‘Triple-double’ even when not in top form…Kim Dan-bi “It’s hard, but it’s okay”
Kim Dan-bi (33-Woori Bank), who was named the Most Valuable Player (MVP) of both the regular season and championship finals of the Women’s Professional Basketball League last season, heralded her time in the new season with a dominant performance from the first game.
Kim poured in a game-high 32 points to go with 17 rebounds and 10 assists for her first triple-double of the season in the official opening home game of the 2023-2024 regular season against BNK at the Asan Yi Sunshin Gymnasium on Friday.
Kim played an integral role in tying the game at 64-64, scoring 14 points in the fourth quarter alone as Woori Bank began to slip away from a close contest, and continued her performance in overtime, although she was unable to make the final shot to tie the game.
In particular, her final assist with a 70-68 lead in the dying seconds, when she deftly dished the ball to Goara for a three-pointer, not only completed her triple-double, but completely changed the outcome of the game.
With her three blocked shots on the night, Kim also surpassed the 500 blocked shot milestone for her career. The 500 blocked shots mark is the second most in WNBA history, behind only Lee Jong-ae (retired-862), the all-time leader in the category.
“It’s very hard to play overtime on the opening day, but I’m glad we were able to start the season with a win,” Kim said, adding, “I think we need to look at today’s game and prepare for the things that didn’t go well and work on them in future games.”
Kim, who travelled to the 2022 Hangzhou Asian Games prior to this season, has made a name for himself with his physicality even though he is yet to regain his full fitness.
“Even in practice, I couldn’t make the plays I wanted to make, and I couldn’t get my passing accuracy or shot balance right, so it was hard. I couldn’t recover, so I couldn’t wake up,” he said, adding, “I’m still not 100 per cent after the national team, but I’m doing it because I have to.” He laughed.
“It’s very hard, but it’s okay,” she said cheerfully. “In the end, training is the answer,” Kim emphasised, “I think I need to practice the plays that I can do a little more leisurely and concisely through practice.”
“I knew about the triple-double during the postgame interview,” he said, adding that the last assist was even more meaningful because it decided the game. 토토사이트