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February 9, 2009 at 2:42 PM

Storm re-signs C Janell Burse

Burse.jpgEmerging center Janell Burse (pictured right) will return to the WNBA this summer, re-signing with the Storm today. She signed a multiyear contract worth the league maximum salary last spring, but opted to skip the season to heal from injuries suffered overseas.
The Storm suspended Burse in order to have cap space for other players, like trade pick-up Camille Little. The team retained Burse’s rights, however, so she could only re-sign with Seattle. The deal took a while to figure because, according to sources, Burse isn’t making the max this summer.
A member of the 2004 Storm championship team, she’s currently playing in Russia. We’ll have more in Tuesday’s paper. Here’s the release from the Storm:
STORM RE-SIGNS CENTER JANELL BURSE
Burse rejoins the team’s 10th Anniversary roster for her fifth season in Seattle

SEATTLE, Monday, Feb. 9, 2009 — Seattle Storm head coach and director of player personnel Brian Agler announced today the re-signing of 6-5 center Janell Burse. Per team policy, terms of the deals were not disclosed.
“We are very excited to have Janell return to Seattle this season, as she is one of the more experienced true centers in the WNBA,” Agler said. “I had the pleasure of drafting Janell while coaching in Minnesota and I like the strength she brings to our front court. Janell has always matched up well with our conference opponents and I’m looking forward to working with her again.”
Burse started 29 games for the Storm during the 2007 season, averaging 8.8 points and 5.3 rebounds per game. She scored a season-high 21 points against Detroit on June 20, and grabbed a career-high 19 rebounds on May 23 versus Phoenix. Her 16 rebounds in one half and 11 rebounds pulled down in one quarter against the Mercury are WNBA records. Burse owns career averages of 6.9 points and 4.2 rebounds per game over seven seasons split between Minnesota and Seattle. After re-signing with the Storm in April of 2008, Burse opted to sit out during the 2008 WNBA season.
“I’m very excited about returning to Seattle this summer,” said Burse. “I’ve truly missed playing in the WNBA and competing against some of the greatest players. I look forward to working with Brian again and joining a team that is a strong contender for another WNBA championship.”
The former Tulane player was drafted by the Minnesota Lynx in the second round (28th overall selection) of the 2001 WNBA Draft. In April of 2004, the Storm acquired Burse along with Sheri Sam from the Lynx in exchange for forward Amanda Lassiter and the Storm’s first-round pick (sixth overall selection) in the 2004 WNBA Draft.
The Seattle Storm will open its 2009 WNBA schedule on Saturday, June 6 in a 1 p.m. matchup versus the Monarchs at ARCO Arena in Sacramento. The Storm returns to Seattle on Sunday, June 7 for its first KeyArena home game at 6 p.m., also against the Monarchs. The team’s June 7, 2009 home opener falls on the 10th anniversary of the city of Seattle being selected as one of four cities to receive a WNBA expansion team in 2000.
For additional information about the Storm or for information on 2009 Storm season tickets, please call 206-217-WNBA or log on to storm.wnba.com.

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