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More on Erika de Souza: Gone for the Conference Finals?

The more I read about Erika de Souza, the less I understand.  First, she's gone for the playoffs.  Then, she'll stay for the playoffs.  Now, she's gone for the WNBA Eastern Conference Finals.

According to a Google translated story from esportes.terra.com.br, "...while Iziane Castro Marques decided not to play in the 2011 Fiba Tournament of the Americas, Erika de Souza...decided to prioritize the Brazilian Team and will compete in the Pre-Olympic Neiva."  (The tournament is being held in Neiva, Columbia.)  The article also states that "Erika will be presented on September 23, one day before the start of the Pre-Olympic Tournament."

The 2011 FIBA Americas Championship for Women takes place from September 24 through October 1.  The winning team in this tournament qualifies for the 2012 Olympics.  Ten teams will take place, and the second through fourth place finishers will have to compete again in the FIBA World Qualifying Tournament just before the Olympics. 

Eighteen year old Brazilian star Damiris Dantas (future 2012 WNBA Draft Pick) says that she maintains constant contact with Erika de Souza.  "I talk a lot on the internet with Erika and she is always eager to wear the shirt of Brazil. That's pretty cool. Without doubt, a player with more experience and quality will greatly help the team."

(As a side note, the Brazilian team remains unhappy with Iziane.  "Of course everyone is upset. Every player is called high-level, when it comes, we get upset. Everyone has free will and that's good, because you decide what you want for your future. We'll get a job in London with these 12 who are here," said Janeth Arcain, the former Houston Comets star who is now an assistant coach with the Brazilian national team.  This goes back to an incident where Iziane refused to come off the bench in a game for former Brazil head coach Paulo Bassul.  In order to get Iziane back on the Brazil team for the 2010 FIBA World Championship, the incident probably cost Bassul his job.  Arcain started as an assistant coach under Bassul.)

From what I'm reading on the internets, Erika de Souza will be out for the entire Eastern Conference Finals - but this has not been confirmed.  More when we learn more.