Compared to past WNBA seasons, the love has been positively flowing from Slamonline lately, with Goody’s typically solid work being complemented by Stephen Litel, and even Lang, who swears he’ll be ichatting with Candice Wiggins again soon. Well, the WNBA love is continuing thanks to five players from the New York Liberty who are going to be checking in with Slamonline during the season. Besides the players, who will introduce themselves in a minute, we owe a big thank you to Zoya Pavloskaya and Carolina Blanco of Sports International Group, Inc, who represent a host of professional female players. Zoya is a Russian native who played over there before playing three seasons of college ball at St. Joseph’s in Philly. She is now a marketing manager at SIG, and adds that you can find her at the Garden during Liberty games (“I’m the 6-5 Russian girl!”). As for Carolina, she is Executive Director of SIG and a women’s basketball fanatic. Again, thanks to Zoya and Carolina for hooking us up with five members of the Liberty. Who are, in their own words…

1. Essence Carson: Born and raised in Paterson, NJ, my interest in basketball came at an early age. At 7, I began playing with the kids in the neighborhood learning tip ands tricks from the guys. It wasn’t untill the sixth grade I began to play organized basketball for my elementary school, MLK Panthers. At the same time, I was juggling my second year of saxophone and private piano lessons with basketball. I was always busy. So, if I wasn’t playing basketball you could find me practicing one of those instruments. Call me a geek if you want to, LOL.

As each year passed, I continued to improve both athletically and musically. Oh, and did I mention that my mom never missed a home game and my grandparents were at every recital? It was always cool to have someone there to support you at all times at all costs. Once I began highschool and attended the city’s performing arts high school, my schedule became even busier. Fortunately, I was able to continue to pull off the balancing act with music and athletics throughout highschool while participating in track and volleyball.

In college nothing really changed. I continued pursuing music and a career in basketball. With my little brother who wasn’t so little anymore, 6’6 tall, improving in basketball and beginning to get letters from schools, I realized how much of an influence I was on him. My older sister always made me feel like a star. Everytime she calls me she’d always scream on the phone and tell me how proud of me she is. My mom can never stop smiling…and my grandfather, although he likes to keep quiet, I can tell how proud he is too. I believe it was their continuous support and reassurance, along with my own motivation that kept me going. Hey, I thank them for every bit of it! Now, I’m a pro basketball player with the NY Liberty and I’m still into my music, hoping to produce one day. There’s never an end to my dreams.—NYL #17, Essence Carson

2. Loree Moree: What up SLAM and NYC?!

This is Loree Moore, aka LMo from the New York Liberty! I am very excited to be apart of the blogs that SLAM has set up for our squad to get this opportunity to be able to interact w/our fans as well as the other readers of SLAM. I hope these blogs give you, “the readers,” an opportunity to get to know us a lil’ bit as people on a personal level.

I am a California girl, born and raised. I come from a single parent household. My mom Paulette Marlowe has held the fort down for me and my brother Brian Hunter (he used to play professional baseball…most would remember him when he played for the Atlanta Braves 1991 World Series team).

I’ve been playing basketball since I was 5 years oId at our local YMCA. My high school team, Narbonne High, was the bomb…GO GAUCHOS!!! Did you know my team produced 3 WNBA players? Myself, my Lib teammate Lisa Willis and Ebony Hoffman from the Indiana Fever. After high school, I moved on to spend my time in good ol’ Knoxville, Tennessee under Pat Summitt for 4 years. It was a great experience being there and having the opportunity to play at an elite level and make it to the final four all every year career there. We didn’t win the championship but the experience and opportunity there will never ever be forgotten…GO VOLS!

When I got drafted to New York, I literally ran around my apartment in college screaming! I’ve always wanted to play for NY and its honestly a dream come ture. NYC is the craziest, livest, and proudest city I have ever played in. Being from Cali, it was a culture shock at first. I never realized how slow Cali is until I came here. But I’m happy that I’m here…It is most definitely my home away from home. This city has so much to offer and I have a blast here. I have a confession to make, I have developed a serious addicition since I’ve been here…..SHOPPING! Have y’all been to SoHo? Good God…if I didn’t have some sort of self-control, I’d be broke.

On a more serious note, being in NY on this team has taught me so much. I’ve learned what discipline, accountability, and true determination is. That’s why when I’m old an grey I will always have a special place in my heart for the Liberty. I just wanted to give you a lil’ dab of Loree Moore but I promise I’ll give you more in the blogs to come.—Much love, Loree

3. Ashley Battle: This is a great honor to be writing for Slamonline. I am really excited to share my views on the sports world.

I am from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and I am an only child. I started playing organized basketball at the age of nine but I’ve been playing ball forever. In my spare time I like to go to the movies, doodle, and play on the computer. I have a little puppy named Bronx. No, not because of the borough, but because of the movie A Bronx Tale. Also, I thought it would be a cool name for a dog.

That’s it for now but I’ll have more in my next blog!—Ashley

4. Jessica Davenport: Wassup? I’m Jessica Davenport of the New York Liberty. This is my second season in the WNBA after I graduated from The Ohio State University. I was born and raised in Columbus, Ohio. I started playing basketball in the 7th grade after I was totally begged to because of my height (6-5). I had no interest in basketball or any other sport for that matter, but I decided to give it a try and here I am now!

Everybody I know would call me a big-time homebody. If it was not for basketball and the oppertunties Ive had because of it, I don’t think I would ever leave Columbus. I have two sisters, Joan and Shannon, and yes, I am the middle child. It’s ok though, I do not have the middle child symdrom that many people get :). Also I have two nephews and a neice that will definately be spoiled rotten because whatever they want from me they get. Sorry Joan.

I love to just chill out , hang with family and friends, shop and surf the internet. all my friends say I’m just real simple. I dont need a lot to have a good time as long as I’m with good people. As a side bar (because im a real random person), I’m totally addicted to sneakers. I have so many pairs of shoes which i dont need but if something looks good why not right?!?

Overall, I’m excited about the opportunity to blog with Slamonline and I can’t wait to continue to let you guys get to know me!—Jessica

5. Tiffany Jackson: My name is Tiffany Jackson and I am a forward on the New York Liberty. I’m from Dallas, Texas, and I attended college at the University of Texas. Hook ’em!!!

Off the court you can find me shopping or checking out different resturants recomended to me. Overall, I’m a pretty simple southern girl basketball, food and shopping. I’m super excited to write for SLAM Magazine’s website.—Tiffany