Hungary: Holland-Corn Impresses Both On And Off Court

20.01.2005

By Doug Booth, PA International

There's much more to sharp-shooting guard Kedra Holland-Corn than meets the eye.

While the 30-year-old only has eyes for the basket on the court, there is a caring, sharing side to Holland-Corn when she isn't playing.

The recent tsunami tragedy in Asia has meant that she and her husband Jesse, who she married in 1996, could put into practice what they believe in a positive way through a Budapest church.

"We have become involved with a humane society which raises money to build houses,"

I love to shoot and love to have the green light
Kedra Holland-Corn
Holland-Corn told PA International.

"At the moment the financial contributions are going towards putting new roofs on in the worst-affected areas of Sri Lanka.

"It's important for professional athletes to show that they do have a heart and do things. It's our responsibility."

Holland-Corn has been more selfish with her shooting on the court this winter for high-flying BSE ESMA Budapest averaging 30.3ppg before her team crashed out of the play-offs to ZKK Croatia.

"I love to shoot and love to have the green light - that's what I have here in Budapest with (coach) Csaba Deri," she said.

She feels she might be reaching the peak of her career in Europe but is determined not to become someone who just cashes in on her ability as she grows older.

"It's not about the money. I ask myself if I am mentally and physically ready to play at the highest level," said Holland-Corn.

"I don't want to take the money and just sit on the bench."

Holland-Corn said it was important to build up a strong relationship with the coach at the club she was playing for.

Holland-Corn has been unstoppable this season in the FIBA Europe Cup
She has achieved that in Budapest and, previously with Bill Laimbeer, head coach of the Detroit Shock.

Holland-Corn won the WNBA championship with the Shock in 2003 and she revealed this week that she and Laimbeer had spoken by phone "on a couple of occasions" about her returning to the team this summer.

"Like many coaches who have also played the game professionally, Bill understands the wear and tear on the body and the chemistry of the game," said Holland-Corn, who is an unrestricted free agent after playing last season with the Houston Comets.

"He played in the NBA for 14 years and I love playing for coaches who are former players.

"I was in control of my game at Detroit and Bill did not have any handcuffs to stop me."

But if Holland-Corn decides to have another WNBA season - that would make seven consecutive appearances in America's top women's league - she insists she has to be at the top of her game.

"I don't want to just cruise through the season," she said.

"Playing 12 months a year your joints are very different. They don't recover as quickly and you feel the aches and pains more.

"I want to be a very good player and play great in a great league," she said.

But Holland-Corn said if she did not feel up to it, she would take 12 months off.

"I'll make the decision in a couple of months. At the moment I am concentrating on Europe," she said.

Holland-Corn said comparing the WNBA with the European style of game was like chalk and cheese.

"The WNBA is the people's league," she said.

"You play for the fans and for the organisation.

"In Europe, it is pure basketball. When I come to this environment it's time to relax and play.

"I prefer it to the US - there are too many distractions at home."


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