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April 17, 2020

Lauren Cox

New York, New York

Q. Kind of the place you were expected to go to. What are your thoughts about joining them and what have you seen from that team?
LAUREN COX: I'm really excited. I'm going to play for a coach who just came off a championship last year with the Mystics, going to play for a former player who was also recently inducted into the Hall of Fame. I'm going to get to play with another big, so I'm going to get to utilize my passing skills. I'm really excited.

Q. Teaira McCowan, is that somebody you're familiar with? Is that somebody you had played with or against at some point?
LAUREN COX: I played against her maybe once in high school, and then played against her when we played Mississippi State my freshman year. I know who she is, but haven't really ever gotten to know her.

Q. You mentioned your passing skills and what it means to play with another big. Tell me more about what it was like to play with Kalani [Brown] and what you learned from that experience of how to operate and how to kind of maximize your game when you're playing against to a center of that caliber.
LAUREN COX: It was a lot of fun to play with Kalani. I think Kalani and Teaira are very similar players. I think it's going to be exciting to be able to play with her. I think that experience has taught me more things about my passing, just where to get the ball to a player like that. It helped me with my outside shooting because when I couldn't get the ball inside, I had to score other ways.

Q. It looked like you and your family were having fun out there. I think they dropped some confetti on you. What was it like, the experience of waiting to be picked, and when you were what it was like getting confetti and celebrating with your family?
LAUREN COX: I was really nervous, and finally hearing my name called, it kind of calmed all those nerves. Then my sisters threw all the confetti on me and we hugged it out. It was just really fun. We made the most of it.

Q. I know Kevin Love came on the broadcast and congratulated you. What was your thoughts on that? Have you met Kevin before?
LAUREN COX: I have never met him, but he's always been a player that I've watched and kind of modeled my game after a little bit. That was really awesome, really unexpected, but really cool.

Q. What has this journey been like, from Flower Mound to Baylor and now to Indiana? And how excited are you for the next step in your journey?
LAUREN COX: It's definitely been a grind. I've worked extremely hard to get to this point. I've overcome injuries and everything. It's really exciting. I'm really excited to get started in Indiana.

Q. Obviously your Baylor career got cut short because of all that was going on, but just the run that you've been on and everything you learned along the way with your teammates there at Baylor and Coach [Kim] Mulkey, what has that meant to you now as you prepare for the next step?
LAUREN COX: It means a lot. Coach Mulkey taught me too many things to name, both on and off the court, that I'm going to remember for life. My teammates, they've been the best. Those are going to be friends and sisters for life that I'll never forget.

Q. I'm curious when you think of your game and the way it best fits. Obviously, you had a ton of success as a rim protector at the 4, stretching defenses next to Kalani. Do you see the opportunity to essentially replicate that in Indiana, and do you think that is the best fit for your game?
LAUREN COX: I think it is. I think Kalani and I showed how successful that can be when we won a national championship with that offense. I'm definitely looking forward to start working with the team and getting to know the players and everybody and seeing how that game translates at the next level.

Q. When you had initial conversations with Indiana, was that something in their mind when they were talking about the way this fit might work?
LAUREN COX: They recognized that I am a really good passer. They didn't mention the high-low game specifically, but I think that's something that we can definitely work on and make it work possibly in the future.

Q. The fact that you were taken No. 3 overall, which is a huge accomplishment, and everything that you've been through outside of basketball and being one of the top-tier athletes in the whole country with diabetes, talk about how incredible of an accomplishment that is. The fact that you've conquered that and the example that you can set for other younger kids to say, hey, I can do that and I can play in the WNBA one day.
LAUREN COX: I'm extremely proud. My hard work is finally paying off, and I'm really happy to see that. Just other kids with Type 1 diabetes, seeing me accomplish all these things, it's going to be big for them. They're going to see that they can do anything regardless of diabetes or not.

Q. You were talking about the excitement of getting dressed up with your sisters, and obviously with COVID-19 the situation is not ideal, but talk about how you really made the best of this and kind of that memorable night of being able to really soak it all in in a different situation at home, getting drafted.
LAUREN COX: Yeah, so we kind of all got ready together. We were all upstairs in the house so we were going to each other's rooms, asking each other different opinions about hair, makeup, doing each other's makeup, that kind of thing. It was really fun just to spend that time with them. They always make things fun.

Q. When you're going to Indiana, what is the biggest thing that people don't know about? What's the best part of your game that nobody has really talked about or recognizes that you bring to the table, for the Indiana fans watching?
LAUREN COX: I would say maybe my instincts on defense. Just knowing when to go to help side, when to go help a teammate, when to jump in a passing lane, playing a player's strong side, that kind of thing. So yeah, probably just my instincts on defense.

Q. You mentioned Kevin Love and kind of modeling your game after him. Tell me more about that. How have you tried to emulate his game? What parts of your game do you think come from watching him?
LAUREN COX: I think the long outlet pass -- watching him make that, people have told me that I look like him making those long outlet passes. Then just being a big player that's able to step out and shoot the three. People didn't see that as much my senior year because I was playing more of a 5 position, playing inside, but I'm definitely looking to get back into that and start shooting outside shots again.

Q. With the shutdown going on worldwide, what have you been doing to be able to stay in shape and keep your skills intact? Are there any areas of concern that you'd like to focus on once you can get in a gym, get in a weight room and get back to full-fledged working out?
LAUREN COX: Yeah, so my sisters and I have been pretty creative. We have gone over to a park that has a big field, done some sprints over there. We found a hill on the side of the road and just doing some sprints up the hill, doing circuit workouts in the front yard. Luckily, we have a weight set out in our garage that we've been able to use, a basketball goal out front. But I just miss being in the gym. It's hard to work on your shot when you're outside and it's windy, it's sunny, that kind of thing. Just getting back in there and getting back up and down the court. You can do all the sprints in the world, but there's nothing that compares to basketball shape and actually getting up and down.

Q. About a year ago when you suffered that injury in Tampa, to get back on to the floor for this season, from that injury through the aggravation this year, what has the last 12 months been like to get to tonight?
LAUREN COX: It's taken a lot of hard work and a lot of patience. I'm a competitor, and I want to be on the court out there helping my team. When I had to sit out at the beginning of this past season, that was hard for me. But I kind of took more of a coaching role. I may not have been out there to tell my teammates what to do on the court, but once they came out of the game, if they had a question, I was the one that they could come to and help them out.

Q. Was there a player that was an inspiration for you growing up and that you'd love to follow the path now in the WNBA?
LAUREN COX: One player that I always liked watching was Elena Delle Donne. I just loved the way that she can score inside, outside. She can do a little bit of everything. I just really liked that and have always loved watching her play.

Q. I know you touched on it earlier, but just want to ask you again, what kind of like your roller coaster of emotions was from dealing with your injury this year to getting to this stage and finally getting drafted?
LAUREN COX: It means a lot for me to see my hard work paying off. I worked extremely hard after that knee injury, and then it was hard to start this past season off with another injury. Once I got back from that one, I worked even harder, staying in the gym, trying to get back in shape, trying to get my touch back, that kind of thing. All my hard work has paid off and I'm excited for this next chapter in my life.

Q. How much contact did you have with Indiana before the draft and what did they tell you about your fit with them even before tonight?
LAUREN COX: I had one conversation with them, with their coaching staff and with Tamika [Catchings]. It was a really good conversation. Just them getting to know me, me getting to know them, what they expected from me if I were to go to them, that kind of thing. It was a really good conversation.

Q. Third pick for you, behind two big, big names. Is Indiana the right place for you in terms of the city and the roster?
LAUREN COX: I think it's a great place for me. I have never been to Indianapolis so I can't say much about the city, but I think it's a great fit for me as far as the team goes. I love being able to play with another big post player. I think that's going to be a lot of fun. I'm really excited.

Q. Are you going to miss Baylor?
LAUREN COX: Yeah, I'm definitely going to miss Baylor. That's been my home for the past four years. I've developed some great friendships that are going to last a lifetime. I'm going to miss my coaches, my teammates and the Baylor fans.

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