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Chicago Sky focused on returning to WNBA playoffs in 2018

Chicago Sky Head Coach Amber Stocks stands with (G) Kahleah Copper and (F) Cheyenne Parker at the Sky's media day.

The Sky missed the playoffs last season for the first time since 2012 and Wednesday coach Amber Stocks assured everyone returning is a top priority.

“Making the playoffs is a priority,” Stocks said.

The 2018 draft was a huge step in the right direction for the organization. The Sky took Tennessee’s Diamond DeShields and UConn’s Gabby Williams with the third and fourth overall picks, and Stocks is confident they will have an immediate impact.

Alaina Coates, who was selected with the second overall pick in the 2017 draft, will also make her WNBA debut after missing last season because of an ankle injury.

“We’re extremely excited about all three rookies being able to make an immediate impact with our system in different ways,” Stocks said. “They all have different strengths. They play the way we play.”

Stocks is entering her second season as coach and general manager of the Sky, and this year the team isn’t looking to take things slowly. Stocks said there’s no more getting acclimated to each other.

In Year 2, she’s diving right in and the veterans are on the same page.

Allie Quigley, the DePaul alum who is entering her sixth season with the Sky and 10th in the league, said there is no time to take things slowly.

The Sky opened last season by losing 12 of 15 games and finished 12-22. The veterans are now stressing the importance of getting wins early, and that starts with building team unity.

“We have to use our experience from the last few seasons playing together and our year with Amber to bring the newcomers up to speed as fast as possible,” Quigley said. “We know this is a really short season so it’s all about doing things as fast as possible and as productive as possible.

The Sky open the season May 20 in its new home at Wintrust Arena against the New York Liberty.