playing alongside the Stars' No. 1 pick, Kelsey Plum, and so much more.
Jeff: Congratulations how does it feel?
Nia: It feels amazing. This whole moment is so surreal. I am just excited that it happened and I'm here and I am enjoying this moment with everyone.
Jeff: What was your first thought when you heard your name called?
Nia: Usually the cameramen comes over so you kind of have an idea. They weren't by me then I heard my name. I wasn't ready. 'Nia stand up, stand up! It's your time.' I just hugged everyone at my table. I was so happy. I was excited, overjoyed. I had all these emotions coming up. It was just an amazing moment.
Jeff: I saw you with your newest teammate, Kelsey Plum, a while ago. How does it feel playing along side Kelsey?
Nia: Kelsey! Everyone knows she is the "GOAT." She's amazing. We played together, actually, on Team USA before college and with Moriah Jefferson as well. I just love having her around. She's so personable. Such a beautiful person and personality. Just knowing I get to play with her. I actually told her last night, I was going to bed, I prayed 'Lord I will be happy wherever I go' and the thought popped on my mind! It will be crazy if me and Kelsey can play together and it happened! I'm so excited for this team.
Jeff: You're heading to a Stars team that is rebuilding. How do you fit in with the team?
Nia: I definitely am able to play different positions. I can play the wing, inside, I can stretch defenses, I can shoot, I can rebound, I am really good in transition by putting pressure on the defense. I just feel like we have so many weapons right now. Once we start playing together, we're going to be very hard to guard because we are so mobile and were so fast. I am just really excited to see what this team can bring to the season this year.
Jeff: It's new beginnings for everyone at the Stars. The Stars have a new coach.
Nia: Yes. I'm so excited. I just got off the phone with her (Vickie Johnson)and I'm just ready to be there to fill my role for this team. Hopefully we can get the San Antonio Stars to where they want to be.
Jeff: What did Coach Vickie tell you?
Nia: She just said she's so excited for me to get down there and I am excited too. I just had to ask her what I can do now? What can I start working on before I get down there? What can I look forward to?
She just told me that we're going to be an upbeat team. We're going to be in transition and "transition" I love that word.
Jeff: What's the first thing your going to do when you get to San Antonio?
Nia: (Laughing) I'm going to take my puppy, we're going to go outside and I'm going to let him run around.
Jeff: It looks like the Stars are definitely heading in the right direction with yourself, Moriah, and Kelsey.
Nia: Right. I'm so excited. Just Kelsey alone. Look at what she did! That's crazy just to see what she's going to do in the league and I get to be a part of that. We can be weapons together on the same team. Just to see that they have Kayla McBride, Moriah Jefferson those are amazing players. They're just on an elite level and I cant wait to get there.
Jeff: What did Kelsey say about being teammates?
Nia: We are both just so excited. I told her, 'You are my teammate!' We embraced. I am excited to start working with her.
Overall, I think the Stars made a great selection with Coffey. She not only has the physical tools but the personality, awareness of the task at hand and knows she is part of a team and not one to make it about the individual.
Expect great things from Nia in the WNBA.