WNBA Draft: Twins California-bound

BY JENNI CARLSON Modified: April 10, 2009 at 12:33 am •  Published: April 10, 2009
The Paris twins are going back to Cali.

The former Oklahoma standouts were selected by teams in their home state, California, during the WNBA Draft on Tuesday. Sacramento nabbed Courtney with the seventh overall pick, while Los Angeles tabbed Ashley with the 22nd pick.

Courtney Paris was doing a telephone interview when she heard about her sister’s selection.

"Hey, Ashley Paris is going to California, too,” she said, excitedly. "She’s playing for the Sparks.

"I’m excited for her.”

Courtney was stoked about her destination, too. As a girl growing up in Northern California, Sacramento was where she saw her first WNBA game. She was about 10 years old at the time, and until then, she’d never thought about playing basketball professionally.

"Until that point, I thought, ‘What do you do ... after college?’” she said. "That made me say, ‘Hey, I want to be a professional women’s basketball player.’”

Now, she’ll have that chance in Sacramento, which is only about 35 minutes from her father’s house.

Bubba Paris leaned in when her name was called and told her, "I’ll be at all your games.”

The trip to see Ashley will be a little longer. She will be in Southern California playing for the Sparks, who used their second-round pick to select her. Their roster is loaded with talent, including Lisa Leslie, who has announced she will retire after this season, and Candace Parker, who will miss this season because she’s pregnant.

"It’s obviously a great organization,” Ashley Paris said. "I’m going to have to work extremely hard.”