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Fever players, coach navigate mental hurdles of miserable season

INDIANAPOLIS — A familiar rhythm guided the last 20 minutes of the Fever’s Thursday practice underneath Gainbridge Fieldhouse.

Indiana had divided into two teams and was running through its offensive sets at full speed. Short bursts of competitive energy gave way to stillness every 30 seconds or so. Whether the offense scored or not, interim coach Carlos Knox or an assistant stepped in after each play to point out what the offense should have done differently.

When rookie center Queen Egbo asked a question, Knox made a point of saying he was glad she spoke up. He wanted her to question him and gain a better understanding of what he’s trying to teach his young team from her.

Throughout an ugly season, Knox has had to juggle future development with the present grind of a WNBA season, not to mention his and his team’s morale in the midst of a losing streak stretching back over six weeks. His preferred formula has been a mixture of encouragement and correction, making the team better while trying to avoid carrying the weight and misery of 14 straight losses and a 5-27 record.

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