Video and Story: CAL WBB Preseason Presser

pearbear
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Staff
Hey there!

Is it really basketball season already? Not yet. But the Bear Insider was invited to an early pre-season press conference and interviews session, so we're bringing you this early early coverage to whet your appetite!

In addition to Coach Gottlieb and the players at the press conference (Thomas, Smith, Anigwe, Caldwell), I was able to speak to Cayton, Yue, Brown, and West.

Story and Video

My biggest takeaway: players look to be in great shape!

GO BEARS!
SFCALBear72
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Great story and video. The players are focused and seem very confident. The added depth will surely help. I'm excited about the upcoming season.

GO Bears!!
CalFanatic
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Best team we've had since our FF run, with the addition of (a healthy) Caldwell. Looking forward to this season!
MoragaBear
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Staff
Speaking of being in shape, most certainly at the head of the line is CJ West. She must've lost 50-60 lbs, easy.

They're a lean, mean, fighting machine coming into this season.
Schroeder71
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I enjoyed the pre-season intro to the 2018-19 women's basketball team. Is Alaysia Styles still a member of the team? I noticed that she was not mentioned in the write-up. Penina Davidson's rebounding will have to be replaced this season and hopefully AS can help fill that void. Did she possibly add any weight/muscle in the off-season to make her a more physical presence inside?

https://calbears.com/roster.aspx?path=wbball

I noticed that no questions were asked about team defense. If one reviews the roster (above), a minimum of nine (maybe ten) quality players jump out. I would hope that coach Gottlieb will employ more pressure defense this year with the additional quality depth that the team posseses. I would love to see some full-court pressure and lots of half-court traps utilized. GO BEARS!
stu
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MoragaBear said:

Speaking of being in shape, most certainly at the head of the line is CJ West. She must've lost 50-60 lbs, easy..

Great news! Having to play nearly the entire Virginia game may have motivated her.
SFCALBear72
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Schroeder71 said:

I enjoyed the pre-season intro to the 2018-19 women's basketball team. Is Alaysia Styles still a member of the team? I noticed that she was not mentioned in the write-up. Penina Davidson's rebounding will have to be replaced this season and hopefully AS can help fill that void. Did she possibly add any weight/muscle in the off-season to make her a more physical presence inside?

https://calbears.com/roster.aspx?path=wbball

I noticed that no questions were asked about team defense. If one reviews the roster (above), a minimum of nine (maybe ten) quality players jump out. I would hope that coach Gottlieb will employ more pressure defense this year with the additional quality depth that the team posseses. I would love to see some full-court pressure and lots of half-court traps utilized. GO BEARS!
Yes, she is!! Coach G mentioned her briefly in her comments about player rotations - she used her nickname of Birdy.
Schroeder71
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SFCB72-thanks for your response! The nickname must have gone right past me. GO BEARS!
CalFanatic
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50-60 pounds? Wow. Good for CJ!
stu
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I have a feeling we're planning to play faster this year and everyone is getting prepared.
wbbilluminati
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I've been dying to know: will we see a post tandem of CJ West and Kristine Anigwe in the starting lineup? Then A Teezy, Kiana Smith, and Recee Caldwell in the backcourt?

Or should I expect LG to start Jaelyn Brown, Micole Cayton, or perhaps ultimately Kenzie Forbes?

I miss the days when we started Talia Caldwell along with Gennifer Brandon or Reshanda Gray (or further back to Devanei Hampton and Ashley Walker). We were SO good on the boards with that approach, and not too shabby scoring with two "pure" inside players on the court together, and solid with interior defense.

Many said Kristine seemed to be developing more as a power forward last season, which bodes well to having CJ West on the court with her anchoring the middle. However, I could also see LG (once again) really riding Anigwe and wanting to clear out space for her to go to work, thus using CJ to relieve her rather than complement her on the floor. And like Recee said in her prior interview, if she, Smith, and A Teezy are consistently shooting from outside at a decent clip, Anigwe might not see as many double and triple teams, thus more impetus to just clear space and let her go to work one-on-one in the post without CJ West on the floor at the same time.

50-60 pounds is fantastic. Especially for a player like CJ, for whom conditioning seemed to really be the main thing holding her back from unleashing her full potential.
BSH
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Good question about emotional and intellectual growth, pearbear. LG answered about noise level in gym and the ways the players support each other as more nuanced. I wonder what that actually looks like. Anyway, fun to see the presser.
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