Kiana Smith’s two goals: ‘Champion’ + ‘MVP’

“I have to set the highest goal to increase my competitive spirit.” WKBL declared that starting from the 2019-2020 season, ‘overseas Korean players can be selected in the draft.’ The so-called ‘Overseas Korean Player System’ was revived. So Kiana Smith (178cm, G) was also able to enter WKBL. Kiana, who was born to an American father and a Korean mother, applied to the 2022 WKBL new player selection event as an overseas compatriot player. Recognizing Kiana’s potential, Yongin Samsung Life Insurance tried to select Kiana somehow. So, a triangular trade was carried out with Busan BNK Some and Bucheon Hana One Q. At the 2022 WKBL New Player Selection, they received the first-round priority pick from Hana 1Q, and Samsung Life Insurance, which ranked 5th in the 2021-2022 season and formed the 1st group with Hana 1Q, automatically obtained the first-round pick. And Samsung Life Insurance chose Kiana. Kiana, who came to Korea, left a big impact right from the tryout. He also showed off his ‘ball handling’ and ‘shooting’ in practice games with professional teams such as Hana One Q, BNK, and Cheongju KB Stars. Kiana has shown good performances since his debut season. He averaged 13.18 points, 4.4 assists, and 3.6 rebounds per game in 17 games, averaging 30 minutes and 20 seconds. He formed Samsung Life Insurance’s one-two punch with Bae Hye-yoon (183cm, C). But on December 26, 2022. Kiana collapsed during the game against Asan Woori Bank. A ruptured patellar tendon in his left knee. Kiana, who suffered a serious injury, is out for the season. Kiana’s first season in WKBL ended in vain. Kiana said, “I was so sad because of my knee injury. Also, the main resources, including (Bae) Hye-yoon, (Yoon) Ye-bin, and (Lee) Ju-yeon, were all sick. “So she did not perform well,” she said, regretting the injury of her key resources, including herself. Still, she said, “It was encouraging what the young players experienced. And all key players can enter this season in good health. So, I think it will create a synergy effect with the experience of young players,” she said, praising the ‘accumulation of experience of young players.’ Kiana, who was out for the season, began rehabilitation. After he returned to the United States, he focused on getting in shape. She returned to Korea, but there is a difference in strength between both lower bodies. So, Kiana needs quite a long time. She must be frustrating for Kiana. But she said Kianna “there was a time when she couldn’t walk. Even back then, she was having a hard time. But her physical condition quickly improved. She benefited greatly from the help of her trainer and the 메이저놀이터encouragement of her family and friends. “I think she’ll be able to get back on the court sooner than we think,” she said, adding that she was positive about her current physical condition. She continued, “She has to go on the court feeling 100 percent. “If she doesn’t want to get injured again, she needs to build a body that can prevent injuries,” she said, emphasizing her ‘100 percent body.’ Meanwhile, if Kianna, Yoon Ye-bin (180cm, G), Lee Joo-yeon (171cm, G), etc. return safely, her power of Samsung Life will grow even greater. However, time is needed to coordinate Kiana and the other players. This is because the time Kianna and her existing players were together was short. So, Kiana said, “Because I played last year, I know our team’s style well. The same goes for the players’ tendencies and the coach’s style. So I don’t think it will be as difficult as last year. However, the key is to increase athletic stamina. He also considered the time after his return to be important, saying, “It is important to be helpful to the team.” Lastly, “The biggest goal we set every year is ‘champion.’ Personally, he is ‘MVP’. When I set the highest goal, whether as a team or individually, my competitive spirit increases. At the same time, I can have fun playing basketball,” he said. That spirit of improvement made me look forward to Kiana’s upgrade.

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